HOME SCHOOL BOOK REVIEW
Book: Rin Tin Tin’s Rinty: An Original Story Featuring Rinty, Son of the Famous Movie Dog, Rin Tin Tin
Author: Julie Campbell
Illustrator: Rene Martin
Publisher: Kessinger Publishing LLC, republished 2010
Language level: 2
(1=nothing objectionable; 2=common euphemisms and/or childish slang terms; 3=some cursing and/or profanity; 4=a lot of cursing and/or profanity; 5=obscenity and/or vulgarity)
Recommended reading level: Ages 12-16
Rating: ***** 5 stars (EXCELLENT)
Reviewed by Wayne S. Walker
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Campbell, Julie. Rin Tin Tin’s Rinty: An Original Story Featuring Rinty, Son of the Famous Movie Dog, Rin Tin Tin (published in 1954 by Whitman Publishing Company, Racine, WI). Fifteen year old Don Lockwood and his going-on-thirteen year old sister Shirley live with their parents in a ranch style house on four acres of land at the edge of a small town in southern California. Down the road from their home is the Alison Kennels where pure bred German Shepherds are raised. The latest litter’s father is a direct descendant of the original Rin Tin Tin. Mr. Alison and his manager John give the runt of the litter to Don and Shirley. They name him Rinty. However, one of the Alison workers named Bert feels that he should have had the pup in exchange for his service so that he could sell it for money.
After Bert is fired, he manages to steal Rinty and sells him to a pet store in Nevada. There he is purchased by owners of a mink ranch in New Jersey. Yet, after taking the dog to their home, they see that he is not happy. While they debate what to do, Rinty escapes. What happens to him? Can he make it all the way across the country back to the Lockwoods? Will Don and Shirley ever see their dog again? And how will the return of Bert affect the situation? When I was little, one of my favorite television shows was The Adventures of Rin Tin Tin, which was set in the Old West. The first Rin Tin Tin was rescued in World War I and then starred in several movies.
Various descendants of Rin Tin Tin were then featured in radio series, television shows, and books. Rin Tin Tin’s Rinty is a great adventure fiction story for young adults. With all the various incidents on Rinty’s long way home, it is certainly written in a way that will keep one’s interest all the way through. A couple of common euphemisms (gosh, darn) are found, but there is nothing unsuitable or inappropriate in the book to keep it from being a good family read-aloud for all ages or being used by younger children. However, the style of writing and the complexity of the plot will probably appeal more to older readers. And for many of us, it can bring back some happy childhood memories.