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Fred Stays With Me! Hardcover – June 1, 2007


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 3 - 6 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 1
  • Lexile Measure: 430L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (June 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316882690
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316882699
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 0.8 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,394,927 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Starred Review. Kindergarten-Grade 3—Coffelt and Tusa have teamed up to create a charming book that meshes text and illustrations seamlessly. A young girl moves back and forth between her divorced parents' homes, along with her canine companion, Fred, who has several bad habits that neither parent appreciates. When the dog wears out his welcome at both homes, the child must forcefully remind the adults that, "Fred stays with me!" and help work out solutions for his naughty behavior. The story unfolds through the voice of the child: "Sometimes I live with my mom. Sometimes I live with my dad. My dog, Fred, stays with me." Her descriptions of what she does at each residence and Fred's constant affection and consistent bad behavior can be read independently by the intended audience. The text, for the most part, appears against a simple white backdrop. Tusa uses gold and brown hues with occasional splashes of red to create a warm tone. The narrator is drawn with a doll-like charm, but it is Fred, with his perky ears and perpetually wagging tail, that holds the most appeal.—Maura Bresnahan, High Plain Elementary School, Andover, MA
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

A small girl's bond with her beloved pet helps her handle the disruption of her parents' divorce. She has to sleep in two different beds in two different homes, but wherever she goes, her dog, Fred, stays with her. He does make trouble--barking at the poodle that lives next door to Mom's house, shaking mud all over her car seats, eating Dad's socks--but when the grown-ups object, she is adamant that she will never let him go. Kids will enjoy the simple, first-person narrative and the playful art, in shades of brown and red, that shows the mayhem Fred causes and the power he gives the child because he will never leave her. Shown from the girl's viewpoint, the pictures do not include the grown-ups. For more picture books about shuttling between parents' homes, pair this with the titles in the Read-alikes "Mom's House, Dad's House," in the March 1, 2003, issue of Booklist. Hazel Rochman
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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See all 15 customer reviews
Ms. Tusa is a memorable illustrator.
E. R. Bird
A great book for kids that have to deal with separation and divorce of their parents.
Melanie Demyer
This was a cute picture book about the serious topic of divorce.
Marsha L. Ingrao

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By E. R. Bird HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on November 4, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Maybe it's a little too soon to start cooing loudly over a 2007 title. And not just any 2007 title but a JUNE 2007 title. Maybe. And maybe it's too soon to start mentioning it to my patrons when they ask for picture books that concern a topic all too common in American today; divorce. Maybe. And maybe it's too soon to start whispering words like "fabulous pictures" and "sensible touching plot" and "must-own title" around Nancy Coffelt's, "Fred Stays With Me". Maybe. Or maybe a blogger like myself should start as early as possible to help rustle up some support for what I strongly believe to be a must-have 2007 pick. Picture books come and picture books go but I think there's gonna be one thing we can all agree on in the upcoming 2007 season... "Fred Stays With Me!"

Says the young girl hero of this book, life can be inconsistent but not when it comes to her dog Fred's living status. Whether she's living with her mom one day or her dad the next, "Fred stays with me!". Of course, it's not as if Fred is a perfect pet at all times. When they're at her mom's he likes to bark at the next door neighbor's poodle. When they're at her dad's, Fred eats every sock you can find. Still, the pup is a constant in the little girl's life. So much so that when each of her parents make the point that Fred can't stay with them, our heroine declares long and loud that there is no question of Fred staying with one parent or another. After all, "Fred stays with ME!" Realizing this, her mom and dad find ways to work around or change Fred's less than desirable habits and all is well in the end.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By G. Auxier on June 7, 2007
Format: Hardcover
For the last 14 years I have taught Positive Divorce Resolution, a 4 hour course for divorcing parents in Florida and this book is my all time favorite. It is simple, clear, a real pleasure to read.

Fred Stays With Me is the first and only book that has you pulling for the child every step of the way. Very well written, well illustrated and complete in its message: kids need to be considered, kids need consistency, kids need support. I would like for every judge in family law and every attorney who practices family law to have a copy in their waiting rooms. I will keep Fred Stays with me on my list of recommended reading for parents.

Thank you Nancy Coffelt, for writing this book!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A. M. Brown on September 12, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I have searched for books to help my 4 year old daughter better understand life after divorce. I have not found a book yet that shed a positive family dynamic until Fred Stays with Me! Our family experience was fortunately far more positive than many of the books on the market that deal with divorce suggest. We tried a few others and the father always seems disinterested or abusive. While I recognize these subjects are important for some families, I applaud the author and illustrator for making divorce the background. My daughter adores the book. It has sparked wonderful conversations about our family situation.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Melanie Demyer on June 5, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A great book for kids that have to deal with separation and divorce of their parents. Both households are very different, and this can be very unsettling to kids, but the one main "constant" in her life is Fred...because "Fred stays with her." Very cute illustrations, too!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By My2Cents VINE VOICE on November 11, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Fred Stays With Me is a touching story about the uncertainty a young girl is experiencing when her parents divorce. She must get use to two homes, two beds, but where ever she goes, so does her dog Fred. As she goes through her daily activities, Fred is by her side. Two houses is an adjustment for Fred as well, and although he doesn't mean to, he tracks mud in the house, eats dad's socks and annoys the neighbor's dog when visiting mom. Her new life takes some getting use to, but soon she sees, many things in her life stay the same: same school, same friends, and her loyal furry pal Fred always at her side.

The story is told in the first person, and it was just a delight to read. This is a perfect story to reassure children in similar circumstances that although divorce can be scary, many things that are near and dear to children can stay pretty much stay same. Life, although a bit different, can still be fun. The illustrations, by Tricia Tusa are fabulous. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By "Helen Schlegel" on June 13, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I work with children and parents through an education program designed to decrease risk of abuse and neglect in identified famiies.I found my first copy in a grocery store bargain bin and after reading it sent it to my grown daughter who had "Teddy" to stay with her. After 17 years Teddy, went to his reward, and my daughter called to say the book captured how she had felt and found it a touching tribute to all the Freds and Teddies of the world. I purchased this second copy, based on her reaction, to use with clients to help them understand that just because their situation is amicable, and separateness their ideal; their children experience the dissolution of family living under one roof to two differently. The gentle humor and the lovely quality of the illustrations help convey the message that even though children may understand, changes can still be hard to transition, especially emotional ones without support.
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More About the Author

Nancy Coffelt began her career as a fine artist and soon branched out into illustration and writing for young people. While she is known for her bright oil pastel imagery and humorous picture books, Nancy's young adult work has an edgier side. Her books have garnered praise ranging from starred reviews from Kirkus, Horn Book and SLJ as well as her FRED STAYS WITH ME receiving an ALA Notable mention as well as the Boston Globe/Horn Book Honor Award.
Nancy lives, paints, writes, teaches and obeys the whims of her family's two small dogs in Portland, Oregon.

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