A rescued beagle and his boy owner seek love and understanding for their troubled small town in this holiday companion to the Newbery Medal–winning Shiloh, from Phyllis Reynolds Naylor.
Christmas is coming and Marty and his rescued pup Shiloh are sure glad about that—for their town is running low on love and understanding and they hope that the joy of the holiday will bring with it the generosity of spirit that’s so lacking.
It’s been a year since Marty Preston rescued Shiloh from Judd Travers and his cruel ways, and since then, Marty and Shiloh have been inseparable. Anywhere Marty goes, the beagle’s at his side, and Marty couldn’t be happier about that. Even Judd has been working to improve his reputation.
But just as the townsfolk grow more accepting of Judd, a fire in the woods destroys many homes, including Judd’s, and Judd’s newly formed reputation. Doubt, blame, and anger spread faster than the flames—flames that are fanned by the new minister, who seems fonder of fire and brimstone than love and mercy. And why are his daughters so skittish around him? And what’s happened to Judd’s dogs? With Christmas right around the corner, Marty has a lot of questions, and getting the right answers might just take a Christmas miracle.
Phyllis Reynolds Naylor’s fourth book in the Newbery Award–winning Shiloh series—following Shiloh, Shiloh Season, and Saving Shiloh—“seamlessly interlaces themes of tolerance, compassion, and forgiveness…[and] explores the interconnectedness of family members, communities, and the dogs they love” (Publishers Weekly, starred review).
Nearly 20 years after Saving Shiloh (1997), Naylor adds a fourth title to the trilogy that began with her Newbery Medal winning Shiloh. Set a year after Marty and Shiloh were reunited in the previous book, this installment begins with a summer drought and makes its way past Halloween and Thanksgiving to conclude with a restorative Christmas meal shared by characters who don't always see eye to eye. Along the way, Marty wrestles with the arrival of a new preacher who focuses on sin and punishment over love and forgiveness (and whose home life raises some tough moral questions for Marty's family), as well as a damaging fire that destroys the home of a newly repentant Judd Travers. Naylor seamlessly interlaces themes of tolerance, compassion, and forgiveness in this poignant story as she explores the interconnectedness of family members, communities, and the dogs they love. Ages 8 12.