Blog Tour: Book Review: Second Chance by Sandra J. Gerencher

The timeless tale of a boy (with autism) and his (shelter) dog. Over the past 10 years, author Sandra Gerencher has been on a mission to save dogs from high-kill animal shelters. Her first rescue was P.J., the black and white Pomeranian in the story. She also adopted the orange Pomeranians Shelby and Lil Rascal, and of course, Chance, the big black Rottweiler/German Shepherd mix. All characters in the story are based on Sandra’s real life family. The book is filled with softly blended watercolor photos of her loved ones. Her most significant adoption was her son, Terry. He was considered a special needs child because he was born with a genetic disorder known as Fragile X Syndrome. The disorder can cause many cognitive disorders, such as autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, mental retardation and depression.

Second Chance is narrated by Chance a shelter dog who is adopted into a family with an autistic boy.  He keeps hearing the word adoption and wonders what it is.  Ryan is autistic and has trouble communicating with most people but is able to communicate with Chance.

This is a book I would recommend to the right audience: those who are adopted or autistic or have children that are. It’s a great book for helping to explain what adoption is to a child.  It didn’t delve into autism as much as it did adoption but still addressed the subject.

The biggest drawback of this book is the way it was formatted. Small print on dark colored pages made the text difficult to read. There were too many words on each page for it to be a read aloud yet it was a picture book making it a little young for older children who would be able to read it alone.

What I really liked was knowing this was based on a true story.  A visit to the authors website and seeing the pictures that the illustrations were based on made me appreciate the book more.

About the Author:
Sandra J. Gerencher is a special education teacher in the Bangor Area public school system. Prior to becoming a teacher, she worked at Lehigh University in a school-based program, as a Program Specialist for adults with disabilities. Over the past 20 years she has worked with children and adults with special needs in such areas as counseling, Behavior Specialist Consultation, behavioral research, crisis intervention and abuse therapy. Sandra graduated from Lehigh University with a M.Ed. in Special Education (2004) and from Chestnut Hill College in Philadelphia with an M.S. in Counseling Psychology (1999).

Rating 3.5 Stars

Source: Tribute Books Tour