Since my dog is turning 10 today...what animal-related books have you read? Which do you love? Do you have a favorite literary dog? (Snoopy, anyone?)
So, at first I thought I wouldn't be able to answer this question as I hate all books about animals (as the animal usually gets some sort of disease or gets in an accident and dies and all those wonderful pages of getting to know a pet and loving said pet are there just so you cry harder at the end...like Marley and Me) and then I realized not all animal books are like that and while I've read those requisite books that are (Old Yeller, Where the Red Fern Grows) I've read many that aren't, so here's my list of top books about animals. Oh and before I begin the list I don't have a favorite literary dog (Snoopy cartoons and books, except for Snoopy Come Home, are boring), but I do have a favorite literary...cat, Heathcliff. I own at least 8 Heathcliff books that I bought from Tabs or Scholastics in like 4th Grade. Ok, now on with the list. All summaries are from Barnes and Noble.
In Robert Westall's critically acclaimed novel, a courageous black cat journeys through war-torn England searching for her beloved master. "A moving and stirring novel".--School Library Journal.
During World War II a black cat journeys all across war-ravaged England in an effort to track down her beloved master.
"Move over, Dracula!"* Could the bunny really be a vampire? The Monroes found him in a movie theater while Dracula was playing. Now all their vegetables are turning white! Chester, the Monroes' cat, sets out to save the world from the vampire bunny. Harold the dog tries to stop Chester before it's too late! And the rest, as they say, is history.
In the more than twenty-five years since the publication of Deborah and James Howe's Bunnicula, the book and its six sequels have sold close to nine million copies, won several kid-voted state awards, and become contemporary classics. Now the first three books are available in this handsome boxed set with stunning art by C. F. Payne.
*New York Times
3. White Fang
"So he became the enemy of his kind, domesticated wolves that they were, softened by the fires of man, weakened in the sheltering shadow of man's strength." -White Fang
A companion novel to Jack London's The Call of the Wild, White Fang is the story of a wild dog's journey toward becoming civilized in the Canadian territory of Yukon at the end of the nineteenth century. White Fang is characteristic of London's precise prose style and innovation use of voice and perspective. Much of the novel is written from the viewpoint of the animals, allowing London to explore how animals view their world and how they view humans. White Fang relies on his instincts as well as his strength and courage to survive in the Yukon wilderness-despite both animal and human predators-and eventually comes to make his peace with man.
4. The Call of the Wild
A classic novel of adventure, drawn from London's own experiences as a Klondike adventurer, relating the story of a heroic dog, who, caught in the brutal life of the Alaska Gold Rush, ultimately faces a choice between living in man's world and returning to nature.
5. Because of Winn Dixie
One summer day, Opal goes into a supermarket and comes out with a scraggly dog that she names Winn-Dixie. Because of Winn-Dixie, her preacher father finally tells her ten things about her absentee mother, and Opal makes lots of unusual friends in her quirky Florida town. And because of Winn-Dixie, Opal grows to learn that friendship -- and forgiveness -- can sneak up on you like a sudden storm.
6. It's Like This, Cat
My father is always talking about how a dog can be very educational for a boy. This is one reason I got a cat.
Dave Mitchell and his father yell at each other a lot, and whenever the fighting starts, Dave's mother gets an asthma attack. That's when Dave storms out of the house. Then Dave meets Tom, a strange boy who helps him rescue Cat. It isn't long before Cat introduces Dave to Mary, a wonderful girl from Coney Island. Slowly Dave comes to see the complexities in people's lives and to understand himself and his family a little better.
7. National Velvet
The timeless story of spirited Velvet Brown and her beloved horse has thrilled generations of readers. And now the republication of this classic story in a fresh, up-to-date package will charm confirmed fans while captivating new ones. Fourteen-year-old Velvet is determined to turn her untamed horse into a champion and personally ride him to victory in the world's greatest steeplechase, the Grand National.
8. Ghost Horse
Emily Clark has just moved. She doesn’t like her new house, and she
doesn’t like her new town. But one night she wakes up to find a horse in her
backyard—a ghost horse! Where did he come from? And why is he haunting
Emily’s backyard? Only by solving the mystery can Emily set the ghost horse
Henry Huggins's dog, Ribsy, is hopelessly lost in a huge shopping mall parking lot. It's raining hard, the pavement is slick, horns are honking, and drivers are shouting. When Ribsy thinks he has found the Hugginses' new station wagon at last, he jumps in the open tailgate window and falls asleep, exhausted. When he wakes up find himself in the wrong car, lots of little girls pet him and make plans to give him a bath. All Ribsy wants to do is go home to Henry. Instead, he's about to begin the liveliest adventure of his life.
10. The Last Unicorn
From The Last Unicorn:
"The unicorn lived in a lilac wood, and she lived all alone. She was very old, though she did not know it, and she was no longer the careless color of sea foam, but rather the color of snow falling on a moonlit night. But her eyes were still clear and unwearied, and she still moved like a shadow on the sea..."
11. Millions of Cats
Wanda Gág's enchanting tale of the very old man who went off in search of the prettiest cat in the world for his wife and returned instead with millions to choose from has become an American classic, widely recognized as the first modern picture book. First published in 1928, it was a recipient of the 1929 Newbery Honor Book Award and has gone on to sell over a million copies. With its charming illustrations and rhythmic, sing-song refrain, Millions of Cats remains as beloved today as it was when it first appeared three-quarters of a century ago.