A Boy’s Best Friend (1992), written by Joan Alden with photographs by Catherine Hopkins, was published by Alyson Wonderland, the children’s literature imprint of Alyson Publications, a LGBTQ press founded in 1980.
The story focuses on a young boy named Will who lives outside of Montreal with his mom and her “friend” Jeanne. Will has asthma which hinders his ability to participate in rough physical activities and make friends. All he wants is a dog, but asthma gets in the way of that too.
For his seventh birthday, his mom and Jeanne give him a stuffed toy dog that he treats like a real dog until older boys at school make fun of him. The toy sort-of comes to life adding a touch of whimsy to the book.
I found this book too wordy for its intended audience. The realistic photographs also date it while offering those of us reading it in 2019 opportunities for chuckles.
It’s a good book to have if you are building an archive of LGBTQ kid’s literature and it is fairly easy and affordable to purchase used, but I can’t imagine many young readers finding the story engaging.