The Incredible Life of Balto

Meghan McCarthy. Knopf, $16.99 (40p) ISBN 978-0-375-84460-7
Having previously highlighted high-profile animals in City Hawk: The Story of Pale Male and Seabiscuit the Wonder Horse, McCarthy turns to Balto, the famous sled dog, to explore his life after the spotlight stopped shining. After making an arduous journey to deliver medicine to combat diphtheria in Nome, Alaska, in 1925, Balto and his owner at first enjoy fame. But after a statue and a starring movie role, Balto's fortunes change when he's sold to a vaudeville act. Though McCarthy's caricature-styled acrylics at times seem incongruous for the subject matter—the googly eyes on both dogs and people may even elicit laughter in some scenes—they temper the grim parts of the tale. Straightforward narration keeps this picture-book biography moving toward its happy conclusion: "With the help of [a] Cleveland newspaper, word of Balto's and the other dogs' poor treatment spread. Children donated their pennies, people passed around collection hats at their jobs" in a successful bid to bring the dog team to a local zoo. It's an accessible introduction to the story of Balto, and a reminder of the fickle nature of fame. Ages 5–8. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 05/23/2011
Release date: 08/01/2011
X
Stay ahead with
Tip Sheet!
Free newsletter: the hottest new books, features and more
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Email Address

Password

Log In Lost Password

PW has integrated its print and digital subscriptions, offering exciting new benefits to subscribers, who are now entitled to both the print edition and the digital editions of PW (online or via our app). For instructions on how to set up your accout for digital access, click here. For more information, click here.

The part of the site you are trying to access is now available to subscribers only. Subscribers: to set up your digital subscription with the new system (if you have not done so already), click here. To subscribe, click here.

Email pw@pubservice.com with questions.

Not Registered? Click here.