Bound To Stay Bound

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 Elvis and the underdogs
 Author: Lee, Jenny

 Illustrator: Light, Kelly

 Publisher:  HarperCollins
 Pub Year: 2013

 Classification: Fiction
 Physical Description: 300 p., ill., 21 cm.

 BTSB No: 556274 ISBN: 9780062235541
 Ages: 8-12 Grades: 3-7

 Service dogs -- Fiction
 Dogs -- Fiction
 Human-animal communication -- Fiction
 Sick -- Fiction
 Bullies -- Fiction
 School stories
 Family life -- Fiction

Price: $19.81

All his life Benji, now ten, has been sickly and he has long been targeted by the school bully, but after a seizure Benji gets a therapy dog that is not only big enough to protect him, it can also talk.

Elvis And The Underdogs

Accelerated Reader Information:
   Interest Level: MG
   Reading Level: 4.70
   Points: 9.0   Quiz: 163419
Reading Counts Information:
   Interest Level: 3-5
   Reading Level: 4.60
   Points: 16.0   Quiz: 61179

   Kirkus Reviews (-) (03/15/13)
   School Library Journal (+) (06/01/13)
   Booklist (+) (04/01/13)

Full Text Reviews:

Booklist - 04/01/2013 *Starred Review* This funny, unabashedly feel-good boy-and-dog story, features an unusually intelligent 200-pound Newfoundland and a manic, undersized 10-year-old with a preemie legacy of illnesses, allergies, accidents, and fainting spells. In the wake of an event diagnosed as an idiopathic epileptic seizure, Benji stages a frantic campaign to get a therapy dog rather than wear the world’s dorkiest safety helmet. His crusade bears unexpectedly humongous fruit. From an outsize shipping crate comes Parker Elvis Pembroke IV, who stuffily announces to Benji (everyone else hears only growls and barks) that he’s earmarked to be the president’s dog. However, he supposes he’ll stick around until the mistake is rectified. He’s telling the truth, but by the time the Secret Service shows up, at the book’s conclusion, Elvis and Benji have argued, conspired, joked, and bonded through a helter-skelter series of incidents ranging from a truly memorable classroom show-and-tell to a scary brush with anaphylactic shock. Author Lee (writer-producer at the Disney Channel’s Shake It Up) surrounds her well-articulated main characters with a colorful supporting cast. They include Benji’s clingy mother, who is caricatured; a bully, who is not; and a mini dog that has Elvis slathering bystanders with drool. This crowd-pleasing debut is definitely ready for prime time. - Copyright 2013 Booklist.

School Library Journal - 06/01/2013 Gr 4–6—Ten-year-old Benji has always felt like a misfit. He is small and has health concerns that include fainting in stressful situations. He has also become the favorite target of the class bully. When he suffers a seizure at school and ends up in the hospital, his only alternative to wearing a protective helmet is to get a therapy dog, to which his mother reluctantly agrees. However, Parker Elvis Pembroke IV, a Newfoundland, is not just a therapy dog; he is a talking dog whom only Benji can hear. With his arrival, Benji's life starts to change dramatically for the better. This lighthearted, enjoyable read features a variety of young people dealing with issues such as a pushy father and an overprotective mother. With the help of a wise and self-possessed pup, three "underdogs" become friends as they share some adventures, and the story has enough twists along the way to keep children interested.—Carol Schene, formerly at Taunton Public Schools, MA - Copyright 2013 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.

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