Book Review: Kibble Talk by Cynthia Port

Kibble Talk by Cynthia Port is a children's chapter book about nine-year-old Tawny who just cannot turn down a dare or crazy plan. Because of this weakness she gags down a piece of dog kibble. afterwards she can hear and talk to dogs. This includes her enormous Great Dane named Dinky, who fondest wish is to be a tiny lap dog. Tawny promises to help him become one. Tawny soon finds out what it means to make, and keep, a promise to a friend. while she does her best to help Dinky, her parents begin to question her sanity and her best friend Jenny becomes her worst enemy. Can Tawny keep her own thoughts straight and still manage make things right in her family, get her best friend back, and figure out how to handle such a special gift.

Kibble Talk is the first book in the Kibble Talk series. It is funny, sweet, and fast moving. I loved the character of Tawny, who is adventurous and willing to try anything once. She is also willing to put her own friendships and social standing on the line to keep a promise and her ability a secret. I really liked that while tawny was not a perfect kid, and had all the fears of looking foolish that are pretty much universal, she still stood out as a smart and unique character. I also loved the concept of the book, and its execution. talking to animals is not a new idea, but the way it was done here and the humor involved just made the story great fun to read. I love forward to seeing what kind of trouble Tawny and Dinky find themselves in as the series continues.

I would recommend Kibble Talk to readers around 7 to 12 years old. I think it is also well suited for reading aloud in a classroom or as a family. Animal lovers, readers that enjoy a good laugh, and those just getting into reading for fun will all enjoy the story. just keep an eye on any pet food in the house, because I can imagine that some enthusiastic readers might be tempted to give it a try in hopes of being able to hear your animals like Tawny. Kibble Talk: Dog Gone Dinky, book 2 in the series, should be available by the end of February, 2014.

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