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Reviewed by Karen Pirnot for Readers' Favorite
The Adventures of Little Dog Koko by J.R. Hardin is a small reader for early elementary aged children. Little Koko is a Shih Tzu who lived for awhile with a wonderful lady he called Mama. She took ill, and Koko was put into the care of Mama's nephew, an evil dog catcher who turned Koko loose to fend for himself. Koko had one adventure after another as he roamed the park looking for food, browsing the streets, escaping down a storm drain all in attempts to evade the dog catcher. He eventually finds a scraggly friend named Moochee, but after Moochee is captured by the dog catcher, Koko feels alone and scared. However, even in his darkest moment of fear, he is able to reach out and try to help an invalid dog who is his enemy.
There were a lot of themes in the book...resourcefulness, friendliness and overcoming fears...but the author was able to blend them together into a lovely story which will appeal to early elementary aged children. I would like to have seen larger type and more colorful illustrations to better keep the interest of the younger readers, and there were a couple of scenes which might frighten the younger child listener, but all in all, this is a story which most young readers will enjoy.