Monday, January 12, 2015

Book Review: Sally Goes to the Mountains (dog, children's book)

Sally Goes to the Mountains, by Stephen Huneck (Abrams, 2001, 38 pages, $18.95, ages 4-8)

Sally Goes to the Mountains is entrancing and educational – for children and for their parents.

Sally, America’s favorite black lab, (probably) lives on Dog Mountain in Vermont with author, woodcarver and illustrator Stephen Huneck but she is very excited about going on vacation to the mountains, nonetheless.

A Dog Book for Kids (and Adults), Starring – A Dog!

No humans appear in this book series, not even children – only parts of humans, like hands for petting dogs and arms for driving them around. Because, after all, these are dog books (for all children who understand dogs). The Sally books are intensely dog-centric, child-centric and personal, told from a dog’s point of view so children naturally understand and adults have to try harder.


Huneck first drew the illustrations in crayon; then, for each color, he carved a different block of wood. After each block was inked with its one color, the blocks were stamped onto paper and allowed to dry. Painstakingly finished and filled with love, these illustrations are a national treasure.

At the Mountains

Who does Sally meet and what new things does she experience? Each Sally book is an adventure with Sally teaching her young readers how much fun it is to meet new friends and try new things in new places like at the mountains. Confidence will build in your child.

Sally falls asleep in the car on the way to the mountains. The next thing you know, she is meeting all the animals she read about to get ready for her trip to the mountains. . . . . Sally meets an owl and introduces herself. “Hi! My name is Sally.” “Who?” “Sally.” “Who?”. . . .

The mountains are beautiful and hopping with life (bunnies, that is) and a family of skunks is very nice, except for one little stinker. (This is sure to become a family joke.)

Finally, Sally spies a bush full of cans of dog food but nobody is around to open the cans. “Sally, wake up. We’re. . . .“ here.

The Sally Books, Truly a National Treasure

Charming and whimsical with a twist or two to keep the giggles coming, even from the adults, the Sally books are books to keep.

Each book is simply too charming. Each situation is simply priceless. I wish I would’ve thought of even one of them!

For Adults?

Don’t tell anyone but I think The Sally Books were also written with adults in mind. We can always say we bought them for the wood-cut illustrations!

Next: Sally Goes to the Farm

The Sally Books:
Sally Goes to the Beach, Sally Goes to the Mountains, Sally Goes to the Farm, Sally Goes to the Vet , Sally’s Snow Adventure, Sally Gets a Job and Sally Goes to Heaven
Sally’s Great Balloon Adventure
Sally at the Farm, Sally in the Sand

My Dog’s Brain, The Dog Chapel, and Even Bad Dogs Go to Heaven

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