Can a dog rule the world?
Dogs have found religion, as we always knew they would. They believe in the Great Wolf, who protects all dogs, and in the Black Dog, who is a force for destruction. Shep believes most fervently of all. Shep rescued his friends from a flood in volume one of the series (The Storm, 2012), but he never thought he’d become the subject of a religious parable. But dogs have started telling stories about the Storm Shaker who was touched with moonstuff. Shep doesn’t feel like a prophet. But if he becomes a legend, will the other dogs trust him to lead them through the flooded streets to safety? This is a more ambitious, thoughtful book than the first, with fewer chase scenes. In fact, Shep spends most of the novel trying to develop a philosophy of leadership. Not every reader will want to follow along as Shep tries out theocracy, democracy and dictatorship. And the canine language Lorentz has developed, which worked so well in the series opener, is more labored here, with sentences like: “That’s a well-furred idea if I’ve ever smelled one.” But action fans will love the climax, in which Shep fights an actual black dog.
Adventure lovers will enjoy the cliffhanger ending, and political junkies will wonder if dogs are more advanced than we are. (Animal fantasy. 8-12)