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Julia Gillian and the Dream of the Dog (Julia Gillian Trilogy #3)

4.11 of 5 stars 4.11  ·  rating details  ·  99 ratings  ·  34 reviews
The quirky and lovable Julia Gillian faces her toughest challenge yet in this touching conclusion to the trilogy.

Julia Gillian is a true dog person.

She likes all dogs, but she loves the Dog of her Dreams, Bigfoot, best of all. Julia Gillian and Bigfoot have grown up together and they can even understand each other’s telepathically beamed thoughts. So when Bigfoot starts to
Paperback, 336 pages
Published May 1st 2011 by Scholastic Press (first published July 1st 2010)
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I can't remember the last time I cried over a book. Oh, wait -- yes I can. It was this one, last night.
Grades 4-6

Julia Gillian is back, and sixth grade is off to a tough start as she and her friends have to face the Sevvies and Crazy Eights-- the older middle school kids. To make matters worse, she and her third grade reading buddy need to work together to complete a reading project, and neither of them likes to read. And her beloved St. Bernard, Bigfoot, who has already lived beyond the normal life expectancy for his breed, is in poor health. As much as Julia tries to take her teacher's advice
The Rusty Key
Reviewed by Rusty Key Writer: Jordan B. Nielsen

Recommended for: Girls, Ages 8 and Up for themes of death and grief. Parents, put tissues and some good, cheer-me-up ice cream on your shopping list.

One Word Summary: Heartfelt

What a treat and a delight to get to know Julia Gillian. Following in the footsteps of Judy Blume’s ‘Ramona’ books, Alison McGhee has exemplified the best aspects of middle grade serial fiction through Julia, creating a character that young readers can grow with, laugh with,
Julia Gillian has just became a sixth grader when events start turning around her like they never have. Being a sixth grader she no longer can rely on her teachers and parents to guide her through life and that means she has to control for variables. The middle school halls seem frightening as she starts to battle her way through the year with the "Crazy Eights", the eighth graders in the school. When everything seems to have gotten under control, her beloved dog Bigfoot is slowing down and can ...more
Julia Gillian's world is a little troubling right now. She has been teamed with a stern-faced third grader for her Reading Buddy and has no idea how to help him love to read when she's not so thrilled with it herself. Worse, her beloved and steadfast companion, Bigfoot, is getting to be an old dog. Julia Gillian is determined to account for all variables, though, so everything should be fine, right? In this third book in the trilogy of Julia Gillian and Bigfoot, JG is still the worrier she alway ...more
I read this book to my son and we both enjoyed it. We originally picked it up because the title character shares a name with my four-year-old daughter, her request. I attempted to read it to the four-year-old, but it didn't hold her interest. It did hold the interest of my nine-year-old son and every night we read a chapter or two. This is the book that got us reading together again, which had waned as he became an independent reader.

I really enjoyed this book and wish we had started with the fi
Julia Gillian is glad to be a 6th grader, except for one thing--they have to go to the 3rd floor--domain of the "Crazy Eights"--to use the bathroom. 8th graders are loud and big and scary. But this isn't Julia Gillian's only problem. She's trying to establish a world record for successive basketball
free throws, but she can't get past 144. Her dog has an enlarged heart and is slowly dying. And she's paired with a 3rd grade reading buddy who hates to read, just like she does, and she has to find a
Miz Lizzie
Julia Gillian's fear of a book about a dog and its sad ending, in her first adventure in Julia Gillian (and the Art of Knowing), comes full circle in her third adventure. Her beloved Saint Bernard, Bigfoot, is the exact same age as Julia Gillian but eleven is a lot older in dog years. Now a "sixlet" and part of the second and third floor middle school at Lake Harriet School, Julia Gillian tries in vain to control all the variables in her life, most especially Bigfoot's inevitable mortality. Alon ...more
Eva Mitnick
This is the third in this light and charming series. Life isn't wildly exciting in Julia's Uptown Minneapolis neighborhood, which is just fine with me - I'm happy to read about her family, her neighbors, her dog, her school (she's in 6th grade now), and her friends. However, as in the last installment, there is a plot contrivance to add tension to the story - in this case, it's the fear the 6th graders have of the 8th graders at school, and Julia's fear of one 8th grader in particular. It just i ...more
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Kira M for

Julia is starting sixth grade and middle school.

