This novel is written from the perspective of George, a magical basset hound, and he does a very good job of telling the story. He is the familiar of a young twelve-year-old witch named Karly, and he takes his job of teaching and protecting her very seriously, most of the time. He needs to help solve a murder and save the park from being turned into condos.
George’s character is well-developed and consistent throughout the novel. In addition, Karly and her Aunt Heather are portrayed with good depth and believability. Point of view can be tricky in any novel, but in one where the main character is a dog, the task is much more complex. The author is more than up to the challenge as George never falters while he follows the scent and solves the mysteries.
I did find the constant use of “Peeps” for people tiring, as well as “Girlpup,” Boypup” “Packmom,” “Packdad,” and the like, but I honestly don’t know what dogs call humans, so I can hardly fault George’s language. The author has obviously studied basset hounds as George’s actions are consistent with his breed. And he is definitely loveable, even with his egotistical personality.
The pace of the novel starts out gently and then really speeds up as the action demands. George is able to do a lot of teaching, and Karly catches on quickly, although not as quickly as George wants. We don’t learn a lot about the developers, but then that is consistent with the point of view, as George really doesn’t care about them at all. He just wants to protect the park and solve the mystery of the bones he dug up.
It is very interesting to read a book told entirely from George’s perspective. It definitely limits the information that is disclosed, unless that information is about food. But George is a very clever dog and in the end he does manage to bring his “Peeps” together and solve the case. Lovers of animal stories are sure to enjoy following George as he saves the day.
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