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Strider has a new habit. Whenever we stop, he places his paw on my foot. It isn't an accident because he always does it. I like to think he doesn't want to leave me.Can a stray dog change the life of a teenage boy? It looks as if Strider can. He's a dog that loves to run; because of Strider, Leigh Botts finds himself running — well enough to join the school track team. Str Strider has a new habit. Whenever we stop, he places his paw on my foot. It isn't an accident because he always does it. I like to think he doesn't want to leave me.Can a stray dog change the life of a teenage boy? It looks as if Strider can. He's a dog that loves to run; because of Strider, Leigh Botts finds himself running — well enough to join the school track team. Strider changes Leigh on the inside, too, as he finally begins to accept his parents' divorce and gets to know a redheaded girl he's been admiring. With Strider's help, Leigh finds that the future he once hated to be asked about now holds something he never expected: hope.


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Strider has a new habit. Whenever we stop, he places his paw on my foot. It isn't an accident because he always does it. I like to think he doesn't want to leave me.Can a stray dog change the life of a teenage boy? It looks as if Strider can. He's a dog that loves to run; because of Strider, Leigh Botts finds himself running — well enough to join the school track team. Str Strider has a new habit. Whenever we stop, he places his paw on my foot. It isn't an accident because he always does it. I like to think he doesn't want to leave me.Can a stray dog change the life of a teenage boy? It looks as if Strider can. He's a dog that loves to run; because of Strider, Leigh Botts finds himself running — well enough to join the school track team. Strider changes Leigh on the inside, too, as he finally begins to accept his parents' divorce and gets to know a redheaded girl he's been admiring. With Strider's help, Leigh finds that the future he once hated to be asked about now holds something he never expected: hope.

30 review for Strider

  1. 4 out of 5

    Brina

    During a few year stretch of my adolescence, there was a time when I kept a lot of penpals. Before the internet and email’s arrival with the touch of a button, I loved the thrill of seeing mail addressed to me from all parts of the globe. I had penpals from as far as Australia and as close as Michigan, and each piece of mail was no less thrilling than the last. It is little wonder that one of my favorite books during that time was Dear Mr Henshaw by Beverly Cleary. I read it so many times that I During a few year stretch of my adolescence, there was a time when I kept a lot of penpals. Before the internet and email’s arrival with the touch of a button, I loved the thrill of seeing mail addressed to me from all parts of the globe. I had penpals from as far as Australia and as close as Michigan, and each piece of mail was no less thrilling than the last. It is little wonder that one of my favorite books during that time was Dear Mr Henshaw by Beverly Cleary. I read it so many times that I knew the key points in the plot by heart. I did not know that the estimable Cleary had written a sequel after I had advanced to the teen and adult sections of my library. To my thrill, I found Strider on my parents’ bookshelf a few years ago yet never got around to reading it. Needing either an author or character whose name starts with the letter B for a scrabble challenge, I thought this was as good a time as any to read one of my childhood favorite authors. Three years have elapsed since Leigh Botts and his mother moved to their cottage by the beach in Pacific Grove, California. No longer the new kid, Leigh is about to enter high school and hopes to make a good impression on the rest of the school. His father still drives a long distance truck and calls from time to time, and his mother still works the afternoon shift at the local hospital while studying to be a registered nurse. Told by his mother to clean out his room one summer morning, Leigh unearths the diary he kept during sixth grade and decides to write in it again. During the eighties and nineties when gender roles in society were much more defined than they are now, in hindsight I see how cutting edge Cleary was in having a male teenaged protagonist keep a diary, a hobby usually associated with girls. Leigh needed an outlet because he still only had one friend Barry and he spent long hours alone in his cottage. Writing would keep him from loitering on the beach and watching too much television, keeping him in his mother’s good graces. Leigh’s loneliness takes a turn for the better when he and Barry discover an abandoned dog on the beach one day. Leigh still misses his dog Bandit that his dad took with him when his parents got divorced three years earlier. Leigh and Barry, whose parents are also divorced, make a lighthearted jab at divorce as they agree to joint custody of this dog who they name Strider. Surprisingly, Leigh’s mother agrees to this arrangement because she knows that he could use a companion on his long nights alone in the cottage. He has always been a good kid- mopping floors, doing his share of the laundry on their trips to the laundromat, and maintaining good grades in school. An Australian shepherd dog, Strider ended up being a blessing for Leigh who no longer had to spend all of his time on his own. Even though he is growing into a young man at age fourteen, Leigh is still in need of his parents, neither of whom is around that much. A dog and writing his thoughts down in a diary would have to suffice. Strider ends up being the loyalest of dogs and a blessing in Leigh’s life, and, important to this animal lover, nothing happens to him other than being loved by Leigh, Barry, and their families. Strider picked two quality families to be adopted by indeed. Beverly Cleary made a career writing about kids with real issues without going over the top, just writing about the everyday occurrences in their lives. Fans had been clamoring for a sequel to Dear Mr Henshaw so she obliged, yet, in high school, Leigh is a little older than her averaged age protagonist. Here, she helps children of divorce navigate through difficult times by writing of how Leigh, Barry, and their new friend Kevin cope with their parents’ splitting in unique ways. At fourteen, Leigh is just beginning to experience teenaged angst and conflict, chuckling about his English teacher behind her back, dealing with a brief falling out with Barry, and falling for Geneva Weston, a girl with monarch butterfly hair. They join the track team and integrate into their high school community, all the while Leigh maintaining the qualities that have adults saying he is a good kid. Now having a dog, Leigh’s life appears stable and “normal” as he begins the path through his teenaged years toward adulthood. He is the type of young man that his parents do not have to worry about and is the protagonist of a story that parents feel comfortable having their kids read, hopefully influencing them for the better. In this era where most young adult books involve teen romance or supernatural elements, I find it difficult to choose quality books for my advanced reading fourth grade daughter. Although below her current reading level, Strider is the type of book I read at her age that I keep looking for in current library stacks, a book about an everyday kid whose issues are not dramatized. Leigh Botts is the type of wholesome character that authors today should focus on rather than making every teenaged friendship into romance and divorce into the end of the world. Rather than sinking into depression, Leigh keeps a diary and becomes a friend to a loyal dog. The world needs more authors like Beverly Cleary, who help kids navigate through real world issues by minimizing conflict. I am glad that is discovered this gem of hers on my bookshelf. 4.5 stars 📔 🐕 🐾 🏃

  2. 5 out of 5

    Stephen Gallup

    The other day my 8-year-old surprised me by liking a passage in one of her books enough to read it to me with great expression while I was driving the car: “The old man said to the stranger, ‘I gotcha cornered, and I’m gonna tell ya about my dog. Ya gotta listen even if ya don’t wanna. My dog’s coat is sorta rough, but his ears are kinda soft. He knows howta heel. His eyes say, Gimme your attention, gimme your love, gimme a bone. Whatcha think of that? When I walk him, he always hasta lift his le The other day my 8-year-old surprised me by liking a passage in one of her books enough to read it to me with great expression while I was driving the car: “The old man said to the stranger, ‘I gotcha cornered, and I’m gonna tell ya about my dog. Ya gotta listen even if ya don’t wanna. My dog’s coat is sorta rough, but his ears are kinda soft. He knows howta heel. His eyes say, Gimme your attention, gimme your love, gimme a bone. Whatcha think of that? When I walk him, he always hasta lift his leg. Ya oughta see my dog.’ The stranger said, ‘Lemme go. I don’t care aboucher dog.’” My curiosity piqued, I read more and found that the above excerpt was a writing assignment the protagonist had prepared for his English class, inspired by The Rime of the Ancient Mariner – and that his teacher gave him trouble about the informal spellings. I told my daughter the teacher was out of line and said I want to hear about it when she runs into problems like that with her teachers. As the kid in the book says, his teacher would have given Coleridge a bad grade for misspelling Rhyme. This is the first time I’ve attempted to review a children’s book, but having now read the whole thing I think Strider is great stuff. I already knew the author’s Ramona books, not to mention many others that the daughter leaves around the house, and they aren’t bad. But this one, written in diary style about a boy with ambivalent feelings toward his parents and his place in the world, should be a classic. Every bit of it ties together, and it’s just as touching as it can be. (Am I unusual in responding to it that way? Cannot believe the reviewer who claims to have "dumpstered" it.)

  3. 4 out of 5

    Tatevik

    In the introduction of Henry Huggins Beverly Cleary wrote that she wanted to write a book for school boys about boys, books about kids who are bored and try to find something to do. She underestimated her prose. I am not a boy, turning 30 soon, and her books make me so happy. I envy these boys who would go to library and find Cleary as their librarian. I just want to find her, give a big hug, look into her eyes and try to find Ramona trapped in the body of this dearest old lady.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Nathan

    A welcome return to the life of Leigh Botts. Beverly Cleary once again uses tone with faultless control: Leigh has grown up, naturally and believably. The fledgling maturity of his character in coming to grips with his parent's divorce, his nascent attraction to a girl, his self-assuredness; all of it rings true, with the slightest tinge of sadness. There is a bittersweet undertone here not found in "Dear Mr Henshaw", a bit of saying goodbye to the younger way of living life, and for us, leaving A welcome return to the life of Leigh Botts. Beverly Cleary once again uses tone with faultless control: Leigh has grown up, naturally and believably. The fledgling maturity of his character in coming to grips with his parent's divorce, his nascent attraction to a girl, his self-assuredness; all of it rings true, with the slightest tinge of sadness. There is a bittersweet undertone here not found in "Dear Mr Henshaw", a bit of saying goodbye to the younger way of living life, and for us, leaving Leigh behind. I wish the end had been more satisfying. With a character as well-developed as Leigh, more closure was needed to put him to rest. Still, this book, like its prequel, is a prime example of realistic characterization, artistic character development and subtle emotion. If you liked "Dear Mr. Henshaw", consider this nonnegotiable reading.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Ahmad Sharabiani

    Strider (Leigh Botts #2), Beverly Cleary

  6. 4 out of 5

    Jill Reeder

    I home-school my kids and we like to listen to books on cd in the car. (we have a 45 minute drive to just about anywhere we go) We recently listened to Dear Mr. Henshaw on cd. I thought I had read it growing up, but the story was not familiar to me. I really enjoyed listening to it and so did my kids. I was thrilled to hear that there was a sequel. I was even more thrilled to learn that our small local library had it on cd as well. My husband doesn't care to read, but has been recently laid off. I home-school my kids and we like to listen to books on cd in the car. (we have a 45 minute drive to just about anywhere we go) We recently listened to Dear Mr. Henshaw on cd. I thought I had read it growing up, but the story was not familiar to me. I really enjoyed listening to it and so did my kids. I was thrilled to hear that there was a sequel. I was even more thrilled to learn that our small local library had it on cd as well. My husband doesn't care to read, but has been recently laid off. I got the book on cd and wasn't sure when we would listen to it. My husband said to go ahead and put it in the car cd player. He enjoyed it just as much as I did. Now he wants to get more books on cd to listen to in the car. We especially loved the voice of the narrator (?)- George Guidall. He was very pleasant to listen to and made the characters come to life. I really like the style of the book, in diary form. The characters have fun distinctive personalities. It's a book that children and adults can relate to and enjoy.

  7. 4 out of 5

    SheAintGotNoShoes

    Wonderful book ! I was a huge Beverly Cleary fan 45 years ago when I was a kid and read all her books, Carolyn Haywood and Frances Lattimore before her, and Judy Bloom afterwards. I decided to revisit a great deal of books that I loved between 1966-1980 and started by taking out an armful of Judy Blume and Beverly Cleary books, this being one of them. I was disappointed to see when I looked for the copyright date it was 1991, so clearly not one I read as a kid, as I was 30 in 1991, but it was defi Wonderful book ! I was a huge Beverly Cleary fan 45 years ago when I was a kid and read all her books, Carolyn Haywood and Frances Lattimore before her, and Judy Bloom afterwards. I decided to revisit a great deal of books that I loved between 1966-1980 and started by taking out an armful of Judy Blume and Beverly Cleary books, this being one of them. I was disappointed to see when I looked for the copyright date it was 1991, so clearly not one I read as a kid, as I was 30 in 1991, but it was definitely worth reading and I am glad I've decided to go back in time for a bit to enjoy for a second time things that gave me pleasure all those decades ago now when I was a new reader.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Rena Sherwood

    Although this is a sequel, you do not have to read the first book in order to understand what's going on here. I'm 45 -- not exactly Cleary's target audience. However, I found this clever and cute story absorbing. The diary thing has been done to death, though. I wish this book had been published at the time of my parents' divorce. Although this is a sequel, you do not have to read the first book in order to understand what's going on here. I'm 45 -- not exactly Cleary's target audience. However, I found this clever and cute story absorbing. The diary thing has been done to death, though. I wish this book had been published at the time of my parents' divorce.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Angela Joyce

    How did I not know until yesterday that the book I grew up loving with all my heart, "Dear Mr. Henshaw", had a sequel-- and such a worthy one at that? How did I not know until yesterday that the book I grew up loving with all my heart, "Dear Mr. Henshaw", had a sequel-- and such a worthy one at that?

  10. 5 out of 5

    Phil

    My YA book club keeps picking books that lead off a series, which I feel compelled to investigate, if not read, but in this case I was glad I did. Cleary is not a writer for adults, but I cannot think of many adults who were not at some point a 14-year old, and there's a melancholy and a quietness to the beauty of her work. Admittedly, I cared more about the dog than the 14-year-old Leigh, but it was a fine novel - I wish I had first read it when I was 25 years younger! My YA book club keeps picking books that lead off a series, which I feel compelled to investigate, if not read, but in this case I was glad I did. Cleary is not a writer for adults, but I cannot think of many adults who were not at some point a 14-year old, and there's a melancholy and a quietness to the beauty of her work. Admittedly, I cared more about the dog than the 14-year-old Leigh, but it was a fine novel - I wish I had first read it when I was 25 years younger!

  11. 4 out of 5

    Carrie

    This was a nice gem, recently found out that there was a sequel to Dear Mr. Henshaw and this does a nice job tying up Leigh Botts teenage life. This book is told in diary form and an abandoned dog, who Leigh names Strider, has a starring role. Both myself and my 10 year old enjoyed this book, GOOD READ!

  12. 5 out of 5

    Farah

    * antennae-waving cockroaches * “Mom, I have a sore throat and I think I have a temperature.” Mom laid her hand on my forehead and said, “Everybody has a temperature. You have a fever.” * For some reason I thought of Barry’s grandmother’s beautiful needle-art knitting with soft, colorful yarns. Without thinking, I said,“Your hair would look nice knit into a sweater.” * “There is too much fat in the prose written in this class. Too many adjectives and adverbs. Your compositions are to be written usi * antennae-waving cockroaches * “Mom, I have a sore throat and I think I have a temperature.” Mom laid her hand on my forehead and said, “Everybody has a temperature. You have a fever.” * For some reason I thought of Barry’s grandmother’s beautiful needle-art knitting with soft, colorful yarns. Without thinking, I said,“Your hair would look nice knit into a sweater.” * “There is too much fat in the prose written in this class. Too many adjectives and adverbs. Your compositions are to be written using only nouns and verbs.” * “Funny, your sudden interest in weeds.” I knew she was teasing. I teased her back. “Yeah, this uncontrollable urge comes over me. Maybe it’s seismic vibrations or the position of the moon but I can’t help myself. HAHAHAHAHAH XDDD oh about Salinas, it was John Steinbeck got the idea for his story from fields like that, dear Leigh :)))

  13. 4 out of 5

    Jill

    I liked this story better than its prequel, probably because of the dog. :-) Leigh Botts is a well-drawn fourteen-year-old boy with flaws and strengths that ring true. I don't think I've yet read an unlikable book by Beverly Cleary. :-) I liked this story better than its prequel, probably because of the dog. :-) Leigh Botts is a well-drawn fourteen-year-old boy with flaws and strengths that ring true. I don't think I've yet read an unlikable book by Beverly Cleary. :-)

  14. 4 out of 5

    Liz

    Beverly Cleary is one of my favorite children's authors. I hadn't realized before that this book is a sequel to Dear Mr. Henshaw, which I loved. It was great to see some of the loose threads in Leigh's life come together as he navigates 9th grade. Beverly Cleary is one of my favorite children's authors. I hadn't realized before that this book is a sequel to Dear Mr. Henshaw, which I loved. It was great to see some of the loose threads in Leigh's life come together as he navigates 9th grade.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Michelle

    One of Beverly Cleary's more serious stories about growing up, friendship, dealing with divorce, and the love of a good dog. One of Beverly Cleary's more serious stories about growing up, friendship, dealing with divorce, and the love of a good dog.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Marylynn Leith

    Born Beverly Atlee Bunn on April 12, 1916, in McMinnville, Oregon, Beverly Cleary is one of America's most beloved children's book authors. She is the creative talent behind such classic works as Henry Higgins, Ramona the Pest and The Mouse and the Motorcycle.Strider is a very interesting book. In short it is about this boy that finds a stray dog and he and his friend take care of it. In the meantime he finds a girl that he likes and he joins the cross country team. This book can get very emotio Born Beverly Atlee Bunn on April 12, 1916, in McMinnville, Oregon, Beverly Cleary is one of America's most beloved children's book authors. She is the creative talent behind such classic works as Henry Higgins, Ramona the Pest and The Mouse and the Motorcycle.Strider is a very interesting book. In short it is about this boy that finds a stray dog and he and his friend take care of it. In the meantime he finds a girl that he likes and he joins the cross country team. This book can get very emotional because it talks about his parents divorce. And certain things like love. One of my favorite things in the book is how Strider the dog kind of sets the boy free and lets him experience life. The author of this book beverly cleary is a very inspirational leader. One of her most famous quotes is, “Children should learn that reading is pleasure, not just something that teachers make you do in school.” That makes so much sense to everyone involved. This is the first time I’ve attempted to review a children’s book, but having now read the whole thing I think Strider is great stuff. This is a great book for all ages. A quote from a fellow reader of this book states “I'm 45 -- not exactly Cleary's target audience. However, I found this clever and cute story absorbing.-Rena Sherwood”. This means that this book appeals to all types of people, male, female, short, tall, skinny, fat, old, young. This is just a great book in general. Definitely an 8.58/10. I wish the end had been more satisfying. With a character as well-developed as Leigh, more closure was needed to put him to rest. Still, this book, like its prequel, is a prime example of realistic characterization, artistic character development and subtle emotion. If you liked "Dear Mr. Henshaw", consider this nonnegotiable reading.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Carson Greer

    Strider is a very interesting book. In short it is about this boy that finds a stray dog and he and his friend take care of it. In the meantime he finds a girl that he likes and he joins the cross country team. This book can get very emotional because it talks about his parents divorce. And certain things like love. One of my favorite things in the book is how Strider the dog kind of sets the boy free and lets him experience life. The author of this book beverly cleary is a very inspirational le Strider is a very interesting book. In short it is about this boy that finds a stray dog and he and his friend take care of it. In the meantime he finds a girl that he likes and he joins the cross country team. This book can get very emotional because it talks about his parents divorce. And certain things like love. One of my favorite things in the book is how Strider the dog kind of sets the boy free and lets him experience life. The author of this book beverly cleary is a very inspirational leader. One of her most famous quotes is, “Children should learn that reading is pleasure, not just something that teachers make you do in school.” That makes so much sense to everyone involved. This is the first time I’ve attempted to review a children’s book, but having now read the whole thing I think Strider is great stuff. This is a great book for all ages. A quote from a fellow reader of this book states “I'm 45 -- not exactly Cleary's target audience. However, I found this clever and cute story absorbing.-Rena Sherwood”. This means that this book appeals to all types of people, male, female, short, tall, skinny, fat, old, young. This is just a great book in general. Definitely an 8.58/10.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer (JenIsNotaBookSnob)

    I hadn't realized this was a continuation of Dear Mr. Henshaw or I would have read it back when I read that book. Silly me! Anyhow, it's in journal format. For whatever reason that seems to make it feel like a quicker read. I liked it and it would probably be really enjoyable to read after Dear Mr. Henshaw. It's been awhile since I read the first book though. This book is all that you hoped for Leigh after his experiences in the first book. He still gets angry and defensive, but, he's getting be I hadn't realized this was a continuation of Dear Mr. Henshaw or I would have read it back when I read that book. Silly me! Anyhow, it's in journal format. For whatever reason that seems to make it feel like a quicker read. I liked it and it would probably be really enjoyable to read after Dear Mr. Henshaw. It's been awhile since I read the first book though. This book is all that you hoped for Leigh after his experiences in the first book. He still gets angry and defensive, but, he's getting better and making friends. In this book, Leigh is in 8th grade- I sort of wonder if 8th graders enjoyed this book back when it was published. This book is Lexile 820, so I guess it is an 8th grade reading level though right now the recommendation is that it's for grades 3-5 for interest level. I find all these things fascinating- Cleary included enough difficult vocabulary to make this an 8th grade book even though it is fairly short. Overall I liked it- it's about a dog Leigh finds and about dealing with divorced parents. His friends all have divorced parents as well so they can relate to each other. It's good, it just wasn't as fun as Cleary's other books.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Scott

    Beverly Cleary was always one of my favorites growing up so when I was at the library and saw this book and realized I had never read it (I thought I had read all her books) I had to check it out. There are some kid/YA books that are good no matter what age you are and there are others that really have to be enjoyed as a kid or young adult. It doesn't say anything about the quality of the book but I do think this book is best enjoyed as a kid. I read it and liked it well enough but I think I woul Beverly Cleary was always one of my favorites growing up so when I was at the library and saw this book and realized I had never read it (I thought I had read all her books) I had to check it out. There are some kid/YA books that are good no matter what age you are and there are others that really have to be enjoyed as a kid or young adult. It doesn't say anything about the quality of the book but I do think this book is best enjoyed as a kid. I read it and liked it well enough but I think I would have LOVED this book if I would have read it as a kid. We follow along with Liegh Botts as he goes through life, dealing with his divorced parents, getting a dog, dealing with school and crummy teachers and the track team, and "the girl" he might or might not like etc. No grand plot here but it doesn't have to be because Cleary is just that good of a writer. Recommended - highly recommended if you're in that age group, recommended if you are a completionist like me and just have to read everything that Cleary had ever written.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Random Scholar

    This sequel begins in the summer as Leigh is getting ready to enter high school for the first time. Over the summer Leigh and his friend Barry find a dog at the beach and name him Strider. During this time Leigh is still trying to sort out his relationship and feelings towards his father who still works a job that takes him away from Leigh for long hours. This book is different from the first in that all of the entries are simply diary entries and they are no longer written in the form of letter This sequel begins in the summer as Leigh is getting ready to enter high school for the first time. Over the summer Leigh and his friend Barry find a dog at the beach and name him Strider. During this time Leigh is still trying to sort out his relationship and feelings towards his father who still works a job that takes him away from Leigh for long hours. This book is different from the first in that all of the entries are simply diary entries and they are no longer written in the form of letters to the fictional author Mr. Henshaw anymore. At the same time, Leigh still shows an aspiration to become a writer by talking primarily about writing assignments he has to do in his English classes. I would recommend this to readers who want to know what happened to Leigh in the first book "Dear Mr. Henshaw". The subject matter of this book focuses primarily on struggles that are most common with adolescents (like crushes) so I think this book would be appreciated most by students in grades 6-12.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Katrina

    My youngest daughter read Dear Mr. Henshaw as part of her 3rd grade book club. When I raved to her teacher about how beneficial I think the in-class book clubs are and how much I like the books, especially Dear Mr. Henshaw, Mrs. Bridges clued me in about this sequel. I almost immediately downloaded it on my Kindle and read it, in it's entirety, this morning when I woke up way too early, finishing just before the kids woke. I almost like this book a little better than Dear Mr. Henshaw. The main ch My youngest daughter read Dear Mr. Henshaw as part of her 3rd grade book club. When I raved to her teacher about how beneficial I think the in-class book clubs are and how much I like the books, especially Dear Mr. Henshaw, Mrs. Bridges clued me in about this sequel. I almost immediately downloaded it on my Kindle and read it, in it's entirety, this morning when I woke up way too early, finishing just before the kids woke. I almost like this book a little better than Dear Mr. Henshaw. The main character Leigh is coming into himself, pushing limits, and developing relationships both with peers and his absent father. He is learning to appreciate what he has and value what matters, but all told within a relatable world of a 14-year-old boy. I was unaware of the Leigh Botts series before my daughter entered 3rd grade, but I'm glad I've read them now.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Gysell Zavala

    This book is the sequel to Dear Mr. Henshaw, in this book the main character Leigh Botts finds a stray dog and decides to co-parent with his friend but finds it extremely difficult when he wants to keep Strider for himself. Leigh feels extremely close to Strider and is able to get through the emotional struggle of his parents’ divorce by caring for this dog. He also has to run a lot to keep Strider exercised daily and is eventually noticed as a fast runner from the track coach. Life just keeps g This book is the sequel to Dear Mr. Henshaw, in this book the main character Leigh Botts finds a stray dog and decides to co-parent with his friend but finds it extremely difficult when he wants to keep Strider for himself. Leigh feels extremely close to Strider and is able to get through the emotional struggle of his parents’ divorce by caring for this dog. He also has to run a lot to keep Strider exercised daily and is eventually noticed as a fast runner from the track coach. Life just keeps getting better and better. I think that this could be a great book for readers who have also experienced the divorce of their parents and could potentially help them through that difficult time in their life. This book could help them feel like they are not alone and that it won’t always feel so crappy. Instead, this book can give readers hope that life will be normal in a way eventually.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Sue

    I haven’t read many kids books since I was a teacher of kids. However I read Strider for a delightful project that I’m working on. Beverly Cleary was a favorite of mine when I was a child, which was a long time ago! Strider is a delightful story about a boy and how he grows during the course of a year. The characters in the story are people that you would be happy to know. They are fine but realistic models to young readers. They have problems that their audience can relate to. Beverly Cleary, y I haven’t read many kids books since I was a teacher of kids. However I read Strider for a delightful project that I’m working on. Beverly Cleary was a favorite of mine when I was a child, which was a long time ago! Strider is a delightful story about a boy and how he grows during the course of a year. The characters in the story are people that you would be happy to know. They are fine but realistic models to young readers. They have problems that their audience can relate to. Beverly Cleary, you are still a favorite of mine!

