Toby’s Story

Starscape/Tor/Forge/. (A Dog’s Purpose Puppy Tales). May 2019. 192p. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9780765394989.
Gr 4-6–This addition to the “A Dog’s Purpose Puppy Tales” series is told from the perspective of Toby, a beagle who is trying to figure out his purpose. His littermates were adopted, but Toby was left behind because he doesn’t like to run and chase like the other pups. Due to his quiet nature, he is adopted by Mona and her mother, Patsy, who works in a nursing home. Mona plans to train him to be a therapy dog. Toby starts his time at the nursing home quietly, but after a trip to the vet resolves a health issue, he starts to run and chase like the beagle that he is, getting him in trouble with Patsy’s boss. When he’s not causing trouble, Toby makes connections with the residents including Dorothy, who throws him a ball, and Grandad, whose grandson Trent runs with Toby. While Cameron does a good job of showing how dogs can provide comfort to elderly patients, readers will need to suspend disbelief, as the portrayal of how a dog would be trained to work in a nursing home is unrealistic.
VERDICT A heartwarming tale for animal lovers and fans of the “A Dog’s Purpose” series

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