Cover image for I, Jack
I, Jack
Finney, Patricia, 1958-
Personal Author:
First U.S. edition.
Publication Information:
New York : HarperCollins, 2004.

Physical Description:
178 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm
Jack, a Labrador Retriever, tells about his daily life of food, walks, and the "apedogs" and "funny-looking dogs" (cats) in his pack, as well as how everything changes when a pretty girl dog moves into the neighborhood. Includes explanatory footnotes written by the cats.
General Note:
Reprint. Originally published: London : Corgi Yearling Books, 2000.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR MG 2.9 3.0 76353.
Added Author:

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
J FICTION Juvenile Fiction Open Shelf
J FICTION Juvenile Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



Hi! Hi there!I am Jack! Big dog Jack. WAG TAIL. I live with a big Pack. This is my Packleader. I love him HUGE amounts! More than steak, even. YUMYUM. My Packleader has a Pack Lady and three children. I love them BIG amounts, too. And this is Petra; she lives next door. Isn't she Gorgeous? This is my story. It's SO EXCITING! Find out how I become friends with Petra, brave the FIERCE garage dog, and save Packleader from Huge Scary Metal Monsters. ARROOOF ARROOOF!

Author Notes

Jack was born near Plymouth, England, the only puppy in his litter. He was adopted (at great expense) by his Pack. Jack went to obedience school, but he was not at all obedient, and far too friendly. His interests include eating, walking, food, swimming, breakfast, playing NotFetch, dinner, and, of course, food theft
Patricia Finney is Jack's real Pack Lady and his interpreter. She spends a lot of time running around after Jack, The Cats, and her three children. When she can, she writes all kinds of things, including historical novels, scripts, and articles for newspapers. She won the David Higham Award for her first novel, A Shadow of Gulls. Ms. Finney lives in Cornwall, England

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Gr. 3-6. Meet Jack. Hi, hi. Pant, pant. Wag, wag. May I smell . . . . Oh, sorry. Jack is a yellow Labrador retriever. He tells us apedogs (excuse me, that's what he calls humans) his story in his own words. Well, the three cats sharing his den (house) help by adding acid commentary in footnotes. A good thing, too, since Jack is very thick and sometimes gets things wrong. But he is sweet. Very, very sweet. He loves Petra, the girl dog next door. They have puppies, and things get complicated. Jack and Petra run away. Jack's pack leader (owner) tries to find them. He has an accident, and Jack gets to be a hero. Oh, wow. Happy dog. Happy readers. Good, funny book. Show British author Finney much respect. Tummy rubs all around. --Michael Cart Copyright 2003 Booklist

Publisher's Weekly Review

The cover photo of a yellow Lab (wearing drawn-on eyeglasses) and the author credit "By Jack, the dog, as told to Patricia Finney," tip readers off to the narrative voice in this labored British import. Jack's rather cloying exuberance is evident from his opening words: "Hi! hi there! Hello! hi, friend!! I am Jack! Look at me! Here I am. I like you. Do you like me? I am Jack. Big Dog Jack!! Hi! Can I smell your...? Oh. Sorry." He then introduces his "Pack," the English family he lives with, consisting of Packleader (the "biggest standing-up apedog"), his wife, Pack Lady, and three "apedog puppies." Some readers will be more tolerant than others of the cutesy "Jackspeak," some of which is translated in a concluding glossary ("talkbone" is the telephone, "Flying Featheries" are birds). Though Jack's interpretations of family matters occasionally hit a humorous note, his monologue can be tedious and repetitious, as he fixates on Petra, the pooch next door, yips about feeling hungry and garners criticism or praise from his owners. Only midway through is there any appreciable action, as Jack helps Petra find a place to deliver her "Special Message" (puppies); at the tail end, he struggles to obey instructions to "make like Lassie" and fetch help when his Packleader falls through rotting stairs and breaks his leg. Footnotes relaying quips from the supercilious family felines add little to this sluggish canine caper. Ages 8-12. (Feb.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

School Library Journal Review

Gr 4-6-Jack, a big yellow dog, has fallen head over paws in love with pretty Petra; when her owner finds out, she comments, "But Jack is just a Labrador and Petra is a Samoyed." Then the plot takes a different path with Petra soon becoming pregnant. A subplot involves the environmental conservation of the forest area surrounding the mill where Petra has her puppies as a new highway is soon to be built over it. Jack's overemphasized stupidity in some scenes is inconsistent with his apparent intelligence in others. On the other hand, in scenes in which his real emotions come through, his character rings true. Some readers might find the scene in which Jack chases and kills a cottontail, licks its blood off his teeth, and says, "Yum," and later "licks the inside of the bunny's skin" a bit over the top. In addition, several of the dog-language words he uses are unclear; having to refer often to the glossary slows the story. However, Finney does a good job of weaving realistically believable canine behavior and slapstick humor throughout. Jack's sincere attempts to make sense of what people are telling him are particularly funny, and the ending is upbeat. Small black-and-white drawings break up the text on many of the pages.-James K. Irwin, Nichols Library, Naperville, IL (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



