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Saving Owen's Toad

Saving Owen's Toad

by Juanita Havill

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal - School Library Journal
Gr 4-5Poor Owen is suffering from the proverbial ``little brother syndrome.'' As the youngest of three children, he feels bullied, looked down upon, overwhelmed, and always slighted. This situation is amplified by the fact that he and his brother Richard are represented as two stereotypically opposite types. Owen is gentle, kind, and loves animals. Richard would rather shoot them, and is bossy and domineering. When he thinks up a money-making venture of catching and selling toads to the neighbors, Owen stands up to his brother and sabotages the enterprise. Richard's personality is transformed after he feels responsible for an accident that forces Owen to have stitches in his leg. His main motive seems not to be remorse but fear that Owen will tell on him. This is a light, fast-paced read, but the older boy's complete turnaround is somewhat implausible and makes for sketchy characterization.Alexandra Marris, Rochester Public Library, NY
Mary Romano Marks
The bickering between nine-year-old Owen and his older brother, Richard, escalates into a full battle over a three-legged toad named Buffy. Richard has concocted a get-rich-quick scheme using toads for pest control, and he needs every available toad, including Owen's pet. Desperate to save Buffy from Richard's greedy clutches, Owen meets with disaster and winds up in the emergency room. After hiding the facts about Owen's accident from their parents, the brothers finally agree to respect their individual differences and make peace with one another. Havill deftly captures the warring yet loving relationship between siblings with opposite natures in this gentle story suggested for larger fiction collections.

Product Details

Hyperion Books for Children
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
5.93(w) x 8.58(h) x 0.63(d)
Age Range:
8 - 11 Years

Meet the Author

Juanita Havill and Anne Sibley O'Brien have collaborated on five previous stories about Jamaica and her friends. Ms. Havill lives in Cave Creek, Arizona, and Ms. O'Brien lives on Peaks Island, Maine.

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