Buy Used
$0.01
+ $3.99 shipping
Used: Very Good | Details
Condition: Used: Very Good
Comment: This is a very good copy with slight wear and does not include a dust jacket;
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

Latasha and the Little Red Tornado Paperback – November 15, 2011


See all formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Paperback
"Please retry"
$7.95 $0.01
Best%20Books%20of%202014
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Kindle FreeTime Unlimited
Free one month trial
Get unlimited access to thousands of kid-safe books, apps and videos, for one low price, with Amazon FreeTime Unlimited. Get started for free. Learn more

Product Details

  • Age Range: 9 - 12 years
  • Paperback: 133 pages
  • Publisher: Midlandia Press (November 15, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 098372430X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0983724308
  • Product Dimensions: 7.7 x 5.1 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,004,068 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Latasha and the Little Red Tornado is an engaging novel for young adults following eight-year-old Latasha Gandy and her mischievous puppy Ella Fitzgerald. Ella's puppy antics are almost completely out of control; Latasha must work hard to train Ella to be an obedient dog, even as she deals with the daily pressures of school and the repercussions of her mother's difficult new job. A handful of black-and-white illustrations enhance this heartwarming story about an African-American girl and her canine friend learning what it means to grow up and be responsible, together.
 

Midwest Book Review

August 2011


Nancy Atwell said it best, “The job of adults who care about KIDS is to move heaven and earth to put that book into a child’s hands.” Up until last week I had no clue who Michael Scotto was, but after reading his book “Latasha and the LIttle Red Tornado” I can say that his book deserves to be in the hands of young readers.

Their is no doubt in my mind that Latasha has a chance to become a huge hit in my classroom. The protagonist in this story is an black third grade girl living in Pittsburgh.  Students will immediately fall in love with Latasha in the first few pages as they are introduced to her spunk.  Latasha is a character full of live, thoughts, hopes and dreams.  She jumps off the page and into your heart.
I think that this book deals with so many issues that make it relatable to young readers.  Here are a few:
1. Single parent home
2. Wanting to feel grown up
3. Having to have to spend a lot of time at a babysitters
4. Making friends
5. Being honest
6. Problems juggling responsibilities
Many more, you get the point.
Oh yeah, this book will throw you for a loop that you never see coming! We all love that right?
In my opinion we do not have enough middle grade books where the main character is a black female, and in many of the books that do have a black female main character, the book often focuses on racism and civil rights.  I know that racism is still a huge issue in the world that we live in, but at the same time young black females need to know that their is more to them then just the color of their skin.  I hope that this doesn’t sound wrong coming from a “white dude”, but I know that readers at times want to read books with characters that look like them, and deal with things they deal with, and I do not feel like the young female black population has enough characters like Latasha.
(If I was off base at all in the previous paragraph please leave a comment.  I would love to become more educated in this area.)
If you are looking for a great read with a strong theme and unforgettable characters please give author Michael Scotto’s book a chance.  You will not regret it. That is a promise.

-sharpread  

Colby Sharp
August 16, 2011


LATASHA AND THE LITTLE RED TORNADO is the story of Latasha, an eight year old girl who lives with her mother and her dog.  Latasha is feeling a little bit grown up because now that she is 8, she is trying to be more mature.  Latasha's dog (Ella, named after Ella Fitzgerald) is past the puppy stage--she is two years old and still gets into trouble.  Latasha is worried about this and works hard to help Ella learn to behave.

In the meantime, Latasha's mother finally gets a new job as a nurse's assistant but her hours are long and Latasha has to be "young lady sat" by their elderly landlady, Mrs. Okocho. Latasha is not overly happy about this.

I loved Latasha. She is a great new character for middle grade readers. She is a girl with spunk and personality.  Her struggles and stresses are very believable and she handles most of them with grace and humor.  Latasha's relationship with her dog is great.  You can't help but fall in love with Ella--the trouble making not-so-little puppy. Latasha also deals with some issues of friendship and school struggles throughout the story.

I read this book in one sitting.  I am always thrilled to find a new middle grade or series book character for transitional readers.  I know how important series and short chapter books are at this stage and I liked Latasha almost immediately. I loved the community around Latasha. I loved the relationships Latasha had with her mother and her landlady.  Latasha's teacher is also part of her community and I loved her relationship with him. The classroom seemed a little traditional (book reports, book contests, etc.) but the relationship between Latasha and her teacher was a good one.

Latasha is African American. I am not sure that is mentioned in the book but it is depicted in the illustrations.  I am always shocked at the fact at how atypical this is for series and early chapter books. So I am glad to see that this is changing.

