Rescue & Jessica: A Life-Changing Friendship

Ages: 5 - 9Publisher: Candlewick Press Author: Jessica Kensky, Patrick DownesIllustrator: Scott Magoon


Authors Jessica Kensky and Patrick Downes, both of whom lost limbs in the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing and who are now married, pay tribute in this sweet children’s picture book to the service dogs that bring hope, comfort, and happiness back into the lives of those they serve. Soulfully illustrated by Scott Magoon, and based on Kensky’s experience with black lab named Rescue, the book begins when puppy Rescue learns he is to be a service dog, not a Seeing Eye dog as he expected, and wonders how he’ll do. His story parallels that of a young girl named Jessica, who has just lost her leg, and wonders what her life will be like without it. In pictures and words, Jessica finds companionship, independence, and new happiness with Rescue-and both discover that they have “rescued each other.” In an afterword, the authors include information about the real Rescue dog and the non-profit organization (NEADS/World Class Service Dogs) that trained him.

Lynne Heffley ©2018 Parents’ Choice

A freelance writer and editor for the arts and non-profit organizations, Lynne is a former staff writer for the Los Angeles Times, where she established the paper’s first weekly children’s arts and entertainment beat.

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