Rummanah Aasi
  I never had a pet while growing up and I still don't have one.  I grew up in Chicago and the apartment building where I lived did not allow pets. Even when I moved to the suburbs, I didn't have any inkling to have a pet. It's not that I don't like animals, I do. In fact, I like playing around with my friend's pets and do understand the special connection pet owners have with their pets. Hachiko Waits by Leslea Newman is a sweet story that describes that special relationship between pets and their masters.

Description: Hachi, an Akita pup, is the devoted, brave, and very smart dog that belongs to Professor Eizaburo Ueno. Hachi loves nothing more than accompanying his master to his morning train and then meeting him in the afternoon after the Professor returns from work. One day the Professor does not return yet the faithful Hachi awaits his master's return day after day, month after month, and year after year until he is not able. Hachiko Waits is based on a true story.

Review: Hachiko Waits is a beautiful, bittersweet book that all animal lovers will love and enjoy. Hachi is the epitome of loyalty, bravery, hope, and intelligence. Without being instructed, he dutifully waits for his master regardless of how long it takes. Newman does a good job in not making the book overly sentimental or depressing. Although there is a sad ending, I felt that the book was overly inspiring and uplifting.
   The book takes place during the 1920s in Japan. Along with the story, there is a nice and simple introduction to the Japanese culture. The book is composed of ten short chapters and black and white illustrations that bring the story to life. A glossary of Japanese words as well as an author note about the real Hachi is included at the back of the book. A great choice for grades 3 to 5.

Rating: 4 stars

Words of Caution: None.

If you like this book try: Hachiko: The True Story of a Loyal Dog by Pamela Turner or watch Hachi the movie
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