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The Angel Knew Papa and the Dog
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The Angel Knew Papa and the Dog

4.41  ·  Rating details ·  268 ratings  ·  51 reviews
Without Mama, life in the log house at the forest's edge can be lonely for a little girl. But there's Papa for company, and the two mules, Bartholomew and Thaddeus Frisco, and the big old dog that mysteriously showed up at the end of winter. Everything about her little homestead seems sheltering and secure--that is, until an ominous storm settles over the valley and ...more
Paperback, 2nd, 108 pages
Published April 25th 2017 by Rabbit Room (first published September 9th 1996)
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Average rating 4.41  · 
Rating details
 ·  268 ratings  ·  51 reviews

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R.F. Gammon
Jun 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Smol list of things to love about this book:

-it’s deep
-it’s precious
-it’s got a small child protagonist
-God’s protection is so important
-Papa is so sweet
-I love the donkeys
-I cried
-the writing style makes me ache but in a good way
-the single dog is named “Lewis and Clark”
-I just really loved this okay
-new favorite
Mar 30, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
All stories have a fixed length (you can tell by the ones that get stretched too far and lose themselves), and this one is no exception. But when you read it, short as it is, you'll both wish it could have been longer, but understand it ought not be.
Sep 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
Since first reading Douglas Kaine McKelvey in the "Wingfeather Tales", I wanted to read more of his books. This is a very interesting book, one that's hard to put into a specific category. It's short enough to read with a young child; the writing style is lyrical and imaginative, something that older readers can appreciate; the content and themes might challenge or upset a young, sensitive reader, but those same themes could be great discussion topics for a parent with a child. Loss. The ...more
Carol Bakker
Read to my younger grands in one sitting.

This is a numinous account of a young girl and her papa who eke out a life from a cabin in the woods by a river. The mama died (perhaps in childbirth?); her absence is not just stated but a present reality.

There are wondrous elements in this story: animals both patient and cantankerous, classic books (I *must* read Piers Plowman soon), biblical literacy, folk wisdom, a flood, and an angel. Psalm 23 is never directly referenced, but is woven throughout.
Apr 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This a strong little book. Beautiful writing and emotionally rich story telling. I do wish that it was the first of a series and that there were more coming.
Jul 17, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: ellie
Picked this up from the author at the GHC for Ellie and Jacob. Ellie read this for her family summer reading program...krb 7/17/17
Autumn Klepper
Jun 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Beautiful story...timeless & meaningful.
Sep 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Fine folk-tale dealing with loss and family love. Nice short read for 6 or 7 year olds and older with some great turns of phrase throughout.

Mar 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A simple story, that like the flood, sneaks up on you with its powerful undercurrent of depth to display the ordinary and extraordinary ways that we are woven together in the middle of pain and uncertainty into a tapestry of grace that we know incompletely but perceive in part through such beautiful stories as this.
Mar 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Beautiful story. I read this in just a few evenings as I was readying for bed. As I finished the last page, I cried. Both from the story's own sadness to the personal feelings of lost dreams, mamas and life as we know/knew it.
I purchased this book from the local homeschool convention for our family & had the author sign it - I was not 100 % sure what the story line was, but just had a hunch it would be a family favorite. He signed it to my children "Be very brave" - perfect words for this
Autumn Curry
Aug 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: children
I read this book because it was offered for free on Amazon. The Angel Knew Papa and the Dog is both very short as it is extremely different. This could both be read and enjoyed by a child or an adult. The chapters are lyrical, unresolved, and also very sad at times. The little girl's mother passed away and she lives in a log cabin with her father; their life is simple, but followed by her child-like excitement. After a storm comes, the little girl is very frightened that a flood will take her ...more
Oct 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2017
This book is relatively short, a pleasant children's fiction chapter book. While I read this book, perhaps it's not fair for me to count it. Sometimes I struggle with falling and/or staying asleep at night, and in those situations, I'll grab my Kindle to read until I'm tired again. This was a book I read during a couple of those middle-of-the-night stretches. All that to say, my memory is foggy in points.

