George McCray, the 12-year-old hero of this amicable holiday story, is wrestling with a lot: his father's died, his mother's left him with his grandparents on their dairy farm (where he's expected to pull more than his share of work), and he's reluctantly "inherited" a dog, Tucker, from the alcoholic next door. After a rocky start, Tucker soon becomes George's best friend and gives him the strength to take on his challenges and move into adulthood. Cute, hopeful, and residing on the safe side of saccharine, this heartwarming if unoriginal tale should appeal especially to younger readers. (Nov.) Copyright 2010 Reed Business Information.
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