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Kadohata, Cynthia.
CRACKER! : THE BEST DOG IN VIETNAM
New York : Atheneum Books for Young Readers, c2007
IL 5-8, RL 5.1
ISBN 1416906371

(2 booktalks)

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Booktalk #1

Bred as a show dog, Magnificent Dawn of Venus von Braun was a German shepherd destined for greatness until a broken leg took her out of contention and into the arms of a boy named Willie. Reminded of the landlord's no-pet policy, the heartbroken boy answers a newspaper ad and Venus, now called "Cracker," is accepted into a military canine unit to help soldiers sniff out booby traps in Vietnam. She and her handler, Rick Hanski, quickly bond and head to the front lines. Cracker and Rick's successful missions lead to more dangerous operations and they are ultimately separated during a siege. Critically wounded, Rick is sent home, not knowing what has become of Cracker. Will Cracker survive and will she and Rick be reunited?  (Pennsylvania Young Readerís Choice Awards nominee, 2008-2009)

Booktalk #2

Hi, My nameís Cracker! Iím a German Shepherd dog. I had to leave my first home, but what an adventure I  got instead. First basic training, where I learned to sniff out bombs and traps for rewards. Then all the way to a country my friend Rick calls Vietnam. He seems very excited to be here and to put the world in itís place. Iím not sure if I trust Rick yet, but I guess weíll have to if weíre going to be working together and keeping each other safe on missions like finding safe routes and locating prisoners. I think weíre going to get to know each other pretty well, maybe even rely on each other before all this is over. Iíll take good care of Rick if he takes good care of me. (Book Talk Author: Becker Parkhurst-Strout, The Colorado Blue Spruce Award nominee 2012)

SUBJECTS: German shepherd dog -- War use -- Fiction.
                    Dogs -- War use -- Fiction.
                    Vietnam War, 1961-1975 -- Fiction.
                    Human-animal relationships -- Fiction.

 
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