Book Reviews

Review: Junkyard Dogs by Katherine Higgs-Coulthard

Junkyard Dogs is an emotional story about family. It’s a story about the weight of responsibilities and expectations. Your heart breaks, but Josh’s story is about perseverance and love. Keep reading this book review for my full thoughts.


Josh’s father has gone missing without a trace. Now Josh and his 9-year-old brother, Twig, are stuck living with Gran in her trailer. Problem is, Gran didn’t ask to take care of any kids, and she’s threatening to call social services unless Josh can find his dad. After paying off Gran to take in his little brother, Josh risks truancy and getting kicked off his basketball team to take to the streets and hunt for his dad. But when Josh digs too deep, he suddenly finds himself tethered to a criminal scrapping ring that his father was accomplice to. If Josh wants to keep Twig out of the system and return to some sense of normal, he’ll have to track his dad down and demand honest answers.


(Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)

Junkyard Dogs is a book that I had to take a few breaks from during reading. It’s emotionally heavy about growing up too soon and the pressures of early responsibility. While this is definitely an experience that isn’t unique to Josh, it’s certainly a book I had to be in the right space for at the time. Kids who have to carry too much weight too soon. How quickly our priorities change when they are forced to. If you are in the right space for this one and enjoy contemporary reads with determined characters, Junkyard Dogs is for you.

How our situations can make us feel this complex relationship of love and resentment. Of loving our siblings, but also resenting the ways they tie us down. Force us to think always about the burdens we bear. To figure out who will support us, show up for us, and who won’t. All the lies we are told with bad and good intentions. To see those who are trying their best, but how it’s sometimes not enough. Junkyard Dogs looks straight in the eyes of humanity, our limits and our possibilities.

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Junkyard Dogs is a book that I think revolves around characters. Rough around the edges. While I had to put this one down sometimes, it’s certainly worth the effort I think. Find Junkyard Dogs on Goodreads, Storygraph, Amazon,, & Blackwells.


What is the last emotional book you read?

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