Book Review: Valentino Finds a Home by Andy Whiteside

Valentino Finds a Home, written by by Andy Whiteside and illustrated by Catherine Hnatov, is a picturebvook scheduled for release on April 15 2012. Valentino is a guinea pig looking for a home. Born in Bolivia, where he could be considered lunch, Valentino gets himself in shape and stows away in a suitcase to flay to a new home. The suitcase's owner was far from thrilled to see him, and he is brought to a pet store, and soon finds himself as a birthday present for Maddie. Finally Valentino is recognized for what he is, a guinea pig and a wonderful pet.

Valentino Finds a Home
would be a great choice for a family with a guinea pig, or as part of a surprise that includes one. The mention of guinea pigs being eaten in Bolivia might upset some children, if they pay enough attention to note that their favorite pet might be someone's favorite midnight snack. However, the fun illustrations of Valentino at the gym and swimming to prepare for his escape will quickly lighten the mood. The rhyming phrases sometimes fall flat, or feel forced, but the story as a whole works. The images are cute, and compliment the story nicely.
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