Plenty of Big Titles are coming out right about now in the world of middle grade, the seventh book in the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series and Lemony’s Snicket’s “Who Could That Be At This Hour?” among them. But at KLN, we want to show a little special weekly love to a debut novelist. And this week, we’re featuring a story about two of my favorite things: outcasts and dogs.
Olivia has just about had it with the popular kids at school. She and her friends have done nothing to deserve humiliating pranks and mean name-calling, but that doesn’t stop queen bee Brynne from tormenting them. If only Olivia’s classmates were more like the dogs she helps her grandmother train—poorly behaved, but improvable.
Then Olivia hatches a brilliant plan: she and her friends will modify their tormentors’ behavior with the same kind of training that works on dogs. Using cues and responses, distractions and rewards, gets better results than anyone could have guessed. Soon, Olivia and her friends have replaced Brynne as alpha-dogs. But will popularity get Olivia what she really wants?
Kiera Stewart is a writer for teens and tweens. Her qualifications include never having gotten wisdom teeth. She’s been writing since she was five, but with titles such as “Mixed Feelings,” “Old Monster, the Bees, and Karen,” and the self-congratulatory, “The Amazing Story!” it’s no wonder FETCHING is her first published novel.
She’s currently at work on her second tween novel and lives in Arlington, Virginia, with her family and her dog, Casper, who, despite shots and proper training, tends to look slightly rabid in photos.
Tuesday, November 13th, 2012
Um, a book about underdogs, alpha dogs, and actual dogs? Yes please. The idea of a group of middle schoolers modifying the cool kids’ behavior Dog Whisperer style is flippin’ brilliant. (Plus, you know. I’m just a sucker for dogs.)