Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Mountain Dog by Margarita Engle

Mountain DogThis book is written in poetic form, and I gave it a rating of four out of five. Tony's mom came to America from Cuba, but she got involved in illegal dogfighting. Tony is placed in foster care with his Uncle Tio after his mom is sent to prison. His uncle lives in the Rocky Mountains and serves as a volunteer rescuer with his dog, Gabe. Tony is leery of making new friends, and he is having trouble adjusting to feelings about his mom. Uncle Tio teaches him about search and rescue with Gabe, and Tony also learns survival techniques for the wild. Living in the middle of a mountainous forest may make this information come in very handy.

The poetic format (it doesn't rhyme) seemed unusual for this type of story, but it worked. It helped express Tony's feelings about life in the middle of nature, his mom, Gabe, and trying to move on. Also, most of the book is written from Tony's point of view, but some are written from the dog's point of view. The dog helps with the description of Tony's ever-changing emotions.

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