Saturday, October 16, 2010

Aggie the Brave

Aggie the Brave
written by Lori Ries; illustrated by Frank W. Dormer
(Charlesbridge) 2010
Source: Mebane Public Library

 Ben's dog Aggie is going to the vet to be spayed. On the way to the vet, Ben tells her to be brave but Aggie isn't so sure. It's Ben's turn to be brave when the vet tells him that Aggie must spend the night. On his way out, Ben tells Aggie again to be brave, but on the way home Ben doesn't feel so brave himself. He spends a long lonely day waiting to hear from the vet. When Ben returns the next day to pick up Aggie, the vet tells him that she will have to wear a cone for two weeks so Aggie won't bite the stitches. Aggie is not thrilled, but Ben comes up with a marvelous plan to make his best friend feel better about wearing the cone.

One of the reasons why Aggie the Brave is a terrific early reader book is how Lori Ries has written the character of Ben. I could see K-2 students having the same reactions if they were in Ben's situation. After Ben hears that he can pick up Aggie the next day, he decides to get in bed at 4 o'clock in the afternoon. He reasons that if he goes to bed early, it will bring Aggie home sooner. I know (and I was one!) kids who do this before a particular holiday in December. My favorite illustration of the book is of the next morning when Ben is wearing a suit and bow tie and waiting to go to the vet while his parents are in their bath robes with coffee in hand. This book is just the right size for early readers with humorous illustrations and a charming story that will easily connect with K-2 students.

Other reviews of Aggie the Brave:
King County Library Talk
Kirkus Reviews

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