Tuesday, May 19, 2009


Title: Crash
Author: Mayra Calvani
Illustrator: Anna Pylypchuk
Publisher: Guardian Angel Publishing
Genre: Fiction – Picture Book
Ages: 2 to 6
Rating: 5 paws out of 5
Available at: amazon.com, guardianangelpublishing.com, Target.com, B&N.com and Borders.com

Synopsis: On his fifth birthday little Marcelo gets his wish, a Golden Retriever puppy of his own. He tries hard to be a good caretaker and learns to walk, groom and feed his new puppy, but there is a problem. Dad told him that a dog’s name should reflect his personality. So Marcelo spends several days getting to know his puppy until the right name comes along. Crash is a great book to read aloud to small children to introduce them to the responsibilities that come with owning a dog. The author’s language and sentence structure and pacing is perfect for the age group and appropriate for emerging readers as well.

The illustrator, Anna Pylypchuk was only 16 when she drew the pictures for Crash. It was a smart technique to make Marcelo’s eyes mirror the shape and size of the puppy’s. She is a talented artist who shows great heart in her work. Ms. Pylypchuk is bound to have a wonderful future.

The Trainer's View: Ms. Calvani beautifully captures how the bond between dog and human evolves. Here is a quote: “In bed at night, the puppy fell asleep with his head and paws on Marcelo’s stomach. Maybe the puppy liked the rise and fall of Marcelo’s chest. Or maybe he liked listening to the pounding of Marcelo’s heart. Maybe it reminded the puppy of his own mother’s heartbeat.” What a great description of the puppy knot, where the litter sleeps comforted, warm and happy intertwined among each other. Allowing children to have a voice in naming the new puppy is a great way to help bring them a feeling of ownership in a new pet. Read and discuss Crash with your children to prepare them for a new puppy in the home. Kudos for Ms. Calvani; she found the voice to teach children of this age just what they need.

I am pleased to report that Ms. Calvani is donating 50% of the proceeds from her royalties to Almost Heaven Golden Retriever Rescue and Sanctuary.

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