How to Steal a Dog by Barbara O’Connor

January 7th, 2011 by Brian Leave a reply »

“Sometimes the trail you leave behind you is more important than the path ahead of you.”

How to Steal a Dog is easy to read, yet spoke a challenge into my own life. So often I’m not thankful for what I have and this book, without making me feel guilty, reminded me of how fortunate so many of us are.

Main character Georgina starts out the book soon after her mother, brother, and her are thrown out of their house. They live in their car and have to park it somewhere new every two days so the police won’t hassle them. One day Georgina sees a reward poster for a lost dog and decides to steal a dog and wait for a reward to be offered.

Author Barbara O’Connor does a fantastic job of describing a hard situation without becoming preachy. We’re not guilted into liking Georgina; we care about her and yet we’re able to disagree with her decisions. O’Connor also adds very realistic details about what it’s like to have to take baths in the sink at McDonald’s or wash your clothes in the bathroom at Texaco. The adults are not portrayed as complete morons, which is sometimes a rarity in YA fiction, but the story still depends on the protagonist’s actions.

This book is another quick. enjoyable read. I don’t read that quickly and even I was able to finish it in one day. Definitely worth checking out. Also, if you’re interested in helping people in the same situation as Georgina, you might look at organizations like the House of Refuge or St. Mary’s Food Bank for a place to start.

24,550 students in Arizona were homeless last year.


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