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NIGHT OF THE HOWLING DOGS by Graham Salisbury

NIGHT OF THE HOWLING DOGS

By Graham Salisbury

Age Range: 9 - 12

Pub Date: Aug. 14th, 2007
ISBN: 978-0-385-73122-5
Publisher: Wendy Lamb/Random

When Dylan’s Boy Scout troop—eight Scouts and two adult leaders—hikes on the Big Island of Hawaii, down into the beautiful land by the ancient lava flow and the ocean, they must face the grueling heat, wasps, roaches, sharks, wild dogs and rumors of ghosts. But when a catastrophic earthquake hits, followed by a wall of water churned up by a tsunami, mere survival becomes their only goal. This good, old-fashioned survival tale based on a true event of November 29, 1975, is leisurely paced for the first half of the novel. Characters and setting are expertly developed, as is the conflict between Dylan and Louie Domingo—two characters at odds who must work together during the crisis and appreciate each other’s strengths. When the quake hits, the pace of the prose matches the action with short, verb-driven sentences, lively dialogue and prolific exclamation points. Given the ordeal, the tale ends satisfactorily, with Dylan and Louie’s grudging acceptance of each other and Dylan’s new-found relationship with his father. Like any good survival story, this will make readers ponder what they would do when survival is on the line. A sure-fire literary thriller. (author’s note) (Fiction. 9-12)