by Ron Koertge


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780763643775
Publisher: Candlewick Press
Publication date: 09/28/2010
Pages: 176
Sales rank: 884,831
Product dimensions: 5.20(w) x 7.60(h) x 0.60(d)
Lexile: 650L (what's this?)
Age Range: 14 - 17 Years

About the Author

Ron Koertge is the author of many celebrated novels, including MARGAUX WITH AN X, STONER AND SPAZ, THE ARIZONA KID, WHERE THE KISSING NEVER STOPS, and THE BRIMSTONE JOURNALS. He lives in South Pasadena, California.

Read an Excerpt

C.W. looks toward the screen door. "I was in this place once where the lady would tie off and shoot up while her old man made us paint the house. And all the other guys did was beat on me."

I look toward the big white front door. "What other guys?"

"This lady is not cooking for two when she can cook for three or four and make more money. That’s how it works, man. Where you been? There’s always other guys."

"Are they ever okay?" I ask.

"This is foster care, man. Nobody’s okay."


STRAYS by Ron Koertge. Copyright © 2007 by Ron Koertge. Published by Candlewick Press, Inc., Cambridge, MA.

From the Hardcover edition.

Customer Reviews

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Strays 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 13 reviews.
MDHarley on LibraryThing 10 months ago
Strays is a tragic story about a young teen who suddenly finds himself an orphan. He finds himself in a house that is strict but safe from the harms of other foster homes he hears about. The other teenagers in the foster home tell him the stories of being in the ¿system¿ for years and how much abuse they have suffered. Ted is a believable character he feels isolated before his parents death. He goes through school longing to create relationships with his peers but is unable to. When his parents die Ted finds himself in a foster home with two foster brothers. The eldest of the two brothers help Ted make connections with people. He finds that these strong human connections bring an end to his ability to talk to animals. This is a well written book for any teen even if they do not find that they relate to Ted or his situation. I think that this novel will help them to become more sympathetic to other teens situations. Overall I found this book and easy read with believable life like characters.
ohioyalibrarian on LibraryThing 10 months ago
Ted parents, who were just killed in a fiery car crash, owned a pet store, which somehow gave Ted the amazing ability to talk to animals. Now Ted feels like a stray himself, having to go into the foster care system. Join him as he learns to run with a new pack in this sensitive enlightening story about dealing with loss and growing up.
Alirambles on LibraryThing 10 months ago
A YA book about a boy who has to go into foster care after becoming an orphan. His relatonship with animals is interesting and well done. The human relationships are a little harder to follow because they're complicated and the book is written in the first person viewpoint of a character who has little understanding of those complications. I've seen that challenge handled better in other books. One complication Koertge does remarkably well, though, is the ambivalence Ted feels toward his parents (now dead). I rated this 3 1/2 stars for my own reading pleasure, because I hold YA books up to the same standards as adult books. If I were to rate it on a curve with other YA books, though, I'd give it another half-star or more.
stonelaura on LibraryThing 10 months ago
This is a heartwarming story about a misfit who never fit in and was always on the receiving end of the bullies¿ fist when he was the quiet son of two quirky pet shop owning parents, and who feels like he fits in even less now that he¿s an orphan living in a foster home. Ted has always taken solace in his conversations with animals. They communicate with him not only about their own lives, but to give him advice, comfort and guidance. But as he finally finds his little niche in life, when he¿s finally able to have a friendship with, not only his diverse foster housemates, but with an older girl at school, he realizes he can no longer hear his furry and feathered friends. As quirky as that sounds, Koertge¿s easy-going writing style and the words he puts into his characters¿ mouths make everything totally believable. And he doesn¿t hit the reader over the head with his premise - it¿s left to the reader to decide if Ted really can communicate ¿ or is it just a coping mechanism.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Zooey is a mutt. She is part Italian greyhound, part chihuahua, part ratterrier, and part pointer. She has black wiry fur with a white chest, belly, snout, tail tip, paws, legs, and back of neck. Her legs are speckled with black, as well as her snout. She has large brown eyes. She is mischevious and naughty, but she will come off as gentle when you get to know her. Her favorite food is chicken.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Is bored...
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have no idea.
agapegrace More than 1 year ago
This book details the emotions (or lack thereof) that Ted feels after his parents die. He enters the foster care system expecting for horrible things to happen to him, but he ends up finding a source of comfort and refuge amongst his new friends who gradually lead him away from needing to rely on the company of animals. I believe that this book is a truly honest look at loss presented authentically from a boy's perspective. This book will definitely be a great find for those dealing with loss or even those who feel left behind or left out. I do have some reservations about this book going into my personal classroom library due to the fact that it seems to be marketed toward more of a middle grade audience when, in fact, I believe that young adult audience is vastly more appropriate. The cover and size of the book look very middle grade, as does the cover art. Even some major plot and thematic elements would indicate middle grade - for example, a boy talking to dogs (and them talking back) to deal with his grief. However, more mature topics are contained inside - references to abuse, a weirdly insane foster-mother, and some instances of the F-bomb. I have nothing against those things since they come together to form something poignant and real, but it makes this book difficult for me to place. In a school or public library, I would have no problem acquiring and/or recommending this. It would reach and captivate a demographic that is always underrepresented, which is always a must.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Ao is this a person or a dog ?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Would like to join Fireclan Shecat... gray with bluish stipes and deep blue eyes Would like apprentice
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Hello? Hi mythstar
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I join if u suck my dyck