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My Old Pal, Oscar

Amy Hest, Amy June Bates (Illustrator)


List Price: 16.95*
* Individual store prices may vary.


After a young boy’s beloved pet passes away, he encounters an adorable stray dog on the beach. The boy tries to walk away and ignore the cuddly creature, but the puppy continues to follow him, undeterred. Though the boy is still dealing with the pain of his loss and feels afraid to care about a new pet again, as the two walk the sand together, the boy slowly opens himself up to the joy of having a new dog in his life and making peace with the past. New York Times bestselling Amy Hest and Amy Bates, the beloved team who created The Dog Who Belonged to No One, have created a touching story about new beginnings and how friendship and love have the power to heal.

Praise For My Old Pal, Oscar

"It’s hard to resist a classic puppy-finds-home story, and this one gains extra poignancy and dimension from addressing the aftermath of loss. The first-person narration is essentially one-sided dialogue rather than a formal narrative, giving immediacy to the proceedings. Pencil and watercolor art balances the adorableness of the small, fluffy, button-nosed dog with the gloomy leaden skies; skilled compositions shift from puppy-level to kid level, from vignettes to double-page spreads, and cleverly use the geometry of the empty pier and its support posts. Kids who’ve lost pets will especially appreciate the message of missing your old pet while welcoming the new, and dog lovers will heave a sigh of relief at the pup’s happy ending."

“Bates employs watercolors irresistibly to capture both rainy beach and captivating puppy. Hest’s pacing reflects the growing friendship. The creative pair behind The Dog Who Belonged to No One now share a welcome twist on bibliotherapy following the death of a beloved pet.”
— School Library Journal

"The spray of the waves, the far-off cries of the gulls, and the salted breeze of the sea are expertly evoked in these frames." 
— Kirkus

Abrams Books for Young Readers, 9781419719011, 32pp.

Publication Date: May 3, 2016

About the Author

Amy Hest is the author of When Jessie Came Across the Sea, which won the Christopher Award, as well as several New York Times bestselling picture books. She lives in New York City.

Amy Bates is the illustrator of Bear in the Air, Minette’s Feast, and The Dog Who Belonged to No One. She lives in Carlisle, Pennsylvania.