I, Jack Chapter One My Pack and Our Den Hi! hi there! Hello! hi, friend!! I am Jack! Look at me! Here I am. I like you. Do you like me? I am jack. big dog jack!! Hi! Can I smell your . . . ? Oh. Sorry. I am Jack, old-fashioned yellow Labrador. I am very Thick. I am very very Thick. It's good to be Thick. wag tail. Pant. Get patted. Thick means Good. I have a big Pack, very big Pack, all different kinds of dogs. One kind of dog -- standing-up-on-back-legs-smell-of-ape-type dog with no fur, no tail. Some big, some little. Apedogs. Other kind of dog -- normal-walking-type dog with fur, hidden claws. And me. Here is my Pack. Front paw. Biggest standing-up apedog is Master and Packleader. He is very very Big (bigger than you). He has a big deep bark. He has a big belly, lots of dark fur on face (not much on head). He makes things with his clever paws in his little wooden den: sometimes he makes lines on paper with burnt sticks, or he puts lots of different-smelling slime on paper with another kind of stick with a furry top, or he makes huge things out of wet earth. I get much whacking when I eat paper-with-smears even though the smell is so interesting. But whatever he does is Good because he is my Packleader and also Tom Stopes, also Dad. He is the biggest apedog. I love him huge amounts. More than steak, even. Other front paw. Next biggest apedog is Pack Lady of my Pack, also Charlie-short-for-Charlotte, also Mom, also Darling. She is not as big as the Packleader (in fact she is quite little) but she barks higher and even more. She has no fur on face, lots of dark fur on head.She is scary fierce if she finds you with head-in-trashcan. I love her big amounts. More than pork chops. Back paw. Apedog puppy girl. She is nearly big now. She is Teresa, or Terri. She has no fur on face, fur on head, cuddles me. She has a box with loud howling and banging inside. She sits next to it and howls. Why does she get mad when I help with howling? I do not understand. I love her a lot. More than kidneys. Other back paw. Immature male apedog puppy. Smaller than Terri. No fur on face, short fur on head, runs around barking lots. Sits on two-wheel-go-fast-thing -- watch out jack, you stupid dog! He is good to cuddle. He helps me dig for bones. Often he gives me Sugar Puffs and bits of toast and pea-nut butter -- funny, sticky, but nice taste. He is called Pete. I love him a huge lot. More than cow-liver, even. Tail. Other male apedog puppy. Small. Very small. Was smaller. First he was a roly-poly no-fur puppy, getting milk from Pack Lady -- no, not for you, jack. Why not? Anyway, now he is standing-up-type apedog, but short. He is friendly. When I kiss him, he licks my face. He is called Mikey and also Baba. I love him lots. More than chicken. There are also normal-walking-with-fur-and-tail-type dogs but small and hidden-claws. yowp! They don't like me smelling their tails. We have lots. Stripey one, Remy. Black-and-white one, Maisie. White-and-black one, Muskie. I love them a bit. Funny-looking dogs. There are also lots of Small Furries outside. Also Slimies in pond -- jump jump yowp! Also Flying Featheries that the Cats make into meat and leave on kitchen floor and Pack Lady stands on in the morning and runs around barking and howling lots and throwing the Cats through the back door. I do not understand why the Cats make Flying Featheries and Small Furries into meat, but they say they like it and I am too Thick to live and what do I think I eat anyway? Yes. I am Thick. I am very Thick. I am the Thickest Dog in the World. Now I will tell you about my Pack's den. It is good but Pack Lady says it's too small. Great Packleader and Pack Lady share a room, nice nest, why can't I come in it? too small, you great dummy, says Pack Lady. Now the food room where my food dish is. My Food Dish is very beautiful. It is shiny and smooth and smells of metal. It has food in it two times each day, one after sleep, one be-fore sleep. i love my food dish very much. I can hold it in my mouth and carry it. Sometimes I drop it on Packleader's foot when he might forget about food for the dog. He barks lots. Sometimes I drop it on the Food Room floor, bang kerlang crash! Good noise. Sometimes I get mixed up and fetch my water dish . . . Boing! Splosh! . . . I wonder how that puddle happened? Oh. Sorry. There is also the Sitting Room with the talking Flicker Box and a little room with another talking Flicker Box and a big wood-and-metal pling-plong noise-thing. The Cats walk on it sometimes, to make beautiful music (they say). Sitting Room is nice. The Cats have their god in there. It is yellow and red and hot and makes a burning hot smell. I like it. The Cats like it more. Why do they scowl at me when I lie next to it? They could lie on top of me, and we would all be warm and comfy. Why should the Cats lie near the god and not me? I do not understand. There is also Outside and Outside Outside. Outside has lots of trees and flowers and green things. I can do my messages there. Outside Outside is for Walkies. i love walkies. can we go now? now! please? walkies now please? Oh. Sorry. I, Jack . Copyright © by Patricia Finney. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold. Excerpted from I, Jack by Patricia Finney All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

Table of Contents

1 My Pack and Our Denp. 1
2 Girl Dog!p. 9
3 Sad Dogp. 17
4 Breakfast Time!p. 20
5 Sugar Puffs!p. 25
6 Erro Packleader!!p. 31
7 Joy Oh Joy-Walkies!!!p. 36
8 Oh Dear. Water-Runningp. 48
9 Sad Dog. Happy Dog!p. 54
10 Huge Great Food Placep. 60
11 Chicken, Pizza, Mature Stew!p. 70
12 Special Messages?p. 79
13 No Supper! Arrooo!p. 84
14 Big Pig-Leg. Yum!p. 90
15 Nyaaah! Nyaaah!p. 99
16 Yum! Yum! Giblets!p. 106
17 Pig's Ear!p. 113
18 Rabbit! Rabbit!p. 124
19 Yowch!p. 133
20 Kaboom! Yip! Yip!p. 145
21 Bad Whitecoat Apedogp. 151
22 Cuddle Packleaderp. 158
23 Big Huge Metal Monsters!p. 168
24 I Get Steak!p. 176
Jackspeak: Englishp. 182