Here's what I do know: it's beautifully written, and the ending seemed abrupt to me after
Aug 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Rich in imagery and metaphor, this story is for all ages, and one I will re-read and share for years to come. I was swept up into it and deeply struck at 2 different moments in the story. The ending leads the reader to a beginning of sorts. The author's note, after 21 years of hindsight in writing the story, gave the story a richer aftertaste for me. What an awesome and unexpected place to find ourselves revealed! Highly recommend.
Ashley Jacobson
This book was fabulous! As good as the classics like Little House on the Prairie, that take you to another world and acquaint you with a family you soon fall in love with. Also packed with an adventure like story and a heart wrenching plot of relationships and experiences. It was a quick read and a fun experience! I want there to be another story about these characters.
Aug 07, 2018 rated it liked it
People seem to love The Angel Knew Papa and the Dog, but I’m just kind of meh about it. It was a relatively sweet story, but I never really cared much about what happened to any of the characters. The angel part was very anti-climactic. It’s very short, so if you want to read it, it’s not much of a time investment, but I wouldn’t go out of my way to do so.
Teri Hannan
Feb 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I had no idea what to expect when I picked this book up. I am a fan of The Rabbit Room, so I had heard of this book and it’s reprinting. It is a short read but it is not a flippant or mindless read. The story has endeared itself to me and I expect it will be a book I reach for over and over again. I especially loved this version’s author’s note.
Lara Lleverino
What a beautiful beautiful story! Douglas Kaine McKelvey has spirit of Tolkien and Solomon wrapped in his writing! Such beautiful imagery and such sehnsucht! Yes this book should be read aloud in winter by a fire to kids everywhere! Grab the tissues it will make you cry the way Where the Red Fern Grows makes you cry!
Josh Bishop
May 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
"It was a world of wonders, Papa once told me, for anyone who cared to slow down and take a look."

This is a beautiful and surprising little book, both sorrowful and deeply comforting. It'll take all of an hour to read. For me, it somehow felt like coming home.
Kay Pelham
Jun 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent story. Read it to your children

A story very well told. This is the best "chapter book" I've ever read. Read it to your children and grandchildren. The author's Afterword is very moving, as well.
Feb 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
An unexpectedly moving tale, short and concentrated with gentle emotion.
Jun 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

This is a surprising and wonderful story. It had a similar feeling to me as Peace Like a River. I was shocked by the ending and feel that it was a deeply moving story.
Feb 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
I really liked this. I think I especially liked that it doesn't cross all the t's and dot all the i's. It is a bittersweet story. Worth the short time it takes to read it.
Sarah Middlestead
Feb 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
With few words, McKelvey leaves us heartbroken, but yet hopeful.
Mindy Pickens
Dec 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mom-2018
This is simply beautiful.
amica mea
Dec 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Magical, made me cry, not heavy handed. Glorious. My only sadness was that it was so very short, but even that worked.
Deborah Lund
Jun 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved it!

Just a beautiful story I can see reading to my granddaughter when she's older. Absolutely loved it, and definitely recommend!
Julie Huisingh
Jul 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
85 pages. Loved the writing.
Daniel Coughlin
Jul 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Quirky and relatable

This was a quirky, but relatable story. I read it aloud to my kids over the span of two evenings. We all thoroughly enjoyed it. We were surprised—perhaps disappointed—at the abrupt ending. The story is full of authentic emotional drivers, but did not feel manipulative. Moments of joy, sadness, comfort, and danger. I would highly recommend the book as a pleasant, thought provoking, quick read.
Dec 31, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Later on a lot of things happened that none of us expected, but those are part of a whole different story that will have to wait for another telling. After all, as Papa likes to say, you can't ride two horses at one time."

This was a sweet little story and I'm hoping that someday Douglas Kaine McKelvey will give us another telling of that whole different story.
Nick Jones
Feb 20, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very good, although it felt like an excerpt of a larger novel (which I would have loved to read).
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The remote descendant of Scottish horse-thieving ancestors, Douglas Kaine McKelvey has already bested the dubious achievements of his predecessors by penning five published books and penning lyrics for more than 250 songs recorded by a variety of artists including Kenny Rogers, Switchfoot, and Jason Gray.

Douglas is currently completing the manuscript for a YA sci-fi/fantasy novel and making slow
“I could almost picture how when God was reaching down and closing the door of the ark, Noah might have been in there standing on tiptoe trying to see out for as long as he could. The Bible says Noah was six hundred years old when he went into the ark. I bet he noticed things in that last minute that he hadn’t paid any attention at all to for the last five hundred fifty years. I” 2 likes
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