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Charley's First Night Hardcover – October 9, 2012
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From School Library Journal
K-Gr 2-This comforting, sweet story of a puppy's first night in his new home is simply told and as warm and cozy as a blanket. When Henry Korn finds Charley one snowy evening, the little boy just knows that the pup wants to go home with him. His parents capitulate to their son's desire to keep the dog, making sure he knows that the puppy is his responsibility. Although Charley wants to sleep in Henry's room (says Henry), Mr. Korn gently affirms that the animal will spend the night in the kitchen. Henry is tender and loving toward his new charge, and children who have looked after their family pets will see a bit of themselves in the protagonist. During the night the puppy cries, and his young master dutifully looks after him, stopping at his parents' bedroom only to find them sound asleep. Of course, Charley ends up in Henry's bed, but who could look at such a compatible pair and be angry? The pencil and watercolor illustrations are set within soft, muted frames. From Charley's adorable face and poses to Henry's mother's reflection in a mirror as she looks at the pair asleep, the pictures have a timeless quality and beautifully complement the story.-Alison Donnelly, Collinsville Memorial Public Library, ILα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
*Starred Review* This one’s a heart melter. The blond tyke of a narrator, Henry Korn, finds a puppy in the snow. He just knows that the small wheat-colored dog is named Charley and that Charley wants the boy to carry him home. So he does. His parents are resigned to letting Charley stay as long as Henry is in charge of walking him (“I couldn’t wait to walk Charley every day forever”) and feeding him (ditto), but the one caveat is that Charley must sleep in the kitchen. Really? Henry and Charley both make a game effort that first night. Henry sets his puppy up with a teddy bear and a clock to keep him company. When Charley wakes up, Henry rushes to the kitchen, scoops him up, and shows him around the house. And the scenario repeats later in the night. Finally, both boy and dog are tuckered out. Sleep comes, but on Henrys bed—and a sweeter picture would be hard to imagine. Hest’s text has a real-world feel, especially in the scenes where Henry and Charley take a tour of the house. Oxenbury’s cozy depictions are occasionally staid, but impish Charley is so lovable, it’s hard not to go “aww” every time he appears in a spread. With a design as soft and lovely as its message, this book will make it tough to keep children from heading out in the snow to look for their own Charley. Preschool-Grade 1. --Ilene Cooper
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Top customer reviews
This is the book I have been waiting for. A warm, honest look at the innocence of a little boy and his love for his dog.
I will be using this one for K-2 grades all year. I can't wait for my next session to share this with teachers,parents and kids!