Parent reviews for Where the Red Fern Grows

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Common Sense says

age 9+

Based on our expert review

Parents say

age 10+

Based on 21 reviews

Kids say

age 9+

Based on 81 reviews

age 9+

I want to have dogs-2 ... and I would name them Dan and Ann!!

This is a great book - so touching , so realistic so inspiring . Really loved it .

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models
age 10+

Cry and Scream and Laugh

This is the best book. I read with a class of 6th graders. One big theme is death. A boy dies in a freak accident. There is also a gruesome, detailed fight between a dog and mountain lion where the dog eventually dies. Then, the last death is another dog passing from grief. Billy is a great role model, especially for kids today. Billy has to work very hard to earn money and earn his dogs. Young people can read this but it can be tedious at times. Its great for 5th-6th graders. MANY of my students cry. It is powerful and emotional. Who knew so many people could feel attached to a little hillbilly boy and his dogs??

This title has:

Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
age 12+

Paints vivid images

There are many positive reviews but I think it only fair to mention a few other points. The boy leaves home unannounced for 3 days when he gets the dogs, yet doesn’t get into any serious trouble for doing so from his parents. Also he doesn’t seem to have any responsibilities around the farm. I think these paint an unrealistic image. The story would have better if he overcame these struggles, and that there are consequences to his actions. Be aware also that there is a strong religious undertone to the book. I did enjoy and would highly recommend it.

This title has:

Educational value
age 8+

Amazing shows lots of integrity

It had a lot of honesty, determination, and integrity. It was one of the best books I have ever read. It has a lot of great character traits that we can use in real life, because he keeps his promises, he is brave, he has integrity, he is determined, and a great model for younger kids, but not to young beacuse their is some violence in this book.

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models
age 10+

Loved it!!

I absolutely loved it! Billy had great characters traits, like trustworthiness,truthfulness,compassion,determination and so much more! It can’t get any better! Totally 5/5

This title has:

Educational value
Great role models
age 9+

Awesome! Shows a lot of great traits that you would want a regular kid to have!

This was the best book ever!!!!! I think kids would love it as well as adults do! What I love most about this book is the trait that are show in this book! For example: Compassion, Endurance, reliability, Bravery, Thankfulness, and so mush more! I think kids should use Billy to set an example for them, who knows maybe adults should too! My kids in my classroom adored this book and wanted to read it over and over again. This is a true classic!

This title has:

Great role models
age 9+

A wonderfully emotional adventure!

We loved this as a family. My kids were VERY emotional at the parts toward the end and decided to not finish. Without giving away the ending, my children have experienced this happening and I think that atleast for my 9 year old it hit close to home. We will read this again for sure!!

This title has:

Educational value
Great role models
age 12+

Extreme Tear-Jerker and Guaranteed to leave you in Tears

This book is extremely sad, and if you like happy ending with pets, don't even pick this up. This book is even sadder than Old Yeller.

This title has:

Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
age 8+

A Book That Makes You Smile, Cry, and Laugh!

If your child is above the age of 8 or 9 and they have not read this then something must be terribly wrong. When I read this when I was 12, it was probably the first book I cried over. This book is so amazingly depicted that not even today's authors can top this one. I love the story of Billy and his dogs. It so poetic, explorative, that I don't even know what else to say. Despite all the contrasts and critiques, this book is so well put together that I even had dreams that I was Billy and I could achieve anything I want to achieve. Even though this book is decades old, this book is never too old to remain as an uplifted and encouraged individual to be steadfast and to make sacrifices in life.

This title has:

Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
age 9+

I love this book!

I just finished reading this for my second time a couple of days ago, and I love it. Definitely a timeless classic that I would recommend to anyone, especially dog lovers!

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models