Hooper's a Hit at Publishers Weekly!
"Jimmy, a one year-old yellow lab based on the author's dog, offers a harrowing first-person perspective on Hurricane Katrina. When his family doesn't return home, Jimmy nearly drowns and the trauma makes him lose his bark. Finally rescued from the roof of a floating shed, Jimmy is taken to an animal shelter, then sent to live with a family in New York City, where he is renamed Hooper. Paley fills her gentle first novel with engaging animal characters, including an otter that helps Hooper brave the hurricane and a hard-knocks mutt with one eye. Hooper's voice is humorous and good-natured ("Garbage? Are you kidding? This is a banquet hall. I can smell the hot dog from here"), but Paley balances her anthropomorphizations with genuine descriptions of his and other dogs' behaviors. When Hooper recovers his bark during a New York lightning storm ("No storm has the right to do this to me.... Hey! I don't have to be hiding anymore. Hear me?") readers may be similarly moved to stand up to their fears. Appended photos feature the real-life Hooper with Paley's family. Ages 8–12. (June)"
We're loving our visits with young readers and dog fans!
"Based on a true story, this novel is a touching tale of a rescue dog. It chronicles Hooper’s scary ordeal of being stranded, his rescue, and his introduction to a family whose father–still mourning the loss of his own beloved dog–is reluctant to welcome a new pet. The beginning may be a little intense for more-sensitive readers, but the book has a happy ending, and kids looking for dog stories will love it. The Hurricane Katrina aspect is interesting and could lead to good discussion. Children will enjoy the pictures of the real Hooper in the back matter. A good purchase for most collections."
ELIZABETH SWISTOCK, Jefferson Madison Regional Library, Charlottesville, VA
SCHOOL LIBRARY JOURNAL
Here's what others are saying:
If you're finding it a struggle to keep your elementary school child reading this summer, try putting a copy of Jane Paley's "Hooper Finds a Family: A Hurricane Katrina Dog's Survival Tale" in front of him or her.
"The cover features an irresistible image of a yellow Labrador puppy. Inside, readers will find themselves drawn into the tale of Jimmy, a pampered pet left to fend for himself when his owners flee a storm bearing down on Lake Charles, La.
Paley, a broadcast producer, writes compellingly but cleanly, always moving the action forward without maudlin asides. My rising second-grader plowed eagerly through the 144-page chapter book, by turns scared, sad and happy for Jimmy as he confronted a hungry bobcat, met a new caretaker whose husband was resisting the idea of a Katrina dog, and finally settled into a loving home.
Parental heads-up: The action in "Hooper Finds a Family" is dramatic but not unduly scary; there are no "bad guys." Sensitive children (and adults) may be bothered by a scene in which a famished Jimmy devours several baby birds, but it's over in a couple of paragraphs and is not graphic."
"I found this story of a dog left during Hurricane Katrina to be a overwhelming story of strength, courage and love. I highly recommend reading this book not only for yourself but for your children. It will teach them an underlying lesson of how to be strong in times where you are down."
JENNIFER'S DEALS BLOG
"HOOPER FINDS A FAMILY" is 23 chapters of total reading enjoyment for young readers, dog-lovers and anyone who wants to read a story about determination, courage and the will to survive.
"This was a great book and the my three sons were in love with this tale and the lovable pup Hooper. It makes a great addition to our family library."
"From Jimmy to Hooper, from Lake Charles, La., to New York City, this deeply engaging narrative is a celebration of life, its steep challenges and stark contrasts...An uplifting, yet sobering read, “Hooper” reflects a tough realism and a resilient can-do spirit into an inspiring lesson of hope and heart."
SEATTLE KENNEL CLUB
"A heartwarming story about moving forward after trauma and loss by making space for new loved ones and new possibilities."
“Courageous, brave, feisty and full of spunk this amazing dog never gives up despite any obstacles that come his way… Hooper is one special dog that everyone will fall in love with.”
FRAN LEWIS Bookpleasures.com
"'Hooper is a warm, generous, dramatic and often humorous coming-of-age adventure story that reminds readers of all ages that the gulf separating dog and master is not so great after all. Both want safety, a warm pillow to sleep on, a regular meal, and perhaps most of all love. Jane Paley's wonderful book is especially full of love."
VERNE GAY Newsday