Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Protecting Marie by Kevin Henkes - Review

Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Release Date: October 2, 2007
Source: Store
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Fanny is a 12 year old girl in Madison, Wisconsin. She had always dreamed of having a dog, and pleaded with her dad for a very long time to get her one. Finally, one day, her father shows up with a small puppy named Nellie, and Fanny instantly becomes attached to her. But Nellie kept ruining the furniture, the carpet, and Henry's (her dad's) art studio. On his last nerve, Henry decides to give Nellie away and Fanny is heartbroken for a very long time.

A few years later, with Fanny still touchy about the subject of dogs, Henry disappears for a day and comes back with a big old dog named Dinner. Fanny is cautious with getting to know Dinner, knowing that she is probably just setting herself up for disappointment in her father again. Henry promises not to give her away ever.

The title of this book, Protecting Marie, refers to a paper doll that Fanny had created when she was little, Queen Marie. Every week her father would have a "Stupid Hunt" with her to clean up her room and throw away things that were "Stupid". Fanny was terrified that Henry would find Marie and throw her away, so she had to find a new place to hide her for every Stupid Hunt. This at first confused me, because I thought that the dog should have been named Marie, but it was just a paper doll. I'm about 99.9% sure that this title is an analogy to an important concept in the book, but it's been a while since I read it, so I can't remember anything relating to the title.

I felt that I could really relate to this book in sooo many ways. Fanny's undying love for Dinner is truly remarkable. The ending is also a happy one, and it leaves the reader with a warm, fuzzy feeling. Dogs are always so loyal. ;)

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