{Series Review} Rosco the Rascal Books 1-5 by Shana Gorian

“It was a nostalgic treat to revisit Rosco in this Audible Collection narrated by Trista Shaye.”

Review by Rayleigh Setser

Meet 10-year-old James, seven-year-old Mandy, and their mischievous German shepherd, Rosco, in this five-book audiobook set. Year-round adventures await, with a fall trip to a pumpkin patch, a winter vacation to the mountains, a springtime march through a St. Patrick’s Day Parade, a summertime week at sleep-away camp, and a hometown Christmas lights contest.

“…A fine choice for newly independent and reluctant readers, featuring good-natured characters, a well-intentioned mutt, and an outdoor rescue mission.” (Kirkus Reviews, on Rosco the Rascal in the Land of Snow)

Fans of the Magic Tree House series will love this brother and sister pair, and fans of classic, heroic dogs – from Lassie to Beethoven – will love Rosco.

This five-book collection includes:
Rosco the Rascal Visits the Pumpkin Patch
Rosco the Rascal in the Land of Snow
Rosco the Rascal Goes to Camp
Rosco the Rascal at the St. Patrick’s Day Parade
Rosco the Rascal and the Holiday Lights

Release Date: 2022

Genre: Children’s | Adventure

Audio: 9 hours and 3 mins

I received a promotional Audible credit to listen to this collection of audiobooks. All comments and opinions are entirely my own and this review is voluntary.

I stumbled across Rosco the Rascal Visits the Pumpkin Patch (the first book in this series) back in 2016 and loved it so much that I featured it on Literature Approved. It was one of Literature Approved's first reviews, so it was a nostalgic treat to revisit Rosco in this Audible Collection narrated by Trista Shaye.

James, Mandy, and Rosco are an adventurous trio never living a dull moment! As I mention in my previous review of Rosco the Rascal Visits the Pumpkin Patch, 

"Rosco the Rascal is a charming character that reminded me a bit of the beloved Hank the Cowdog, but for a slightly younger audience.

The story is adventurous, exhilarating, and well written for the intended audience of about 6 to 10 years old. The characters will be loved by the readers and kids, both boys and girls, will adore Rosco as he and his human family visit the pumpkin patch."

The previous quote can apply to all of the Rosco the Rascal books, however, to breakdown my thoughts on each book: 

Rosco the Rascal in the Land of Snow 
This is a great early-reader chapter book series and the illustrations are super cute!

It's an adventurous story of two siblings and their fun-loving German Shepherd, Rosco, intended for readers 6-10 years old. In this book, James, Mandy, and Rosco go on vacation to the mountains and learn about forest safety and wild animals.

I really like how the book highlights wholesome family values (mom & dad are both present in their life) and the kids aren't constantly fighting. They have their disagreements, but they are quick to apologize and go back to playing.

Rosco the Rascal Goes to Camp
This one is my favorite of the collection!

I loved Rosco's adventures at camp and how this book contained very defined plot points compared to the previous books. It was exciting to read and there were lessons for being friendly to kids who may be hard to be friends with (not necessarily a "bully", but generally unkind and acting out for attention).

Rosco the Rascal and the St. Patrick's Day Parade
This book had a more "fantastical" feel to it than the others, with a fun leprechaun side-plot.

I liked the display of teamwork and how James sacrificed his "fame" in the parade to help Mandy search for the dog that got away. Their adventure was cute and exciting, and as I mentioned earlier, the splash of fantasy with the leprechauns made this book fun.

Rosco the Rascal and the Holiday Lights
Unfortunately, this book was my least favorite, and I elected to give this singular book 3 stars.

With it being Christmastime, I'm actually surprised that I didn't like it as much as the others. But, the overall vibes of the book are just so much more negative than the others. James deals with jealousy and being controlling, while Mandy struggles with wanting to do things on her own and it blowing up in her face. These are valid struggles to illustrate to kids, and I liked how it ended, but I just didn't enjoy the story because it was chapter after chapter of the kids being tooty. I had really hoped for a cozy and cute Christmas story, but it wasn't as fun as the other books because of the negativity. Also, I feel like Rosco took the back burner in this one, which is a shame because he's the title of the book.

Overall, if you need some more books for your youngsters, both boys and girls can enjoy Rosco the Rascal. The narrator of this audible collection, Trista Shaye, did a great job of being upbeat in her reading and I certainly recommend purchasing this collection of 5 books!

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Content Ratings:

Action & Gore:

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Romance & Spice:

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Cursing & Vulgarity:

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