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    James Patterson money brings Norbert to first-graders

    Julie Freyermuth (right) and her mother, Virginia, with their dog Norbert, on whom they based their children’s book.
    Suzanne Kreiter/Globe staff
    Julie Freyermuth (right) and her mother, Virginia, with their dog Norbert, on whom they based their children’s book.

    As you may have heard, there were a bunch of local retailers that received grants from best-selling writer James Patterson, who has pledged to give
    $1 million to indie bookstores to help them improve business. Porter Square Books was one of them, and the store has already started using its Patterson cash. On Tuesday morning, the store brought Carver-based mother and daughter Julie and Virginia Freyermuth, author and illustrator of “Norbert: What Can Little Me Do?,” to meet with first-graders at the Argenziano School in Somerville and at the Tobin School in Cambridge. All kids got a copy of the book and were able to meet the inspiration for the work, Norbert the dog. Porter Square has another Patterson-paid event in store on April 17 featuring the Freyermuths. That one is open to the public.

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    Mark Shanahan can be reached at shanahan@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @MarkAShanahan. Meredith Goldstein can be reached at mgoldstein@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @MeredithGoldste.