by Guojing


In this heartwarming, wordless picture book that's perfect for dog lovers, a woman visits a park and discovers a pup hiding under a bench--scruffy, scared, and alone. With gentle coaxing, the woman tries to befriend the animal, but the dog is too scared to let her near. Day after day, the woman tries--and day after day, the dog runs away. With perseverance and patience--and help from an enticing tennis ball--a tentative friendship begins. But it's not until a raging storm forces the two together that a joyous and satisfying friendship takes hold. Guojing poignantly explores how trust doesn't always come easily, but how, over time, and with kindness and determination, forever love can grow.



“A touching tale about the strong emotional connection between dog and human.” —Kirkus Reviews, starred review 

“Guojing paces the story to rock emotionally between the dog’s lonely existence and the woman’s offer of love, building all the way to a joyful conclusion.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review

“ Adults should be prepared for some serious pet pleading after kids get a look at our scruffy hero and its happy ending.“—Bulletin, starred review

“Brimming with golden-hued love, this is a book that successfully appeals to our most basic human sentiment, perfect for anyone who appreciates Guojing’s accomplished visual style as well as dog lovers of all ages.” —Booklist, starred review

“This beautifully illustrated book will appeal to a wide range of ages, can spark conversations around houselessness and insecurity, or just be enjoyed as a tale of a dog finding a “­forever home.” —School Library Journal

“Guojing amplifies the suspense and sentiment of her story with the skill — and mercilessness — of a great Disney or Pixar director…. Masterful.“ —New York Times Book Review

Gr 1-4–Guojing’s wordless picture book follow-up to The Only Child is a story of patience and building trust in new relationships. A small, stray dog lives under a park bench and is visited by a young woman who repeatedly tries to connect with the pup, eventually using the element of play and the lure of playing ball. After one day of ball, without the woman knowing, the dog follows her home and that night a storm eventually brings the two permanently together. On the surface this is a simple story, but Guojing’s artistic techniques draw readers in to each quiet, tender, fearful moment and allows them to understand the trauma that comes from living in insecurity. Using pencil and watercolor, her emotive use of light shows the sense of loneliness and isolation that happens in the shadows. Pages move from panels to full spreads that offer pacing and pauses to match the ebbs and flows of the building relationship. Just like the young woman gives the dog the space it needs, Guojing gives readers moments to stop and feel the emotion. VERDICT This beautifully illustrated book will appeal to a wide range of ages, can spark conversations around houselessness and insecurity, or just be enjoyed as a tale of a dog finding a “­forever home.”–Danielle Jones, Multnomah County Library” —School Library Journal’s September 2019 issue

Book Details

  • Age Range: 3 - 7 years

  • Grade Level: Preschool - 2

  • Library Binding: 40 pages

  • Publisher: Schwartz & Wade (September 17, 2019)

  • Language: English

  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 11 inche