Lynch’s realistic pencil illustrations greatly amplify the story, their sensitively rendered human and dog expressions echoing the varying tones of the text…This quietly emotional tale is an ultimately triumphant one.
Ultimately a story about connection and trust, this offering also communicates a clear and impactful message, at times through cruel and upsetting moments, about animal treatment and the responsibility of pet ownership.
Lynch’s softly shaded pencil drawings capture the characters’ emotions and the story’s tone beautifully. Best known for the Artemis Fowl series, Colfer offers a simply written, realistic tale with plenty of human interest. Dog-lovers will find the jacket illustration irresistible.
Coaxed by a gentle and patient Patrick, Oz not only finds his bark again but also a loving friendship, but when an upheaval in Patrick’s life leaves the boy deflated and lost, will Oz be able to buoy his human pal through a trying time? The answer is, of course, yes, as any fan of pet/guardian stories knows, and while the classic rescue story is entirely predictable, it is on point in its earnestness, tugging heartstrings at just the right beats and giving readers an unabashedly rosy ending…Fans of Martin’s A Dog’s Life (BCCB 11/05) will find another canine to love here.
—Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books