Fenway, a young, exuberant Jack Russell terrier, is having lots of trouble getting his “short human,” Hattie, to behave.
The family’s move from the city to the suburbs just complicates matters. First, there is the issue of the very slippery kitchen floor. After losing his footing the first time, Fenway refuses to venture out there again, even if it is the Eating Place. The backyard, which he perceives as an unpopulated Dog Park, is another issue, since nasty squirrels scamper through and Hattie climbs into a treehouse—squirrel house?—that he can’t reach. The two neighbors next door, a couple of jaded dogs, don’t improve things. Hattie is reluctantly learning to throw and catch a white ball in a big, fat glove and for some reason doesn’t welcome his enthusiastic help. And finally, there is the issue of the big group of dogs Hattie keeps taking him to visit, with whom he must learn to sit in order to receive treats. Fenway’s first-person point of view is appropriately frisky, even slightly berserk at times. But the jokes are used and then reused and begin to turn from funny into tedious repetition. More books in the series are promised; here’s hoping some new doggy dilemmas will emerge.
Young dog lovers will enjoy Fenway’s point of view, even if his eagerness wears a bit thin. (Fiction. 8-10)