Best Pet of All

The Best Pet of All
by David LaRochelle
illustrated by Hanako Wakiyama
Dutton Books, 2004
Ages 4 to 8
ISBN 978-0-14-241272-5


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When a boy’s mother won’t let him have a dog for a pet, he asks if he can have a dragon instead. Enter the coolest, but naughtiest, pet ever. This dragon is messier and louder than any dog, and he will not leave. Only a clever plan on the part of the boy can bring about a happy ending for everyone.


Teachers and librarians! Give your students the chance to become stars with this easy-to-read Reader's Theatre script of The Best Pet of All, adapted by master media specialist Julie Reimer. No costumes or sets necessary!

Second grade artist Simon shows off his award-winning creation for his school's "Literary Pumpkins" contest.

Awards and Recognition

Booksense Top Ten Children’s Books – Autumn 2004
Child Magazine 2004 Best Books
2005 Minnesota Book Award
2006 New Hampshire Ladybug Picture Book Award nominee
2006-07 California Young Reader Medal nominee
2007 St. Paul Reads Book Club selection
2009-2010 Belgium Children's Jury Award nominee

Book Reviews

“A fresh, fun frolic.”

“A happy wag of the kid-wants-dog tale, with guaranteed giggles.”

Lucky me! Actress Reese Witherspoon chose The Best Pet of All to read out loud during the Easter Egg Roll at The White House!
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