Michael was four when his relentless campaign for a dog began. At seven, he made a PowerPoint presentation, "My Dog," with headings like "A Childhood Without a Dog Is a Sad Thing." His parents, Janet and Rich, were steadfast; bringing a dog into their fast-paced New York City lives was utterly impractical. However, on a trip to Italy, a chance happening leads Janet to reconsider, a decision then hastened by a diagnosis of breast cancer. Janet decides the excitement of a new puppy would be the perfect antidote to the strain on the family of months of arduous treatments for her illness. The prospect of a new puppy would be an affirmation of life, a powerful talisman for them all. On Thanksgiving weekend, soon after the grueling months of treatments are over, Huck, a sweet, mischievous, red-haired toy poodle, joins the family and wins everyone's hearts. A few months later, the family ventures to baseball's spring training, leaving Huck with Janet's sister in Ramsey, New Jersey. Barely twenty-four hours into the trip, Janet receives the dreaded phone call: Huck has slipped through the backyard fence and run away. Broken-hearted and frantic, the family catches the first plane to New Jersey to begin a search for their lost puppy. It is a race against time, for little Huck is now lost in an area entirely unfamiliar to him, facing the threat of bears and coyotes, swamps and freezing temperatures, rain and fast cars. Moved by the family's plight, strangers-from schoolchildren to townspeople to the police lieutenant-join the search, one that proves to be an unyielding test of determination and faith. Touching and warm-hearted, Huck is a spirit-lifting story about resilience, the generosity of strangers, and hope.
About the Author
JANET ELDER was graduated summa cum laude from the University of Texas in Austin with a B.A. in English and Latin. She is a member of Phi Beta Kappa. She was the recipient of a government fellowship for Southern Methodist University's Reading Research Program, which resulted in a master's degree. Her Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction in reading is from Texas Woman's University where the College of Education presented her the Outstanding Dissertation Award. She established the first comprehensive secondary reading program in the Dallas Independent School District, and has conducted extensive staff development training for Dallas area teachers. After teaching reading and study skills courses at Richland for several years, she was asked to develop and implement an honors program for the college. After coordinating the honors program during its first six years, she resumed teaching full time. In addition to teaching reading courses, Dr. Elder periodically serves on interdisciplanary teaching teams for honors English and humanities courses. She has served on a task force that re-evaluated Richland's writing-across-the-curriculum program. She has twice received the Extra Mile Award from special services (disabilities) students, has twice been her division's Piper Award nominee for excellence in teaching, and in 1993 received an Excellence Award from the National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development. In 1999 she was one of three nominees for Richland's Excellence in Teaching Award. A frequent presenter at professional conferences and inservice workshops, she has a deep interest and expertise in brain friendly instruction.
Karen White is a classically trained actress who has been recording audiobooks since 1999. An Audie Award finalist, she has earned numerous AudioFile Earphones Awards, including for Everything That Rises Must Converge by Flannery O'Connor and No Passengers beyond This Point by Gennifer Choldenko. Her reading of The Hemingses of Monticello by Annette Gordon-Reed was named one of AudioFile's Best Audiobooks of 2009.
"It's a modern-day myth that happened to be true. It's a story in which wonderful things occurred because people believed in themselves and in each other. It's a story about the power of love to change our world." ---Caroline Kennedy