Meet the girl who loves ALL animals


Lulu and Mellie are more than just cousins. They are inseparable friends. This year, Lulu's dad rented a cottage by the sea. If this was supposed to be a relaxing vacation, it wasn't starting out that way. When Lulu's father turned onto the pot-hole filled road leading up to the cottage, Sam almost got carsick, and pieces of Mellie's kite-building kit were tossed and lost. The cottage owner was less than hospitable. Then, the dog from the sea came out from behind the dunes and stole Sam's dog food. No one had anything nice to say about the dog from the sea, but Lulu is convinced she can tame him. Will she?

Reader Enjoyment Factors:

Humor and realism combine in this fun story for animal lovers.

Content Awareness Factors:

Mellie and Lulu made some dangerous choices climbing out the window to feed the dog, and then later to fly Mellie's kite. The author missed a great opportunity to help children better understand the impact of these kinds of decisions. She could easily do it without being heavy-handed or overdoing it.

Parent Reaction

Lulu and Mellie are fun to be with. Lulu adores animals, and by the end of the first chapter you can predict where this is going. The wholesomeness of it is refreshing, and I liked how Lulu and Mellie asked the townspeople about the dog to learn more. Great initiative. What I didn't like, though, is Lulu climbing out the window at night. She and Mellie are seven! I also thought the cottage owner's character was a little overdone for the minimal role that she played in the story.

Type of Book:
This is an illustrated chapter book for transitional readers.
Educational Themes:

Even though this is a story for young readers to build their skills, there are other ways to share this book. It would be fun to share before or during a vacation, or you might find ways to make a kite of your own like Mellie did. There are themes of creative problem solving and friendship, as well as opportunities to talk about safety, choices, and consequences.

Reading Level:
Recommended Age To Read By Yourself:
9 and Up
Recommended Age To Read Together:
5 to 9
Purchase Recommendation:
Borrow. Lulu and Mellie are great characters and they have fun adventures. The books are worth reading, but they aren't ones you'd keep in your permanent personal library.

Title Lulu and the Dog from the Sea

Lulu Series, Book 2

Author Hilary McKay
Publisher Albert Whitman & Company © 2013
Illustrators Priscilla Lamont
ISBN 9780807548202
Material Hard Cover
Cost $13.99
Genres Family
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