Moondog

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Overview


An irresistible Halloween tale by one of Scholastic Press' most gifted storytellers.

Michael McKenzie and his sister Hazel are awakened a few nights before Halloween by growling and howling. The next morning, they find their front yard in shambles, and a small bundle cowering on their doorstep. It's a puppy! A cute, darling little mutt they decide to call Angel. They soon learn, however, that Angel is no ordinary puppy, especially when the moon is full..... Hoffman and her ...

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Overview


An irresistible Halloween tale by one of Scholastic Press' most gifted storytellers.

Michael McKenzie and his sister Hazel are awakened a few nights before Halloween by growling and howling. The next morning, they find their front yard in shambles, and a small bundle cowering on their doorstep. It's a puppy! A cute, darling little mutt they decide to call Angel. They soon learn, however, that Angel is no ordinary puppy, especially when the moon is full..... Hoffman and her teenage son's delightful tale of the challenges of owning a were-puppy is charmingly illustrated by acclaimed artist Yumi Heo.

When a family adopts a well-behaved puppy that they name Angel, everything is fine until the next full moon.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
"One September, when the moon was full, in a town not far from here, where every day was sunny and every night was clear, a shadowy figure crept into the McKenzie's yard." Beloved author Alice Hoffman, her son Wolfe, and artist Yumi Heo have created a beguiling tale about an abandoned pup and the magic of a full moon.
Publishers Weekly
In the eerie beginning to this "werepup" tale by Hoffman (Aquamarine) and her son, two children discover the "garden... trampled, the porch steps chewed into splinters" and a "darling puppy" in a basket. The children artlessly name the white terrier Angel. When Angel demolishes their kitchen on a moonlit night, they follow his footprints to the home of a stock character the witchy, misunderstood spinster and there discover an antidote for "moondog" mania. Yet readers never witness Angel's Jekyll-to-Hyde transformation on Halloween, and what the text suggests, Heo's (Sometimes I'm Bombaloo) na ve art fails to provide. After a howling start, this tale unfortunately ends with a whimper. Ages 4-8. (Aug.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
Every child (or grown-up, for that matter) will want a moondog after reading about Angel, a special puppy who arrived mysteriously on the doorstep of young Hazel and Michael's home. Angel fits his name perfectly; he's the best dog Hazel and Michael have ever seen. But one spooky, stormy night with a full moon, chaos reigns in the children's house and they awake to find a mess in their kitchen. To their shock, Angel is missing, and all they can do is follow floury paw prints out into the night. This is the perfect book for young readers to enjoy during the Halloween season—or any time they are in the mood for some light-heartedness. Cool, repetitive designs are used throughout the illustrations, in which deep colors set the tone for a spooky story. Even the text has an edgy layout, balanced by backgrounds with textured paint strokes. All around, this book will be a winner with young readers. 2004, Scholastic Press, Ages 11 to 14.
—Cherie Ilg Haas
School Library Journal
K-Gr 3-One September, when the moon is full, a basket is left on the McKenzie family's porch. In it is the "sweetest, most darling puppy anyone had ever seen." Michael and Hazel have always wanted a dog, and even their parents cannot resist this Angel of a pooch. This is no ordinary puppy, however. After he disappears one night, the children learn that he changes into a destructive werepup when the moon is full. They follow his tracks to the spooky house of old Miss Eleanor Mingle and her even scarier old dog, Bunny. Not only do Hazel and Michael gain an understanding of their special pup, but they also come to understand the old woman. Together they plan a party for the next full moon, which just happens to fall on Halloween. Miss Mingle is reintroduced to the townsfolk, the weredogs are (mostly) controlled by the concoction that she developed for them to eat, and all ends well. Though the theme of not judging by outward appearance is none too subtle and readers may question some of the internal logic, the story is fluidly told. Heo's appealing illustrations combine bold colors, intricate patterns, and varied perspectives. They go a long way in enhancing the pacing and tension and in making this unusual Halloween tale (mostly) satisfying.-Maria B. Salvadore, formerly at District of Columbia Public Library Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780439098618
  • Publisher: Scholastic, Inc.
  • Publication date: 8/1/2004
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 7 - 10 Years
  • Product dimensions: 10.30 (w) x 10.20 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author


Alice Hoffman is the highly acclaimed author of over twenty novels for readers of all ages, including Illumination Night, Seventh Heaven, Practical Magic, Here on Earth, The Foretelling, Incantation, and, most recently, The Story Sisters and The Red Garden. Her previous novels for Scholastic Press are Aquamarine, which was made into a major motion picture, Indigo, and Green Angel, which Publishers Weekly, in a boxed, starred review, called "achingly lovely." She lives with her family outside of Boston. Visit her at www.alicehoffman.com.

Biography

Born in the 1950s to college-educated parents who divorced when she was young, Alice Hoffman was raised by her single, working mother in a blue-collar Long Island neighborhood. Although she felt like an outsider growing up, she discovered that these feelings of not quite belonging positioned her uniquely to observe people from a distance. Later, she would hone this viewpoint in stories that captured the full intensity of the human experience.

After high school, Hoffman went to work for the Doubleday factory in Garden City. But the eight-hour, supervised workday was not for her, and she quit before lunch on her first day! She enrolled in night school at Adelphi University, graduating in 1971 with a degree in English. She went on to attend Stanford University's Creative Writing Center on a Mirrellees Fellowship. Her mentor at Stanford, the great teacher and novelist Albert Guerard, helped to get her first story published in the literary magazine Fiction. The story attracted the attention of legendary editor Ted Solotaroff, who asked if she had written any longer fiction. She hadn't -- but immediately set to work. In 1977, when Hoffman was 25, her first novel, Property Of, was published to great fanfare.

Since that remarkable debut, Hoffman has carved herself a unique niche in American fiction. A favorite with teens as well as adults, she renders life's deepest mysteries immediately understandable in stories suffused with magic realism and a dreamy, fairy-tale sensibility. (In a 1994 article for The New York Times, interviewer Ruth Reichl described the magic in Hoffman's books as a casual, regular occurrence -- "...so offhand that even the most skeptical reader can accept it.") Her characters' lives are transformed by uncontrollable forces -- love and loss, sorrow and bliss, danger and death.

Hoffman's 1997 novel Here on Earth was selected as an Oprah Book Club pick, but even without Winfrey's powerful endorsement, her books have become huge bestsellers -- including three that have been adapted for the movies: Practical Magic (1995), The River King (2000), and her YA fable Aquamarine (2001).

Hoffman is a breast cancer survivor; and like many people who consider themselves blessed with luck, she believes strongly in giving back. For this reason, she donated her advance from her 1999 short story collection Local Girls to help create the Hoffman Breast Center at Mt. Auburn Hospital in Cambridge, MA.

Good To Know

  • Hoffman has written a number of children's books, including Fireflies: A Winter's Tale(1999), Horsefly (2000), and Moondog (2004).

  • Aquamarine was written for Hoffman's best friend, Jo Ann, who dreamed of the freedom of mermaids as she battled brain cancer.

  • Here on Earth is a modern version of Hoffman's favorite novel, Wuthering Heights.

  • Hoffman has been honored with the Massachusetts Book Award for her teen novel Incantation.
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      1. Hometown:
        Boston, Massachusetts
      1. Date of Birth:
        March 16, 1952
      2. Place of Birth:
        New York, New York
      1. Education:
        B.A., Adelphi University, 1973; M.A., Stanford University, 1974
      2. Website:

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