Monday, December 09, 2019

Recommended: "A Girl's Best Friend" by Cynthia Leitich Smith, in THE HERO NEXT DOOR

Cynthia Leitich Smith's "A Girl's Best Friend" is one of the stories in The Hero Next Door. Published in 2019 by Crown Books for Young Readers, its main character is a 12-year old named Sophie Bigheart who is Muscogee-Osage and a citizen of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation. She lives with her mom in a tiny apartment in Austin.

Sophie spends a lot of her free time looking at dogs on the animal shelter website, wishing she could get one--but that's against Miz Wilson's (their landlady) rules. Through their occasional visits, Sophie had learned that Miz Wilson's husband died the year before, and that they had a dachshund. It is clear that Miz Wilson is lonely.

Sophie's lonely, too, for a dog. Soon, Sophie and her mom are doing volunteer work at the shelter, walking and playing with the dogs. Miz Wilson--thinking they've adopted one--evicts them!

Then, Sophie comes up with a plan. By the end of the story, Miz Wilson has adopted a dog, Sophie's agreed to help take care of it, and Miz Wilson has decided to decrease their rent. It is a good solution for everyone. Set in the present day, with information about the main character's identity as a citizen of a tribal nation--and just the kind of story that resonates with a lot of kids--I'm pleased to recommend the story, and the book, too!

No comments: