by Karen English (2013)
Being the “new kid” means adjusting to a new town and school and meeting and making new friends. Third grader Gavin has to navigate all of this while dealing with an annoying sister, a meddling aunt, a pesky Pomeranian, and a brutish bully. In the first book of the Carver Chronicles series, Gavin and his new friend Richard get into some trouble during a playdate, forcing Gavin to take responsibility and earn money to pay for his mistake. Walking his great-aunt’s dog every day during her week-long visit is not his favorite after school activity, but it does provide some opportunities for mishaps, adventure, and meeting new people, including an older bully named Harper. Will Gavin be able to tolerate his sister and aunt and successfully pay for his mistake, all while trying to maintain a friendship with Richard? How will he handle Harper and his incessant bullying? And most importantly, will he come to appreciate the yapping little ankle biter he has always despised? Readers of Dog Days will fall in love with and root for Gavin, learning along with him the importance of respecting your elders, taking responsibility for your actions, making new friends, and dealing with bullies. Reading this book will make you want to continue the adventures of Gavin and his classmates by reading more books in the Carver Chronicles series.