DOGLANDS by Tim Willocks

DOGLANDS

Age Range: 11 & up

KIRKUS REVIEW

After his brutal owner tries to kill him, a half-breed greyhound escapes and embarks on a series of adventures.

Furgul learns from his mother, a racing greyhound, that he’s the son of Argal, a legendary wild dog who knows of Doglands, the mythical place where dogs roam free. When a brave escape ends badly for his litter mates, Furgul is adopted by a caring but controlling couple then flees just before he’s to be neutered. He is imprisoned in a kill-after-five-days pound, then befriended by a human who can speak “dog” fluently. Finally, assisted by a brave old St. Bernard, a cowardly mutt named Skyver, the love of his life, Dervla, and a few others, he takes on a dangerous mission to rescue his mother and all the other greyhounds imprisoned by the abusive Dedbone and his sidekick, the Gambler. When violence erupts, it’s graphically depicted: “a separate pack of hounds, driven crazy by the blood,… devoured him alive where he lay.” The dogs each have distinct personalities, and the mystic lore of the Doglands adds a secondary fantasy layer to the narrative. Humans are only sketched in, which is fitting, since the tale is told from the dog point of view.

A riveting dog tale with a healthy serving of savagery, not all on the part of the four-legged characters. (Fantasy. 11 & up)

Pub Date: Sept. 27th, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-375-86571-8
Page count: 320pp
Publisher: Random House
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1st, 2011




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