The book is short--132 pages. The print is a bit small so it isn't as short as it sounds but it is one that I see 3rd/4th graders reading pretty easily.  The author/illustrator also uses paw prints between scenes in the book. I love that support for readers that do not have that much experience with chapter books.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book. For me, it is almost always about the characters and I really liked these characters. It seems to me that this would make a perfect series--I know when I finished the last page, I wanted to read more about Latasha.  The book is due out in November by Midlandia Press. So glad we had a chance to read it early. I am excited to share it with students in the fall:-)  

A Year of Reading 
July 25, 2011

About the Author

Twenty-eight-year-old Michael Scotto has worked as a filmmaker, a saxophone player, and an engineer's assistant, but his true passion has always been writing. He earned a degree in creative writing from Carnegie Mellon University in 2004, and his M.F.A in dramatic writing there in 2007. Today, he is the author of over twenty picture books for young readers. In his spare time, he enjoys cooking and photography. In 2011, Mr. Scotto was honored by Pittsburgh Magazine as one of the "Pittsburgh 40 Under 40," which recognizes young difference makers in the southwestern Pennsylvania region. He currently lives in Pittsburgh with his wife and their very naughty dog. Latasha and the Little Red Tornado is his first novel.

More About the Author

Michael Scotto has worked as a filmmaker, a saxophone player, and an engineer's assistant, but his true passion has always been writing. A graduate of Carnegie Mellon University, Mr. Scotto is the author of the "Tales of Midlandia" picture book series. His debut novel, "Latasha and the Little Red Tornado," was released by Midlandia Press in November 2011. His second novel, "Postcards from Pismo," was published in May 2012. A new novel, "Latasha and the Kidd on Keys," will be released in Spring 2013. He currently lives in Pittsburgh, PA with his wife and their very naughty dog. In 2011, he was honored for his contributions to the Western Pennsylvania region as one of the "Pittsburgh 40 Under 40."

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
5 star
3
4 star
1
3 star
1
2 star
0
1 star
0
See all 5 customer reviews
I purchased this book for use with my classroom.
DPS
It created a nice conversation between us and really got her to think and feel while reading.
Rhonda
There are subtle lessons all throughout the story.
Sandra K. Stiles

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Sandra K. Stiles on November 18, 2011
Format: Paperback
This was a wonderful book. Kids will definitely be able to identify with Latasha and some of the problems she has. Not only does she have a puppy full of energy, but she has to worry about the puppy bothering their landlady. She worries about her mother's new job and about not spending a lot of time with her mother. Latasha learns a lot about friendships both with the old and young. There are subtle lessons all throughout the story. The problems in the story such as a single parent home, and Latash staying with the landlady as her babysitter are some of the same problems my very own students face. The characters are all very believable and well developed.

I am proud to put this book on my shelves at school. I am sure this book will be enjoyed by my sixth graders no matter what their reading level. I've head the name of the author before and will definitely check into his other books. After all, in addition to students who need quality books, I have nine grandkids that need quality books to read.

Between the time I read this book and was able to finally post this review here, The book has not made it back to my shelves. It is turned in and immediately snatched up by someone else. We've gone to a sticky note on the check out card so people know who gets it next. Great job Michael
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Rhonda on March 14, 2012
Format: Paperback
My daughter would not put this book down! It created a nice conversation between us and really got her to think and feel while reading. I cannot wait to see more books from Mr. Scotto. I gave it to her teacher and she as well thought it was a great read. She has it in her class library for others to enjoy!!
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By cloudscome on September 20, 2012
Format: Paperback
Life is complicated for a girl living in a small apartment with a working mom and a wild little dog. Latasha is handling it though, and even when she gets down and worries about her mom or her dog or her friendship troubles, she always bounces back with new energy and a new plan. I like how the story presents life for a third grader as it is; full of troubles and uncertainty, but also full of new ideas and friends (and grown ups) around to help out in a difficult moment. This is a great book for second and third graders. I think it would make a great book club selection, especially for kids who love dogs.

Scotto has a sequel coming out next year titled Latasha and the Kidd on Keys. Can't wait to see it!
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By DPS on May 28, 2012
Format: Paperback
I purchased this book for use with my classroom. The sweet and sassy Latasha and her little tornado friend captured our hearts and imaginations.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Mundie Moms & Mundie Kids Book Reviews on March 6, 2012
Format: Paperback
This is such a heart warming, wonderful story for younger readers. It's a story kids will be able to relate to, and one they'll enjoy spending time with as they get to know Latasha, the story's main character. Young Latasha, who's now eight years old has a lot to deal with. She has an unruly faithful pup named Ella Fitzgerald (named after Latasha's favorite singer) who likes to do things puppies do like get into things they're not suppose to... meaning the trash and the down stairs neighbor/landlord's flowerbed. Not only does Latasha do the best she can to teach her friendly dog manners, she also tries to be a huge help to her single mother who's recently started a new job, and keep a good attitude about spending more time their elderly down stairs neighbor Ms. Okocho.

Latasha is such a wonderful, likable character to get to know. I adore her and her voice in this story. She felt like a realistic young girl, and she's someone I often times found myself wanting to give a hug to her and tell her everything would turn out all right. One of the things I loved in this story is the way author Michael Scotto wrote about Latasha's different situations. I was able to remember being eight and wanting to be looked at as a young lady vs a little kid, much like Latasha does. There's real life situations like dealing with school, being an only child, learning to raise a dog, being from a single parent home, friendship, honesty and being brave that are apart of this story. Each of these situations not only helped Latasha grow and mature as the story goes along, they're also real scenarios readers will be able to identify with.

Michael Scotto's writing in this book is fabulous! The voice for Latasha is honest, real and down right wonderful.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again