________________ CM . . . . Volume XV Number 16 . . . . April 3, 2009

cover Sharing Snowy. (Orca Echoes).

Marilyn Helmer. Illustrated by Kasia Charko.
Victoria, BC: Orca, 2008.
61 pp., pbk., $6.95.
ISBN 978-1-55469-021-3.

Subject Headings:
Cats-Juvenile fiction.
Sharing-Juvenile fiction.

Grades 1-3 / Ages 6-8.

Review by Christine Torchia.

*** /4


Ali stared at the notice. There were some words she couldn't read. "Grandma, what does that say?" she asked.

Grandma looked where Ali was pointing. "'Loved Pet,'" she read. "'Owner Desperate. Please call Ruby Banks at 905-316-2204.'"

Ali followed Grandma around the store in a daze. She thought of Snowy, alone in the clubhouse. Was she missing Ali? Or was she missing her desperate owner? Loved pet. The words stung Ali's heart. Snowy was her loved pet now. It wasn't fair. It just wasn't fair.

Sharing Snowy is a delightful beginner chapter book about a young girl named Ali. Ali wishes her older brother, Jay, didn't have allergies and her baby brother, Ben, would stay out of her stuff. Most of all, Ali wishes she could have a kitten of her very own.

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    Ali's birthday is coming up, and Grandma wants to buy her something special. Ali asks for a kitten but already knows she can't have one because of Jay's allergies. Ali loves to visit her best friend Sam and help him look after his two cats, but it's not the same as having one of her own. When Ali's family moved into her house, Ali and Jay begged their father to turn the old shed in the woods out back into a playhouse. Jay discovered that playing in the woods bothered his allergies, and the playhouse soon became just Ali's. One day, while Ali is out at the playhouse, she discovers that a furry creature has snuck inside through the window that Sam accidentally left open.

     When Ali realizes it's a lost cat, she is thrilled! Naming it Snowy, Ali vows to take care of the cat just like she has helped Sam take care of his cats. Ali keeps the beautiful white cat a secret, sneaking it food scraps and water from the house. She soon learns that Snowy has more needs, and she works hard to keep Snowy safe in the playhouse as well as providing a bed and litter box for Snowy. Ali loves Snowy but feels sad that the cat is alone in the playhouse a lot. She is afraid that, if anyone finds out about Snowy, she will have to give her up, but she also knows Snowy is anxious to get outside. Grandma arrives to take Ali shopping for a special birthday gift. At the store, Ali notices a sign for a lost cat who looks a lot like Snowy. She asks Grandma to read the sign and is sad to realize that Snowy already has a owner. Throughout her time in the store, Ali is lost in thought and Grandma notices. Ali confides in Grandma, and together they decide Snowy needs to go home.

     Grandma and Ali take Snowy back to her owner, an elderly lady named Ruby. Although Ali is sad to say good bye to Snowy, she sees how much Ruby loves the cat Ruby calls Snowflake. Thrilled to have Snowflake home, Ruby invites Ali to visit Snowflake anytime she wants! Ali is more than thrilled to share Snowflake. Ali is so excited - this is the best present of all!

     Sharing Snowy is a wonderful story written in small easy to read chapters. Any child beginning to read chapter books would feel very confident reading this story.


Christine Torchia, who lives in Winnipeg, MB, is an Early Childhood Educator / Educational Assistant and mother of two elementary school children.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.

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The Manitoba Library Association
ISSN 1201-9364
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