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Mrs. Mack Hardcover – October 26, 1998

4.7 out of 5 stars 15 customer reviews

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Hardcover, October 26, 1998
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Girls who love horses will strongly identify with Polacco's (Thank You, Mr. Falker) autobiographical story of a climactic Michigan summer. Ten-year-old Pat is thrilled when her father decides she's old enough to learn to ride. Pat assumes she is getting a horse of her own, but instead her father takes her to "Dogpatch," the poor area of his town. There they find a rundown stable owned by Mrs. Mack, a Southerner in snakeskin boots who, Pat's father says, "has forgotten more about horses than most people will ever know in a lifetime." Mrs. Mack takes Pat under her wing, and through her daily visits Pat learns how to forge relationships, not only with a difficult horse, but with two tough stable hands and Hap, Mrs. Mack's aloof neighbor. Finally, Pat realizes her dream of riding Penny, the beautiful mare that later becomes her own. Pat's inviting first-person narration allows readers to come along for the ride, as she slowly conquers her fears. While the length and density of the text tends to give equal weight to the events, both large and small, Polacco's drawings convey the emotions of each scene, adding emphasis to pivotal points. A moving afterword recounts the relationship between Pat and Penny after the summer's end. Ages 4-8.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal

Grade 3-4-Another striking reminiscence from Polacco's childhood. This book relates the events of the author's 10th summer when she was taught horseback riding by the rough-and-ready Mrs. Mack. The narrative describes the bonds that formed between Patricia, a mare named Penny, and the residents of Dogpatch, a neighborhood in Lansing, MI. The realistic illustrations are in true Polacco form-pencil outlines selectively filled with watercolors. The artist has even treated her fans to two double-page spreads at critical junctures in the text. In appearance this is a picture book, but there are many full pages of text. Highest interest would lie with middle elementary horse lovers, but the format may discourage them from borrowing it. It would, however, lend itself nicely as a read-aloud for this age level. A touching story filled with loving detail.
Christy Norris Blanchette, Valley Cottage Library, NY
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 6 - 10 years
  • Grade Level: 1 - 5
  • Lexile Measure: 610L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Philomel (October 26, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0399231676
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399231674
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 0.4 x 10.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,153,051 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is another touching tale from pollacco. I am trying to read all her books. this is not one of my favorites so far because one of the characters was a bit underdeveloped but it was still great and I'm glad I read it. Patricia pollacco is a genius and all her books are special, it's just some are so good they make the other ones pale a bit. My favorite of hers so far is thunder cake, the christmas tapestry, gifts from the heart, and the bee tree.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Absolutely love this book. Typical of Patrica Polacco, it has rich relationships between a cast of characters. Her books always have rich vocabulary. I use this book year after year in my classroom. This purchase was a gift for my adult daughter who shares Mrs. Mack's love for teaching younger equestrians.
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Format: Hardcover
This book shows the lines of friendships reach farther than we can possibly know. Some reach through to adulthood. Also, some of our most uncomfortable feelings can be overcome with dedication to another person or creature. Ms. Polacco comes through with another heart-wrenching story from her childhood of a child overcoming a problew in a very positive manner.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book fits the bill for teaching my 4th graders memoirs. The story is delightful and full of descriptive words to help students write their own memoirs, a requirement of common core state standards.
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Format: Paperback
Most people, I believe, love animals, even if they don't want to keep one. Horses can be beautiful but scary because of their size and power. They have varied personalities, just like people. This is a loving-and-learning horse story from the childhood of the author: How much can be considered fiction and how much autobiographical we don't know. Regardless, it's filled with emotion, well-liked characters and has a hard-to-put-down feeling--even though, with just a little elaboration, it takes about 45 minutes to read from cover to cover. Personally, I couldn't hold back the tears at certain points. If reading to a class, I suggest breaking the story up, stopping at what seems like unnumbered chapter headings.

Autobiographical Tale: Grades 3 and Up
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By A Customer on July 16, 2000
Format: Hardcover
Dear Readers,
The author writes about things that deal witheveryday life. Life is sometimes difficult and sometimes easy.Everyone needs to remember that some things are really worth waiting for in life.
We have all been kids at one point in our life. Kids tend to want everything and anything. They need to be taught by good role models how to acquire the things that are most important to them in life. This book gives us insight into how one goes about getting what one wants in life. Nothing is free in life.
Teachers could use this book to teach a lesson on working hard to accomplish life's goals. Children could be asked to brainstorm about the goals they have in mind for their own lives. Children could be asked to interview a relative to find out about a goal that they worked hard to obtain. Another lesson that could be taught with the help of this book is caring for someone other than you. This book showed how animals and people could care for one another. Children enjoy doing activities that involve their own pets or just animals in general. Other topics such as death, sickness, and friendship could be taught with the use of this book. This book has an endless amount of topics that could be discussed and developed through the cooperation of the teacher and students.
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Format: Paperback
I checked this book out from our library in intentions of reading it either to my 2 year old granddaughter or to my special needs teen age son. Both of which loves animal books. But when I got it, it was a big 'longer' and more detailed than either of them can follow. So I kept it and I sat and read it myself. Oh my, have the tissues handy in the end and I'm not one who cries easily. And what made it even nicer was in the very end there is a note from the author and the girl and situation of the story was her! She told her own story when she was 10 years old and how she learnt more than just 'riding' horses. This story even though is a child's book I would encourage anyone that likes horses, animals, or just people learning compassion and caring and treating each other the way they should. You will quickly get into the story and want to know more. I read it within 15 minutes so wouldn't take very long at all to read, and you will have a tear(s) in your eyes and your heart just full afterward
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By Michel Como on September 25, 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It was in great condition! Better than what I thought I was going to receive!
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