  24. 4 out of 5

    Meg Thomas

    Confession - I swiped this from my son when he took it home from his school library and read it in an evening. I have always counted Dear Mr. Henshaw as one of my favorite books, so I was excited to find there was a sequel. It was fine. I think Leigh getting older made me miss some of the sweet, earnestness of his voice from the original. Still a cute book, and still showing Cleary dealing so well with heavy issues.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Janelle Fila

    I didn't love this as much as Dear Mr. Henshaw, perhaps because it was about running more than writing. But I think it also had to do with Leigh being older and not leaning on his Mom so much for love and support! That relationship was very tender in the first story, so I was sad to see Leigh grow up so fast! (That should tell how how amazing Beverly Cleary is. I'm talking about her character like he is real!) I didn't love this as much as Dear Mr. Henshaw, perhaps because it was about running more than writing. But I think it also had to do with Leigh being older and not leaning on his Mom so much for love and support! That relationship was very tender in the first story, so I was sad to see Leigh grow up so fast! (That should tell how how amazing Beverly Cleary is. I'm talking about her character like he is real!)

  26. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie Jones

    After finishing the Ramona and Henry Huggins Series, I picked up Strider thinking it was for my grade 1. After reading it, I admit I was wrong. This is a middle school book and I fully enjoyed reading Leigh Bott's thoughts. His struggle with joint custody, his feelings and his relationship with his parents and friends were very real struggles. I think this brought a good conversation with my preteens. After finishing the Ramona and Henry Huggins Series, I picked up Strider thinking it was for my grade 1. After reading it, I admit I was wrong. This is a middle school book and I fully enjoyed reading Leigh Bott's thoughts. His struggle with joint custody, his feelings and his relationship with his parents and friends were very real struggles. I think this brought a good conversation with my preteens.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Sue.the.very.busy.reader

    This week I read Strider by Beverly Cleary for #battleofthebooks2020. This book follows up on the book Dear Mr. Henshaw where Leigh continues to write about the events in his life. He is dealing with a lot of preteen issues like, beginning high school and making new friends. He is also dealing with his father’s absence. Leigh finds Strider and the dog helps him work through his loneliness and helps him find a new hobby and friends.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Chance Lee

    This is a follow-up to Dear Mr. Henshaw, the greatest book ever written. While not as perfect as that book, which may be the only perfect novel in human existence, it is still a great read. I'm not a dog person, but I almost understood the bond between boy and canine after reading this. There is also a scene in which young Leigh realizes that his divorced dad is lonely and wishes he were nicer to him that almost made me wish I had been nicer to my own divorced dad. So it goes. This is a follow-up to Dear Mr. Henshaw, the greatest book ever written. While not as perfect as that book, which may be the only perfect novel in human existence, it is still a great read. I'm not a dog person, but I almost understood the bond between boy and canine after reading this. There is also a scene in which young Leigh realizes that his divorced dad is lonely and wishes he were nicer to him that almost made me wish I had been nicer to my own divorced dad. So it goes.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Natalia

    This one is better than the first, but still lacks something significant . It just feels flat and mundane. There is no interesting story to it, just everyday routines. I guess if a child likes dogs, this book might be appealing but I doubt anybody would say that this book changed their outlook on life or inspired them in any way. I did not like it enough to recommend to my kids.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Cass Winters

    While I did enjoy this book, I felt that "Dear Mr. Henshaw" (the first book in the series) was a stronger book with a very different thematic feel to it. I was expecting somewhat similar in feel and this was definitely not that. It was a more watered down version of what I was expecting based on the feeling of maturity in the other one. While I did enjoy this book, I felt that "Dear Mr. Henshaw" (the first book in the series) was a stronger book with a very different thematic feel to it. I was expecting somewhat similar in feel and this was definitely not that. It was a more watered down version of what I was expecting based on the feeling of maturity in the other one.

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