Chunky and Luna Howls At The Moon - New Releases We Love from Katherine Tegan Books

 Have you ever read books that you just KNEW were going to be hits with your students? After receiving these books from SparkPoint I started to see some buzz going around on social media about their popularity. Little did I know that everyone was right. After reading, I couldn't agree more and am so excited to book talk when we get back into the classroom. 


This graphic novel ranks up there with New Kid for me in terms of "GET IN THE HANDS OF STUDENTS!" I absolutely loved the message behind this story. The situations are so real, so much Hudi’s life, and I love that he shared these personal situations with kids especially. I know others wish he had support from someone in the story more than his imaginary friend Chunky, but in these situations sometimes an imaginary friend is all someone has until someone sees the reality, they read a book, or they find a teacher/mentor to support them.
Hudi mentioned in his acknowledgments he had support from his family, but he felt compelled to follow the trend of sports yet the arts is where his heart remained.

This story will resonate with so many. I can’t wait to share with students. Especially paired with Starfish by Lisa Fipps. 


In this full-color middle grade graphic memoir for fans of Raina Telgemeier and Jerry Craft, Yehudi Mercado draws inspiration from his childhood struggle with his weight while finding friendship with his imaginary mascot, Chunky, as he navigates growing up in a working-class Mexican Jewish family.

Hudi needs to lose weight, according to his doctors. Concerned about the serious medical issue Hudi had when he was younger, his parents push him to try out for sports. Hudi would rather do anything else, but then he meets Chunky, his imaginary friend and mascot. Together, they decide to give baseball a shot.

Hudi has found the cheerleader he never had, as Chunky cheers him on even when Hudi barely makes the team. Baseball doesn’t go well (unless getting hit by the ball counts), but the two friends have a great time drawing and making jokes. While Hudi’s parents keep trying to find the right sport for him, Chunky encourages him to pursue his true love—comedy.

But when Hudi’s dad loses his job, it gets harder for Hudi to chart his own course, even with Chunky’s guidance. Can Chunky help Hudi stay true to himself, or will this friendship strike out?

The story is told in Luna's POV (set in Austin, just right up the road from me!) - the dog on the cover. Luna is a therapy dog that helps 4 separate kids. Luna deals with some bullying from the other dogs for not being "THE BEST" (Her 50 visit pin) - Luna absolutely loves working with her doctor. Luna has moments where she does get confused in helping 4 different kids with 4 different situations. Therapy dogs are so important and at my old elementary we had a therapy dog on campus and it was the best for the kids - this story would be fantastic for those who are used to seeing a dog come in for support. The kids Luna works with she nicknames: a shadow, a knot, a waterfall, and a rock, their normal routine is disturbed by rock's absence, Luna and the other 3 kiddos set off on an adventure to foreign places to Luna while she's trying to protect them - it's the ultimate adventure. The first chapter is captivating and will hook readers through the writing style and emotions. A great book for a read aloud for 3rd/4th/5th. This book will appeal to readers 3rd and up. There is brilliant imagery which had me feeling all the emotions all the time. 


The award-winning author of A Dog Like Daisy returns with a moving middle grade novel from the point of view of Luna, a Labrador therapy dog who accompanies her group therapy kids when they set off on an adventure across Austin, Texas.

Luna has always wanted to be a therapy dog at Therapy Dogs Worldwide. Now she’s a whisker away from reaching her fifty-visit pin that will make it official. But when her “clients”—the children who visit her—are put into a therapy group, Luna’s routine is upended.

Like the moon, Luna shows different faces at different times. And her clients each have different needs—Beatrice is tangled in knots of anger, Caleb rushes like a waterfall, Amelia carries fear heavy like a shadow, and Hector is quiet as a rock. To comfort the kids, Luna can be what they need her to be, but can she be everything to them all at once?

When Hector doesn’t show up to a session one day, the kids set off on an unexpected quest to find him. Luna joins to keep them safe, and they must work together to almost learn the truth.

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