There is a saying that goes, "Dogs are a man's best friend." For 5-year-old Ivan Andreovich, his dogs mean so much more than that.
In the wake of his grandmother's death, his mother's disappearance, and an abusive man's attempt to throw him into an orphanage, Ivan escapes to the streets of Moscow. He quickly joins a gang of children, only to find out that he is the opposite of "street smart." They push and bully him into doing things that he knows are not right, but what choice does he have in order to endure the cold winter?
Then, Ivan comes across a dog named Lucky. Lucky leads him to his pack, and they start to share a mutual relationship of helping each other survive. Why would he leave humans to go live with a pack of dogs? Ivan says, "I was better off with the dogs. They loved and protected me." But is he truly better off with his pack, or at an orphanage among abused and underfed children who are his own kind?
Through the innocent eyes of a child, we learn about love, life, death, and a bond that can never be broken. Based on the true story of Ivan Mishukov, Bobbie Pyron captures both the horrors and rays of sunlight that were the essence of life on the streets of Russia.
—Elysse, STACKS Writer