Flawed Dogs: The Shocking Raid on Westminster

Berkeley Breathed, Author, Berkeley Breathed, Illustrator . Philomel $16.99 (216p) ISBN 978-0-399-25218-1

Bloom County cartoonist Breathed (Pete & Pickles ) makes the move from picture books to middle-grade fiction and, from the harrowing opening scene at a dog fight, readers will be rapt. After spending eight years isolated at a boarding school in Minnesota, 14-year-old orphan Heidy McCloud is invited to live with her dejected uncle Hamish, greedy Mrs. Beaglehole and their evil poodle, Cassius, on the vacant McCloud Heavenly Acres dog ranch in Piddleton, Vt., “Home of the World's Most Beautiful Dogs.” En route, Heidy meets Sam, a Duüglitz dachshund worth $180,000, and a reciprocal, platonic love is born. However, Cassius resents the attention Sam receives and sets a trap resulting in the dachshund's imprisonment in a pound with “the seven most ridiculous dogs [Sam] had ever seen,” as well as Sam's suffering an awful injury. But the dog's determination to reunite with Heidy doesn't wane. Dramatically lit and featuring comically exaggerated characters (human and canine alike), Berkeley's b&w artwork augments the story's drama and humor. A moving tale about the beauty of imperfections and the capacity for love. Ages 8–12. (Sept.)

Reviewed on: 07/20/2009
Release date: 09/01/2009
Hardcover - 36 pages - 978-0-316-71359-7
Open Ebook - 978-0-316-04957-3
Open Ebook - 208 pages - 978-1-101-13937-0
Peanut Press/Palm Reader - 208 pages - 978-1-101-14028-4
Downloadable Audio - 978-1-4561-1354-4
Prebound-Glued - 240 pages - 978-0-606-39787-2
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