Apr 28, 2009


by James Herbert

I always enjoy stories written from an animal's point of view. Fluke starts out with the birth of a puppy, and follows him through the ups and downs of life as a stray in the city. But this isn't any ordinary dog- there's something different about him. He is more aware, intelligent, understanding of human habits- and has fleeting memories of a different life. Eventually the dog meets a few other animals who also have this higher awareness, starts to puzzle out what's going on, and sets off on a journey to find some answers. At first I thought this book was rather like an old favorite from my childhood, Scruffy by Jack Stoneley, until the dog's human memories came up. Then it made me think of Diana Wynne Jones' Dogsbody- so I was expecting something a bit supernatural- but it actually ended up having a religious theme: reincarnation. Most of the book flows at a well-measured pace, describing the dog's life, but at the end things start to happen more quickly, with a murder mystery to be solved and a little twist in the ending. A very fun and interesting light read, great for on the beach (when you have to keep half an eye on the kid near the water)!

Rating: 3/5                      191 pages, 1977


  1. This sounds familiar. Did they make a movie of it?

  2. Yes. I didn't know until I was looking for cover images and found ones of the movie.

  3. I was just going to say that it reminds me of Dogsbody - wow, I haven't read THAT in ages. I don't think I even own a copy. And, of course, whenever I think about stories told from the animal's point of view, I think about Homeward Bound and get teary. A few years ago, my little sister and I tried to train our parents' dog to come whenever we sang the Homeward Bound theme music. It worked, but probably because we were staring at her pointedly while we sang it.

  4. I'm not familiar with Homeward Bound (is it like the Incredible Journey?) but I did love Dogsbody. I haven't liked any other Wynne Jones books as well as that one.


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