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Hotel for Dogs by Lois Duncan
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Hotel for Dogs (1971)

by Lois Duncan

Other authors: Leonard Shortall (Illustrator)

Series: For Dogs (book 1)

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What ages would I recommend it too? – Five and up.

Length? – An evenings read.

Characters? – Memorable, several characters.

Setting? – Real world, small town.

Written approximately? – 1971.

Does the story leave questions in the readers mind? – Ready to read more.

Any issues the author (or a more recent publisher) should cover? No.

Short storyline: A girl has to temporarily leave her dog behind. More dogs find her to console her, and lead her to console them.

Notes for the reader: A fun packed read where the bully meets his just end, for the moment anyway. ( )
  AprilBrown | Feb 25, 2015 |
Owning one dog is a lot of responsibility. Owning nine dogs is just impossible. When two siblings find nine stray dogs, they try to keep them a secret by housing them in a nearby abandoned building.
  prkcs | Aug 6, 2013 |
HOTEL FOR DOGS is the story of two children who have been re-located across the country to a suburban home on the East Coast and, encounter a number of dogs that complicate their lives. Lonely, living as guests in their fastidious great aunt's home, trying to fit in at school, and defending themselves against the neighborhood bully, twelve-year old Bruce and soon-to-be-eleven year old Andi struggle to adjust in/to their new environs. To matters more difficult, some dogs come to Bruce and Andi's attention, dogs that need care. Unable to shelter the dogs in their aunt's home, Bruce and Andi come up with a plan...

HOTEL FOR DOGS is a children's book that plays out fairly realistically when it comes to portraying the relationships between all the characters. The parents are authority figures, not best friends in disguise; The threats of the bully provoke concern; Bruce and Andi are average kids, not precocious child prodigies... The overall feel of the book is somewhat Disney-fied though: the children a have a bit more autonomy than children would have in real life, there's a surprise revelation about prissy old Aunt Alice and, of course a HEA ending.

Katherine Kellgren raises the bar when it comes to narrating children's titles. Character voices are delivered expertly and without condescension. The range of her character repertoire is excellent not only in terms of vocal range; but in terms of conveying the right emotion behind the lines. Ms Kellgren doesn't pull back and what she delivers is a compelling story. [So compelling, in fact that my eight-year old insisted on sitting in the car until the story had finished.]

There is no bad language, sex or extreme violence; but there is tension, white lies and, the kids do things they know are wrong. One of the dogs is hand-struck by a bully. Parents may need to explain film cameras, slide projectors and, animal shelters (why Bruce and Andi are reluctant to surrender the dogs to a shelter.)

Other Stuff: I purchased a digital dnload copy of this title through iTunes.

Redacted from the original blog review at dog eared copy, Hotel for Dogs; 06/23/2011
( )
  Tanya-dogearedcopy | Apr 4, 2013 |
Level One (Yellow) Graded Reader
  getreadingdmc | Jan 9, 2012 |
Reviewed by Sally Kruger aka Readingjunky for TeensReadToo.com

It was a fun trip back into the past to review Lois Duncan's HOTEL FOR DOGS.

I first read this heart-warming story about 10 years ago with my daughter. Now, with a few changes I've heard, it's a major motion picture.

In the original 1971 version, Liz and her brother, Bruce, leave their home in New Mexico to move to the east coast. Their father has accepted a new job, and they are temporarily moving in with Aunt Alice. It might be the beginning of a great new adventure, except Liz is extremely unhappy because her beloved pet, Bebe, has had to stay behind. Aunt Alice made it very clear that the dachshund was not welcome in her house since she is terribly allergic to dogs.

Shortly after their arrival, Liz and Bruce meet up with Jerry, the son of Aunt Alice's next-door neighbors. They actually meet Jerry's beautiful Irish setter first. Although the dog is gorgeous and seems quite friendly, Jerry is not. Liz is shocked to watch the cruel way Jerry treats his own dog. She feels awful for the dog and misses her own Bebe even more.

One day a shaggy little stray dog appears in Aunt Alice's yard. It hops up on the porch, and Liz begs her mother to let her bring it something to eat. Her mother forbids her to feed the dog, saying that if she does, it will never leave and that would be unfair to Aunt Alice. Later that evening, during a terrible thunderstorm, the little stray somehow ends up in the house and scampers upstairs, only noticed by Liz. By the time she is able to excuse herself to follow it upstairs, it is nowhere to be found.

The next day when she convinces Bruce to help her search for the dog, they discover it in a closet. But now instead of just one stray dog, there are three brand new puppies as well. What should they do? They can't possibly keep a dog and three puppies in the house when Aunt Alice sneezes if they just mention the word dog. Bruce agrees to keep the secret until they can figure out a place to keep the animals.

It doesn't take long for Bruce to realize the empty house at the end of the street might provide just the place for a new family of dogs. Liz couldn't agree more, and soon their plan to save a few animals becomes much more than they ever dreamed.

HOTEL FOR DOGS is a cute story geared to independent readers ages 9-12 and an excellent read-aloud for even younger audiences. Anyone with a soft spot for pets will enjoy this one.

**In the newer version of this book (released to come out along with the movie) the main character's name is Andi. ( )
  GeniusJen | Oct 11, 2009 |
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» Add other authors (4 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Lois Duncanprimary authorall editionscalculated
Shortall, LeonardIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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Liz and her brother wind up with nine stray dogs that need homes but must be kept a secret.

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