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I made the mistake of picking up a book with a dog on the cover. I almost stopped reading after the first chapter when the dog gets his by a car. As soon as Kat starts talking about how great her dog is on the first page, I thought, "Oh no, it's going to be one of those books." Thankfully, the dog doesn't immediately die or anything and the book isn't about Kat's grief over her dead dog. Hooray.
This turned out to actually be a pretty good book. I'll admit, it's a little more stretched out than I would have liked, but a lot happens. It isn't just about her dog getting hit by a car. It isn't just about dealing with the whole bike theft thing. It isn't just about tutoring the annoying girl in math or meeting the woman who accidentally hit her dog. It's a whole bunch of things rolled into one that helps Kat grow as a person and learn through experience.
A good book for young readers, because a lot happens in a relatively short amount of time and Kat has to deal with some important, complex issues (fights with friends, reputations, making new friends, and of course the whole dog thing). This is a good book for kids who like to read.
The dog doesn't die at the end.