Posted in 2013-2014 Club, Not Mock Newbery

Finding Zasha, by Randi Barrow

Finding ZashaSummary: Twelve-year-old Ivan has escaped from the siege of Leningrad, but when the town he has taken refuge in is occupied by Hitler’s troops, he sees his chance to help the partisans he has met–and to rescue two German shepherd puppies, Zasha and Thor, from the cruel Commander Recht.

Scholastic

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3 thoughts on “Finding Zasha, by Randi Barrow

  1. At the beginning of this book the main character Ivan is living a reletively normal life for this time period. By the end of the story he has joined the partisans, spyed, helped two dogs and his friend escape. Ivan’s character developes so much and at the end he is an entirely different peson. Besides the character developement, the plot is interesting too. I read this book expecting the ussual dog story but was surprised. The story was not mainly about dogs, yet they were an extremely important part without boring the plot or making it predictable. I have never read a book with a plot like this. The only two things that I did not like about this book were the beginning and the end. The beginning was really predictable and I could predict excactly what each character was going to say. The end left me with an unfinnished feeling, like Ivan should have done something for Zasha who was missing but instead he just packs up and decides to go home which is like a gazillion miles away for a reason I did not understand.
    The writing style was not the greatest either. This was a fun read but I don’t think it is the best book.

    1. Since this one is a prequel to Saving Zasha, the end made sense to me. Unfortunately, we are reading to find a Newbery winner that is complete in itself.

  2. I agree with Krista about the end. His dog is somewhere in the vast reaches of Russia, but he decides to go home. I mean, he has risked his life for Zasha, but then he just leaves her in the wilderness while he heads for home. Overall, I don’t think it could win the Newbery.

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