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Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Review: Jehan and the Quest of the Lost Dog


In Rosanne Hawke’s new novel for young readers, and companion to her previous book, Kelsey and the Quest of the Porcelain Doll, she returns again to Pakistan. 

Using the floods of 2010 as inspiration and the lead theme of survival, Hawke creates strong images with language and uses metaphors to illuminate her descriptions.

Jehan and his brother Amir are happy children until the early Monsoon rains catch them unawares. Mud home, belongings and the entire family are swept away by the sudden flood that swallows the area. The boys are separated from their parents and each other.

Carried away, Jehan manages to climb a tree and clings there for weeks, waiting for the waters to subside. He competes with monkeys for the few mangoes that serve to keep his body alive. But his mind is strong and he’s determined to find his brother and parents. He encounters danger when a suspect adult tries to coax him down from the tree and into his boat.

He saves the dog Lali from the floodwaters and this proves to be a strengthening move for the boy, as the intelligent dog has also lost her way back to her new born pups and her owner, Beti. Both long to be reunited with their family.

The chapters are shared points of view from Jehan and Lali. Both begin a quest to find their families. The quest which becomes an adventure full of discovery, is told in a strong, well-constructed narrative and storyline.

Jehan and the Quest of the Lost Dog explores the lives of children of other cultures in a subtle yet intimate fashion. It shows the resourcefulness of the young, and showcases how cleverly they adapt to difficult situations, and how they rise to the challenge of sudden change.
 
Title: Jehan and the Quest of the Lost Dog
Author: Rosanne Hawke
Illustrator: Briony Stewart  
Publisher: UQP, $14.95
Publication Date: September 2017
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9780702259609
For ages: 8+
Type: Junior Fiction


 

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