Way Home

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by Libby Hathorn, illustrations by Gregory Rogers. (This book is out of print as of 1/98 but you can request that the Amazon.com bookstore locate a copy for you.) Picture Book. Grades 2+.
This review by Carol Otis Hurst first appeared in Teaching K-8 Magazine April 1995.
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Review

There's a wonderful picture book by Libby Hathorn with illustrations by Gregory Rogers: Way Home. Visually it is rich and powerful though the main character may not appear to be so, at least at first. The cover may remind you of the one on Lois Lowry's The Giver with that torn-away look. The content, however, is very different.

It's night in the city and a boy, Shane, finds a cat, angry and frightened. Placing the cat in his jacket, Shane sets out for home. On the way, he talks to the cat, trying out different names starting with Scaredy Cat and ending with Mycat. The way home isn't easy; there are very real dangers everywhere for the cat and for Shane, but the boy is well acquainted with the night and the city and runs from some dangers and faces others all the time reassuring the cat that they are going home. You'll love Shane as the cat must by the time they get there. The shock is on the last page when they crawl through a chain link fence into "home", a tiny shack, a cubby hole, really, where the boy has obviously lived alone for some time. At least now he's got Mycat.

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Related Books

Homelessness:

Fiction:

cover art
  • Eve Bunting's Fly Away Home (Houghton, 1993 ISBN 0 395 66415 2)

  • Eve Bunting's novel If I Asked You, Would You Stay? (HarperCollins, 1984 ISBN 0 397 32066 3)

  • Lois Lowry's Taking Care of Terrific (Dell, 1984 ISBN 0 395 34070 5)

  • Theresa Nelson's The Beggars' Ride (Orchard, 1992 ISBN 0 531 05896 4)

  • Paula Fox's Monkey Island (Dell, 1993 ISBN 0 440 40770 2)

Nonfiction:

  • Ellen Switzer's Anyplace but Here: Young, Alone and Homeless (Macmillan, 1992 ISBN 0 689 31694 1)

  • Home: A Collaboration of Thirty Authors and Illustrators of Children's Books to Aid the Homeless (HarperCollins, 1992 ISBN 0 06 021788 X)

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