COOP THE GREAT, by Larry Verstraete, Great Plains/Yellow Dog


Coop is an aging, cynical, down-and-out dachshund who faces the ultimate test when his new owner, Mike, and Mike’s grandchildren, Zach and Emma, run into trouble. Mike rescued him, but does Coop have what it takes to do the same?

Drawing strength from the stories about great dogs that Mike shares with him, Coop charts a dangerous journey to save his new family.

Out November 15th, 2018



Writer and educator LARRY VERSTRAETE is a former elementary school teacher and university instructor. He is an award-winning author of sixteen books for young people, an active promoter of books and literacy, and a frequent visitor to schools and libraries where he shares his passion for writing, science and great adventures. He’s travelled all over the world, but calls Winnipeg home.


I received a galley of this book in exchange for my honest review.

Every now and then, I come across a book that hits me so hard that I can’t stop thinking about it, this is one such book.  I have to confess, I’ve read this book four, yes that’s right, four times.  The first time, I read the story through for a review and thought wow, what the heck was that?  I did not see THAT coming (as I sighed and wiped a tear or two away) So I read it again.  Then I read it to my daughter, who is special needs, and she absolutely loved it. After a couple of weeks of being unable to get it out of my mind, I read it for a fourth time and experienced all the emotions again: sadness, happiness, joy, humor, satisfaction, horror, anger, frustration, hope, peace…

This is one of those situations when you stumble across a book that is underhyped, hardly known, and written by an author exuding incredible talent, a talent that is missed or unnoticed because of timing or all the attention given to other equally exciting books being published at the same time.  The story is heart-warming and heart-wrenching and should not be missed.

In a way, you can equate the main character and events surrounding him to human dilemmas often felt and experienced during the latter years of life.  Coop has a beautiful personality and enduring soul that will pierce yours and stick with you for a very long time after you read the final page.  I believe this book could be categorized in many levels, from middle-grade to adult fiction.  In fact, I can see a movie being made based on this story, maybe a Hallmark television movie even.

I recommend you pick it up and give it a read, especially if you love dogs/animals and wonder about the relationships/feelings they have toward those humans who interact with them throughout their lives. Oh… get ready to cheer for Coop, The Great!

I wish I could give this book 100 stars, but, I am forced to only give it a meager five out of five.  Well done!

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2 thoughts on “COOP THE GREAT, by Larry Verstraete, Great Plains/Yellow Dog

  1. Reblogged this on Larry Verstraete and commented:
    Waiting for reviews when a book is first released is a nail-biting experience. The book is out there. There’s no way to retrieve it. No way to change the story. So when this first review for Coop the Great surfaced in November, I was hoping and praying. Here’s what Janet Sliplak of My Book Abyss had to say.


  2. Pingback: THEODORE AND THE ENCHANTED BOOKSTORE, TALE OF THE SPECTACULAR SPECTACLES, by K. Kibbee, Illustrations by J.H. Winter, Incorgnito Publishing Press | MY BOOK ABYSS

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