Sunday, June 24, 2012

Kids Korner: A Dog's Life: Autobiography of a Stray by Ann M. Martin

  • Reading level: Ages 9 and up
  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Scholastic Paperbacks (January 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0439717000
  • ISBN-13: 978-0439717007

Genre: Children, Realistic Fiction

Synopsis: This story is written from the view point of the dog, years later looking back on her life. The reader starts following her as a puppy and it's all given from the view point of the dog and she loses family members, tackles starvation, packs of vicious dogs, cars, and the ultimate enemy --- human beings.

Our thoughts: My children decided this was a riveting journey as they followed the life of this poor dog. Parts of it made the kids very sad and other parts made them to be very happy. They loved this book and moaned any time we had to stop and do other things in our life. Her name changes several times throughout her life depending on who she lives with. She started off as Squirrel though. It's the name her mother gave her. It is an emotional journey for children though... be warned.

Author:  (info from Goodreads) Ann Matthews Martin was born on August 12, 1955. She grew up in Princeton, New Jersey, with her parents and her younger sister, Jane. After graduating from Smith College, Ann became a teacher and then an editor of children's books. She's now a full-time writer.

Ann gets the ideas for her books from many different places. Some are based on personal experiences, while others are based on childhood memories and feelings. Many are written about contemporary problems or events. All of Ann's characters, even the members of the Baby-sitters Club, are made up. But many of her characters are based on real people. Sometimes Ann names her characters after people she knows, and other times she simply chooses names that she likes.

Ann has always enjoyed writing. Even before she was old enough to write, she would dictate stories to her mother to write down for her. Some of her favorite authors at that time were Lewis Carroll, P. L. Travers, Hugh Lofting, Astrid Lindgren, and Roald Dahl. They inspired her to become a writer herself.

Since ending the BSC series in 2000, Ann’s writing has concentrated on single novels, many of which are set in the 1960s.

After living in New York City for many years, Ann moved to the Hudson Valley in upstate New York where she now lives with her dog, Sadie, and her cats, Gussie, Willy and Woody. Her hobbies are reading, sewing, and needlework. Her favorite thing to do is to make clothes for children. 

For more info on Ann Martin visit her websites and

Rating: According to my 6 and 4 year old -- ***** Five Stars

To purchase book click here (hover for details):

 A Dog's Life: Autobiography of a Stray

1 comment:

Alyssa McVey said...

That sounds like an interesting book, and one that I think I would enjoy, even though I'm not 9. :) I used to love reading the Baby Sitters Club books, and I enjoy her style of writing.