Cover image for The bravest dog ever : the true story of Balto
The bravest dog ever : the true story of Balto
Standiford, Natalie.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Random House, [1989]

Physical Description:
47 pages : color illustrations ; 23 cm.
Recounts the life of Balto, the sled dog who saved Nome, Alaska in 1925 from a diphtheria epidemic by delivering medicine through a raging snowstorm.
Reading Level:
330 Lexile.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR LG 2.5 0.5 6255.

Reading Counts RC K-2 2.5 2 Quiz: 01537 Guided reading level: L.
Added Author:

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
READER Juvenile Fiction Readers
READER Juvenile Fiction Readers

On Order



It is one of the worst storms ever - the snow has not stopped for days and it is 30 degrees below zero. But somehow Balto must get through. He is the lead dog of his sled team. And he is carrying medicine to sick children miles away in Nome, Alaska. He is their only hope. Can Balto find his way through the terrible storm? Find out in this exciting true story!

Author Notes

Natalie Standiford was born and raised in Baltimore, Maryland, but now lives in New York City. She plays bass in the rock bands Tiger Beat (featuring fellow YA writers Libba Bray, Dan Ehrenhaft, and Barney Miller) and Ruffian. Find out more at her web site:

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Gr. 1-3. Standiford relates a true story about a dog named Balto, whose superb instincts guided a sled team carrying precious diphtheria medicine to Nome, Alaska. The story carries inherent drama and the rigors of the journey are vividly portrayed within the simple writing style. This should have broad appeal for those just beginning to handle brief sentences. --Denise Wilms

School Library Journal Review

Gr 1-3-- A compelling account, told in easy-to-read format, of Balto, a sled dog who led his team through snow and ice over 53 miles of northern Alaska wilderness to deliver some medicine. The story is based on an actual event that occurred in 1925 during an outbreak of diptheria, when the closest medicine was 800 miles away in Anchorage. When the train bearing the important cargo became buried in the snow still 700 miles from its destination, a dog sled relay was used. Cook's softly colored illustrations are expressive and enhance the drama of the story--a proud and heroic story that young readers are sure to enjoy. --Sharron McElmeel, Cedar Rapids Community Schools, IA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.