Review by Frances- A Handful of Stars by Cynthia Lord.

Book Review - A Handful of Stars by Cynthia Lord.

Stars:  5

This is an excellent summer read for middle grade girls.   It is about friendship with someone not like yourself.  The characters are identifiable and as the story progresses the reader lears about a different way of life - The life of migrant workers - and learns to respect it.  And naturally if I am reading it - it has a dog in it.  The two girls in the story bond together over a common goal to help a dog - I won't give away the details.   I recommend this book.   

Frances Crossno, PMP

Author:  Cole's Perfect Puppy


Review by Frances - Until Tuesday by Luis Carlos Montalvan

Review - Until Tuesday by Luis Carlos Montalvan

Stars: 5

This book has been around for a while.  In fact it has been on my bookshelf unread for a long time.  I delayed reading it as I expected it to be a powerful story and I needed to be in the right frame of mind for it.  -- I was not disappointed.  Totally grips the soul as it takes you through the progression of Luis Carlos' life changing relationship with his Golden Retiever Tuesday.   I was also much more totally enlighted about the nature of PTSD.  While it has some aspects as one might expect, the constant hightened alertness was a little different than what I first imagined.  It does a tremendous job in educating the reader on the topic.  

Tuesday is one special dog.   While dogs are pack animals and respect their owners as leader of the pack, dogs are also very capable of love, committment and devotion.  I don't need a scientific study to tell me this.  All you have to do is look into that pair of loving eyes.  They often love you more than you love yourself.  Tuesday is such a dog.

When you finish the book you will be exhausted, but you will also want to continue to follow Luis and other veterans like him.

Thank you for sharing your story Luis.  Thank you for your sacrifice and service to our country.   As I imagined, it was one powerful book!


Frances Crossno, PMP

Author:  Cole's Perfect Puppy



Stepdog by Nicole Galland

I loved this book.  I don't want to give away the complex plot but I will tell you my feelings as I read the book.

- Unusual, Interesting and engaging.   Took a bit to get all the elements set up for the later chain of events -- but then - watch out. 

- Several absolutely hilarious scenes. Some I had to stop and read several times they were so good.

- One absolutesly heart stopping scene - you will know what it is whey you read it - and so much like a golden retriever.

- Author Understands the nature and heart of the golden retriever.

I will likely read this book again on a cold winter evening or a hot summer night.

I recommend this book - 5 stars.


Frances Crossno, PMP

Author:  Cole's Perfect Puppy



The dog who saved me by Susan Wilson

Four broken people.  One broken dog.  A testament to the power of the love - even of a dog.  Grief, regret, guilt and history can all be overcome. 

The dog who saves the main character  is actually not the dog that is the center of the story. 

My  favorite parts were  the "dog thoughts" and would have liked more of that.  

I recommend this book.


Frances Crossno, PMP

Author:  Cole's Perfect Puppy

ARGOS by Ralph Hardy

This book tells the classic adventures of Odysseus.  Argos is his faithful dog that is left behind to watch over his family.  Argos is old now and wants to see his master again.  He has followed his master's voyages  through other animals that have seen him like birds and sea turtles,  even a cat that has traveled on a ship. 


I expect that boys will like this one.  Argos of course dies after seeing his master return after 20 years.  However Argo's son who has grown up in the wild becomes the loyal companion to Odysseus' son. 


What I liked best about this book was that the other dogs and animals showed Argos great respect even though he was old.  A good lesson for children




Watchers by Dean Koontz

Loved it!  Loved it!  Loved it!

Plot is too good to reveal so I will say that Dean Koontz captures the soul of the Golden Retriever.  It also allows us to live out every dog owners fantasy of being able to communicate with our dog.   

It is emotional and thrilling, nightmarish and satisying at the same time as only Dean Koontz can pull off! 


Save this one for  rainy night or a cold winter one.  You won't want to put it down.