4 out of 4 stars
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Chelsea's New Beginning by Daniel Keith Austin is an endearing children's book about a little puppy that finds a new home after a previous owner rejects her. The young Golden Retriever feels confused and sad when she ends up in an animal shelter until she meets a kind friend named Nathan. She longs for a caring home and someone to love her. Will she find happiness?
The 38-page picture book is exceptionally edited and features charming illustrations of the sweet puppy. The children's story addresses such themes as responsibility, acceptance, rejection, confusion, self-doubt, empathy, love, and friendship. Young readers are introduced to the puppy's new friends, including Brizo, Ophelia, George, Lily, Rocky, and Sassy, as they learn the names of various breeds of dogs and cats. They will also discover how the Golden Retriever receives her new name, Chelsea.
Without revealing spoilers, I will say that I especially like how the story ends. I also appreciate the opportunity it provides to teach children about the responsibility involved in caring for pets. For instance, the book illustrated that the boy who first owned Chelsea was not ready to care for a pet. Even young readers can empathize with the little puppy's feelings and self-doubts when she wonders if she did something wrong, causing her to end up in the shelter.
Additionally, the book includes beautiful illustrations featuring a soothing color palette by Melissa Nettleship. The scenes portray Chelsea in her first home, the animal shelter, and her new home, complementing the accompanying text perfectly.
It is my pleasure to rate Chelsea's New Beginning 4 out of 4 stars. It conveys an age-appropriate message about kindness to animals. I am unable to name anything I dislike or suggest any improvements to this lovely children's book. The story will appeal to children through the age of 8, parents, teachers, and grandparents.
Chelsea's New Beginning
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