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A hound at Hotel Del Coronado shares history with a little girl in: OZ, DOG OF THE DEL

By Taylor Baldwin Kiland

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OZ, DOG OF THE DEL, is a sweet little kids' story with special appeal for dog-lovers and fans of California history alike.

A dachshund who lives at the Hotel Del Coronado escorts a little girl named Izzy around the island, introducing her to famous people and events.

Izzy is a little girl in the early twentieth century, who goes for her summer vacation to the Hotel Del Coronado in California. She is a bit nervous about being lonely, until she meets Oz, the Dog of the Del, a dachshund who lives at the hotel. They explore the island, seeing interesting sights like an ostrich farm and meeting people like Charles Lindbergh, Charlie Chaplin and Frank Baum. By the end of the day, both are tired, but have enjoyed themselves thoroughly and become firm friends.

This is a charming little book about a hotel with a great deal of historical interest. Palermino’s illustrations are vivid, dramatic, and eye-catching, while remaining simple enough for a child to clearly understand what is going on. Kiland’s narrative leads the pair through a variety of adventures, providing a gently-educational history of the area and introduction to famous figures without being preachy or overdidactic. An “About the Book” section at the back gives details about the people and places to which Izzy and Oz are introduced. Putting a few of those details in the story itself might add interest, though – perhaps, for example, a simple mention of what kind of movies Charlie Chaplin made or what Frank Baum’s books are about. The book is written in rhyme, which gives it flair, but it could use more attention to consistency of the rhyme scheme and meter, which are particularly important for a book designed to be read aloud.  For example, meeting Charlie Chaplin: “Oz and Izzy kept running, and they ran into a man/Walking like a penguin, he had a plan/’My name is Charlie and this is Kiki/Come be in my movie. It will be groovy.’”

Oz, Dog of the Del, is a sweet little kids’ story with special appeal for dog-lovers and fans of California history alike.


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