Professor’s book earns Parents’ Choice Award

June 27, 2008

Professor Mona Kerby’s recently released children’s book, “Owney, the Mail Pouch Pooch,” has earned a prestigious silver Parents’ Choice Award for 2008.

“Children will love this fascinating fictionalized account of Owney, a stray mongrel terrier, who, in 1888, was adopted by the postmen of Albany, New York, and who later went on to fame (if not fortune) riding mail trains around the United States and collecting postal tags from every stop along the way,” wrote the Parents’ Choice reviewer in making the award.

The book for children ages 5 to 8 tells the stray mutt’s story from the morning in 1888 when postal workers found him asleep on the mail bags to his six-month global journey with the mail on the steamship Victoria. During his nine-year train odyssey, Owney criss-crossed the U.S. never wavering from his self-appointed mission of guarding the mail.

A photograph of the real Owney, a note about Owney’s likenesses at the Smithsonian and a list of newspaper accounts from the late 1800s are also included in Kerby’s book, which is illustrated by Lynne Barasch.

According to the non-profit’s website, “The Parents' Choice Awards program honors the best material for children: books, toys, music and storytelling, magazines, software, videogames, television and websites. Parents' Choice Foundation's panels of educators, scientists, performing artists, librarians, parents and, yes, kids themselves, identify the very best products for children of different ages and backgrounds, and of varied skill and interest levels.”