Stray by Stacey Goldblatt

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When 16-year-old Natalie Kaplan meets a new person, she knows right away what kind of dog they'd be. Natalie herself resembles an Ibizan hound—quiet, playful, loyal, smart, and above all, obedient. Actually, Natalie has been trained so well that sometimes she thinks her mother is secretly controlling her with a dog whistle. (Her mom is a respected veterinarian with a successful clinic, so it's not that much of a stretch.)

Just like the Ibizan, Natalie is very mindful of her master's rules, but at the first sign of freedom, she is prone to stray. And who can blame her when the gorgeous and mysterious Carver Reed comes to live with the Kaplan family for the summer? Little by little, Natalie is drawn to Carver's spontaneity and free spirit, and before long, she turns into another breed of girl, who surprisingly bites the hand that feeds her.

"Stray is a winning novel that provides us with an important reminder: it's okay to make mistakes and break the rules, especially when it comes to love."—Maureen Johnson, author of 13 Little Blue Envelopes

From the Hardcover edition.

About Stacey Goldblatt

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When Stacey Goldblatt was in high school, she spent every Saturday at a family friend's veterinarian clinic. Currently, she boards in San Diego with her husband, two children, and two cats. You can visit her at
Published July 1, 2009 by Laurel Leaf. 290 pages
Genres: Romance, Young Adult, Nature & Wildlife, Children's Books, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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However, as Natalie slowly begins asserting herself, the constant dog references fade, and the characters, especially Natalie and Carver, take center stage and become fully developed.

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To get away from her mom she spends most of her time with her dogs at home and at her job at her moms veterinary clinic.

Jul 29 2007 | Read Full Review of Stray

Curled Up With a Good Kid's Book

He’s postponing college at Purdue for a semester, and Natalie’s mom told Faith he could work there to get veterinarian experience before he accompanies Faith “on her Physicians for Humanitarianism mission to Africa this fall.” Though Natalie’s mom gives them both, separately, speeches about “...

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