Another very sweet and informative WWII dog story from Rix. The blurb is right in comparing her tales to Dick King-Smith and Michael Morpurgo, there are similarities in style and tone, and general animal plots.
It's not a sequel to The Great Escape, but a main (animal) protagonist from that book does pop up and a main character of the story is Michael, a child in the London blitz whose family seek out wounded and displaced animals. I liked this touch - it connects the stories in time without the absolute need to read all the books.
This story takes place when the War is underway, and dogs are starting to be used to search through the bomb sites for survivors. At the first bomb, heavily pregnant Misty runs scared from her home and ends up injured in the Underground, where her two puppies are born. As with the Great Escape the book follows a formula of including an individual badly affected by the first War (this time by shell shock and guilt), as well as chapters that follow the creation of dog training school for rescue dogs.
The main plot follows Misty's two puppies, who face all sorts of dangers and trials as they grow up under the ground. While none of the turns in the plot are unexpected, it's a tense tale for a 9-year-old, and with insight into the dogs' points-of-view, the family as they search for Misty so close by and a PTSD sufferer as he tries to overcome his demons.
There is so much for a parent or teacher to talk about with a listener, in terms of history content and the dogs' story.
It's also quite moving in places and I think I may have preferred it to The Great Escape.
I liked the book, very good storyline - tension and interest was held throughout. The writing style could perhaps have been improved a little, but one sees that even among the most seasoned writers. I too would recommend this book for the school library - even though fictional, the story explains well what life was like during the War Years.
I totally love this book; it is sublime in every way, and extremely action-packed. It is set the the Blitz, which is in World War II and I have been learning about the war at school! What a coincidence I picked up this book.
The story starts when Misty, a pregnant dog who lives with Amy and Jack, her brother, gets up from her basket. Soon, Misty had to stay out of a door in a separate room while the Dolan family were in a special room that Misty wasn't allowed in. Unexpectedly, a buzzing sound like an insect drone sounds outside the door, which Misty first detects. Amy soon hears it too and asks what it is. Jack warns that they are the German planes and the family flies into a panic as they dash out to the Anderson Shelter in the garden as the bombs detonate. In a fright, Misty dashes away from the house after hearing the loud noise. Misty was separated from the rest of the family.
Well, no more spoilers, read this book and find out what happens next. Beyond a shadow of a doubt, it is one of th best book I have ever read! However, it is bittersweet too. I recommend this book to people who likes animals. This book is rated for age 9+.
Even though this book is aimed at pre-teen readers, it will appeal to all ages. The main themes are dogs and World War II, so be prepared for a moving, tense story, and one that's a little sad in places. It's not all sad though, the story has some heartwarming and feel-good parts. It's a great book for the school library, particularly because there is some interesting details about WWII, and how animals were involved in the war effort. The Afterwards clearly states that The Victory Dogs is a work of fiction and not fact, but I think Megan Rix has created a realistic atmosphere within the pages of the book. Authors Michael Morpurgo and Sam Angus have also written good war stories, involving animals.
A superb dog story for children. I was reading this book with a child at work but had to buy my own copy to find out what happened quicker. This is also a very good history lesson for children about the Second World War as it is so real. I was asked loads of questions regarding what was happening in the story as we went along. I love dog stories but this one, beware, is bitter sweet. My friend wants to read it next then I will pass it on to our step-grandson in the holidays.
My daughter and I read this together (A few pages each) before bed. She is just building her confidence as a solid reader and this book was a great way to do it. We love the story, the only down side was she was getting later to bed every night as we 'had to' find out what happened to each character. My daughter is currently studying World War II at school, so it ties in nicely. This is the 3rd Megan Rix book we have read together. We are now on the 4th!
This book truly tugged at my heart strings. It shows how animals and humans alike can and have come together to improve war effort and without the assistance of NARPAC and all of the voluntary services, not as many people will have survived.
My granddaughter loved it, especially as the cover said 'if you like Michael Morpurgo you will like this'. She wrote enthusiastically about it at school and her teacher asked to borrow it for details of other books and the author.