Southern Scribe
    our culture of storytelling


Children's Book Review    



Orville, A Dog Story
Story by Haven Kimmel
Pictures by Robert Andrew Parker
Clarion Books, 2003
Hardback, $15.00 (32 pages)
ISBN: 0-618-15955-X
Orville is a big, ugly dog. He's not a bad dog, he's a misunderstood dog.

Over the years, he's had bad experiences with the humans in his life who believe the proper place for a dog is at the end of a chain. His humans have never understood that Orville barks for very good reasons and behaves as he does with a plan in mind. Orville knows how to see into people's hearts and smell their dreams.

Orville, A Dog Story is a lovely tale for everyone. Haven Kimmel's story is gentle and kind without relying on sentimentality. Robert Andrew Parker's illustrations are lively and colorful.

Haven Kimmel was once accused of "loving animals more than God" in Sunday school. Orville, A Dog Story, is her first children's book. She's also the author of a memoir, A Girl Named Zippy, and two novels, The Solace of Leaving Early, and Something Rising (Light and Swift). She lives in Durham, North Carolina, with her family, a cat, a fish, and five dogs.

Robert Andrew Parker lives in West Cornwall, Connecticut. He's also the illustrator of many other books for children, including the 2003 Sibert Honor book Action Jackson and To Fly. Like Kimmel, he loves dogs.
Pam Kingsbury
Southern Scribe Reviews

2004, Southern Scribe Reviews, All Rights Reserved