I Found a Kitty! by Troy Cummings; illustrated by Troy Cummings. 2020. Published by Random House Books for Young Readers.
Brief summary: Arfy is having a great time playing and sniffing outside when he comes across a homeless kitten in a drainpipe. He writes several letters to those in the neighbor he believes will be able to give Scamper a good home. Each time, they write back to Arfy after Scamper has been there for a small time but without success. Finally, Arfy finds Scamper the perfect home.
Comments: This would be a book to read when introducing letter writing for young readers.
Suggestions are in the back for ways readers can help a homeless pet.
Windows by Julia Denos; illustrated by E.B. Goodale. 2017. Ink, watercolor, letterpress, and digital collage. Published by Candlewick Press.
Brief summary: A boy takes his dog for a walk at dusk watching all of his neighbors through their windows. Each window gives a glimpse into a person’s life at that moment. When he arrives back to his house, he sees his mom standing in their picture window waving at him.
Comments: I believe most young readers will be able to relate to this story of how the boy learns about his different neighbors just by looking in their windows as he walks his dog. We surmise that he walks the dog each night at the same time and gets to see their stories unfold over weeks, months, and years.
I drive through my neighborhood to work just as a few people are getting up and have learned some of their stories. I am always surprised how no one closes the blinds in the city. I think when I read this to my students, it will be remembered and have more meaning when they walk at dusk or dawn through their neighborhoods looking at the lit windows.
Harry and Walter by Kathy Stinson; illustrated by Qin Leng. 2016.
Brief summary: Harry, who is 4 3/4 ths old is best friends with his neighbor, Walter, who is 92 1/2. They spend their days playing together until Harry has to move. Happily though, after a short time, they are reunited.
Comments: Sweet story about friendship with no age limitations. I would use this book when talking about friendships and the elderly.