What’s That in Dog Years?

Publisher: Oxford University Press

Review

George’s best friend Matt doesn’t want to play superheroes anymore and is hanging out with the class bullies. When he pranks George and falsely tells him an upcoming party is fancy dress, it’s game over for the friendship. 

George’s only friend now is his old dog Gizmo who comforts him through the "freak outs", that are frequent since his dad left. Gizmo is very poorly though, so George writes an adventure-filled bucket list for him.

At a fancy dog training session that George snuck into (and Gizmo was too unruly for), they befriend Lib. Lib gives George a boost and Gizmo the time of his life. Gizmo is trained up for a dog show, given a photoshoot and pampering session and they even end up stowing in a robber’s van!

This story is about leaving childhood and entering a world where, as George says, 'things are not simple anymore'. Children will love the first-person narration from George and the quirky touch of Gizmo’s doggie memoirs, peppered throughout.

This adorable tale of friendship is bittersweet. It features George struggling to accept his dad’s new girlfriend, Lib’s trials as a young carer, and Gizmo’s passing. It’s not all doom and gloom though as there is a lot of fun, excitement and laugh-out-loud moments.

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