The Blue House Dog

Image of The Blue House Dog
Release Date: 
July 31, 2010
Peachtree Publishers
Reviewed by: 

The Blue House Dog is a picture book that tells the tale of a boy and a dog. They may belong to two different species, but they’re two souls reaching out for the same goal: connecting with someone.

The Blue House Dog, graphically illustrated, is the story of Bones, a German Shepherd mix. He lives in a small town outside of the city. When his elderly owner dies, Bones is left to fend for himself. His former home—his blue home—is torn down, and he’s just a common stray dog to everyone in the neighborhood—everyone but one: Cody.

Cody is a young boy who knows what it is to lose someone you love. He struggled with the sudden loss of his dog that became ill and remains close to his heart. When Bones comes to his attention, he discovers a resonance with the stray as he works to gain his confidence.

This book, in simple, straightforward prose, deftly relates how we all, no matter who or what we are, desire to love and trust in another. And sometimes, that love and trust develops through time and the encouragement of those who believe in us.

The author was inspired to write this book based on a true story of a stray dog in Queens, New York, that was the subject of a 2001 New York Times article. Blumenthal and Gustavson have come together to produce a lovely picture book for ages 4–8 that is warm and provides a great catalyst for discussing loss, trust, and love with young children.