Instead of enjoying recess, Julia is now stuck "controlling variables," dealing with older school bullies, facing a reluctant reading buddy, and seeing mounds and mounds of homework.

To make matters worse, Julia's old dog, Bigfoot, is slowing down, and this is the final straw. Julia's world is falling apart.

Can she find a way to get her life under control - or will it get the best of her?

A short, fun read for a
Jenn Estepp
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Very good book! Julia Gillian is a lot like me. Hey, my name is Julia! But I don't like it when Bigfoot dies and she's all sad about it because that just makes me sad and think that my new dog Leo will die soon.
An easy read in terms of reading level (it might be 327 pages, but the layout is double spaced so it goes very quickly) but not as much in terms of content.

Julia loves her dog Bigfoot. But Bigfoot is getting old. You can guess what happens. But that's good. It wouldn't hurt so badly if there hadn't been so much love to begin with.

Loved the whole "controlling for variables" bit. May have to try that for my own organizational mishaps. :/
I really hated the first Julia Gillian book, but I'm so glad I read the others. I finished it in less than an hour and cried really hard, which is odd, because I'm a cat person and I didn't cry over Where the Red Fern Grows, which is, like, one of the saddest books of all time. The part that got me was when Julia Gillian sang to Bigfoot about everything they'd experienced together. I'm starting to tear up, so I think I'll end this.
Sarah Sullivan
Very sweet, very sincere book for younger readers (definitely on the younger spectrum of middle grade here, targeting an audience that's recently moved up from easy readers). Wonderful main character with illustrations that perfectly complement the story that's being told. The third in a series that has been consistently high quality.
I really liked this book. I have been reading quite a few youth books lately before choosing which ones to give to my granddaughters. I read the 3rd one in this series first and really enjoyed it. It was kind of sad at the end but that kind of sadness is part of life and we can't hide it from children.
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I love these books so much and this one is just as good as the first. Bring your tissues though - thoughtful, loving, straightforward and heartbreaking all in the very best of ways.
Do not read this if you are suffering from a head cold and are prone to crying at certain scenes from books about beloved and aging pets.
Nelly Paulina
Daughter was in tears tonight over this sad and hard little story. She'll hopefully have the heart to revisit it.
So, I actaully finished this book a while ago...
but! the ending was sooooooooo sad, it's crazy.
Tracie I did need my tissues! Beautifully done on such a hard subject for kids of all ages.
I really enjoyed this book. The story was so touching and almost a tear jerker.
I love this book even though it has a sad ending it teaches a good lesson
Mary Lee
"The hardest thing about being human is that we love what is mortal."
iTS A sad story if u are a dog lover but its good!
Sweet story about the love and loss if a dog.
Laura Salas
So good, even if it did make me cry!
Lizzie Daigle
kind of sad! :( but it was awesome
What a tearjerker...
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Alison McGhee is the award-winning author of picture books, poems, and novels for all ages, including the young adult novel ALL RIVERS FLOW TO THE SEA and the #1 NEW YORK TIMES bestseller SOMEDAY, illustrated by Peter H. Reynolds. Alison McGhee lives in Minnesota.
More about Alison McGhee...

Other Books in the Series

Julia Gillian Trilogy (3 books)
  • Julia Gillian (and The Art Of Knowing)
  • Julia Gillian And the Quest for Joy
Someday Shadow Baby Julia Gillian (and The Art Of Knowing) All Rivers Flow To The Sea Snap

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