A Place to Call Home is the heartwarming and inspiring story of an abandoned white German shepherd puppy named Toby and his cross-country search for a forever home. Narrated in part by the animal characters in the book, the reader experiences Toby’s world through his eyes and those of the animals he meets on his journey.
Toby’s life begins on a farm where the carefree, happy days he has known come to an abrupt end when his breeder decides to “dispose” of him and his sister Tara because of the color of their fur. With the help of a kind farmhand, the two puppies escape unharmed.
After a tumultuous time during which Toby is shuffled from place to place, he is finally adopted, but he quickly realizes his new family has deep-seated issues that put him in danger, and what seemed like an ideal home, turns into another place he must escape from.
As Toby struggles to find a forever home where he can feel safe and secure, he experiences some painful losses, but he also makes new friends–friends who will help him to trust humans again and teach him the power of love.
Inspired by a true story, this middle grade/young adult novel can be enjoyed by dog lovers of all ages.
First lines: Toby huddled beneath the small table in the corner of the room. His eyes darted back and forth in fear. The corner – at one time a place of refuge, a place to escape from a man and his wrath – had now become a trap.
Whitmore has written one of my favorite kinds of narratives with “A Place To Call Home”. Reading from the perspective of an animal (especially mixed with human narratives) has always been something that fascinates me.
I think part of what makes this book so great is that Whitmore pours her love of animals into every page. I think these are some of the most developed animal characters I’ve met that weren’t in a fantasy novel.
Toby’s tale is a tough one to follow but very realistic. Humanity, for the most part, looks at animals as stupid. Which really is a shame since there is scientific evidence to prove their intelligence. For people who deeply love their animal companions, the idea of them being intelligent has always been a no brainer.
Toby’s tale is an emotional and thought provoking journey to find a forever home. However, it is so much more than just a story. It bring to light various issues that dogs face at the hands of human beings. This story spotlights the trials that humanity puts on anything or anyone that is deemed inferior.
As a dog mom, there was a lot of things that happened in this book that made me angry. I hope that this story elicits a similar response in society. Angry people make changes. Dogs and other animals have very positive effects on human lives. I hope that in the future humanity has more of a positive effect on them than we have had in the past.
The Technical Data:
Title: A Place To Call Home | Series: N/A | Author(s): G. A. Whitmore |Publisher: Outskirts Press / Publication Date: 2-19-2014 |Pages: 302 (Print) | ISBN: 978-1478700739 | Genre(s): All Ages / Contemporary |Language: English |Rating: 5 out of 5 | Date Read: 9-8-2016 |Source: Copy from Author