Bound To Stay Bound

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Full Text Reviews:

Booklist - 04/15/2013 Narrated by a 10-year-old horse with wide eyes and evident pride in his work, this picture book about a mounted-police unit features a girl lost in Times Square. Don’t worry; it’s not scary—Finnegan is such an upbeat horse-narrator that even the youngest readers will sense that he is coming to the rescue. The story begins with Finnegan introducing himself and his beanpole partner, T. J. Fox. He discusses the people they see on their Times Square beat, including the fruit and vegetable seller, the traffic officer, and tourists from all over. Manders’ cartoonlike watercolors, featuring lots of bulbous noses and toothy smiles, make Times Square seem like a hectic but friendly multicultural universe. When a little girl from Wyoming gets separated from her group, Finnegan and Fox set off to look for her. In an unlikely but picture-book-perfect twist, Finnegan wanders off to look down an alleyway and finds the scared child. His heroics bring him fame—and, even better, an apple. The last page features further mounted-police information, including worldwide use, training, and horse retirement. - Copyright 2013 Booklist.

School Library Journal - 04/20/2013 K-Gr 2—Finnegan, a horse, and his partner, Officer Fox, patrol the Times Square area of New York City as part of the NYPD Mounted Unit. While on duty, they stop to talk with street vendors, locals, and a group of children from Cheyenne, Wyoming. Finnegan is impressed with the students' knowledge of horses. One young girl in particular, Maggie, presses her head against Finnegan's face and pets his mane. Later that day, the partners get a call that a child is missing. Officer Fox dismounts to follow a lead. Finnegan breaks his trained behaviors and moves down an alley when he hears a rustling. There, he finds Maggie hiding in a box because she got separated from her group and became frightened when she heard so many strangers calling her name. Finnegan is a hero. He delights in the applause and cheers as he walks back through Times Square to see his name and picture on the digital news sign. The story is told by Finnegan and contains some excellent, horse-specific vocabulary and facts about the Mounted Unit in NYC. However, the book is long on text, and some elements of the story are extraneous to the central plot. The vivid illustrations capture the bustle of the Big Apple and the good-natured relationship that Finnegan and Officer Fox have with their city.—Lindsay Persohn, University of South Florida, Tampa - Copyright 2013 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.

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