Togo to the Rescue

How a Heroic Husky Saved the Lives of Children in Alaska

Coming Soon


By Mélisande Potter

Illustrated by Giselle Potter

Formats and Prices




$24.99 CAD




Hardcover $18.99 $24.99 CAD

A Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selection

You may know Balto—now explore the true story of Togo, the heroic Siberian Husky who traveled through a terrifying blizzard to help deliver life-saving medicine to children in need.

In January 1925, the community of Nome, Alaska, was overcome by an outbreak of diphtheria, a deadly disease that affected mostly children. If that weren’t enough, a blinding snowstorm prevented all travel to and from the rural town. Who would deliver the serum cure? Nome’s only hope rested on sled dogs. An expedition was quickly organized: The dogs would travel in teams in a relay covering 674 miles to deliver the serum. One of those teams, led by musher Leonhard Seppala, had Togo at the helm. It was Togo leading the pack that traveled the longest and most dangerous part of the expedition.

This incredible true story celebrates courage and determination in the face of unimaginable circumstances, and cements Togo’s legacy in history as a legendary dog hero. Includes rich back matter on this time period in American history featuring information on Alaska, the Diphtheria outbreak, anti-serum toxin, and dog sledding as a means of transportation in times of need.

  • Praise for Togo to the Rescue:
    A Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selection

    Praise for Cher Ami:
    An NCSS-CBC Notable Social Studies Selection
    An MASL Dogwood Readers Award Winner

    "Young readers will cheer for Cher Ami, who, delightfully, was fitted with a tiny wooden leg and received the Croix de Guerre." —The Wall Street Journal

    "Mélisande Potter’s text is concise, dramatic, and compelling, entirely matched by Giselle Potter’s art—evocative watercolors that convey setting beautifully while always keeping the valiant pigeon center stage." —The Horn Book

    "Lovingly crafted…. The author creates a real sense of drama when Cher Ami performs her famous flight—an act made all the more suspenseful by the dynamic illustrations. An uplifting piece of history that children will love." —Booklist

    "A fresh tribute to the renowned avian wounded warrior…. A tale worth the telling." —Kirkus Reviews

    "First-time mother-daughter collaborators Mélisande and Giselle Potter recount the true story of a homing pigeon named Cher Ami in this WWI-focused picture book…. Presented in watercolor and ink with mottled brown wings and a luminescent throat, Cher Ami makes for a handsomely anthropomorphized heroine; her ordeal, as sympathetically captured by the creators, provides a bird’s-eye view of war’s realities." —Publishers Weekly

    "Engaging watercolor and ink artwork that portrays Cher Ami at her valorous best will rivet the picture book audience, making this a useful Veterans Day centerpiece, when strict veracity might briefly take a backseat to a rousing war story." —The Bulletin

    "Cher Ami is a war hero who also happens to be a pigeon. With thoughtful illustrations and sensitive text, this work offers younger students a glimpse of what life was like for soldiers in World War I and the dangers they faced in the trenches. For animal lovers or budding historians, this book is sure to be a hit with young readers." —School Library Journal

    "Descriptive and precise…. There are few books for younger readers about this period in history, and by making the main character an animal, and deemphasizing the horrors of war, this book manages to make the subject palatable for this age range."
    School Library Connection

On Sale
Oct 15, 2024
Page Count
40 pages

Mélisande Potter

About the Author

Mélisande and Giselle Potter are a mother-daughter team who have created numerous books individually, but Cher Ami: Based on the World War I Legend of the Fearless Pigeon—a CBC-NCSS Notable Social Studies Selection—marked their first collaboration. Mélisande is the illustrator of Pizza for the Queen by Nancy Castaldo. Giselle is the award-winning illustrator of over thirty books for children, including The Boy Who Loved Words, The Honest-to-Goodness Truth, and The Big Box by Toni Morrison. She also illustrated a column for the New York Times called Ties. Giselle invites you to visit her at

Learn more about this author