Book Review: WHEN MR. DOG BITES
April 19, 2014
Genres: Fiction, YA
I received this book as an appreciation gift from HTBrunch magazine for completing their Brunch Book Reading Challenge of reading “at least” 24 books this year. And I did. For more you can read my earlier post on BrunchBookChallenge.
When Mr. Dog Bites by Brian Conaghan is a story about a sixteen year old Dylan Mint, who suffers from Tourette’s. For Dylan, life is a constant battle to keep the bad stuff in – the swearing, the tics, the howling dog that escapes whenever he gets stressed. And, as a sixteen-year-old virgin and pupil at Drumhill Special School, getting stressed is something of an occupational hazard. But then a routine visit to the hospital changes everything. Overhearing a hushed conversation between the doctor and his mother, Dylan discovers that he’s going to die next March. So he grants himself three parting wishes: three ‘Cool Things To Do Before I Cack It’. It isn’t a long list, but it is ambitious, and he doesn’t have much time. But as Dylan sets out to make his wishes come true, he discovers that nothing – and no-one – is quite as he had previously supposed.
It’s a fine YA book but with some pretty bad language. That kind of language is not suitable for pre-teens. The publishers have taken care of that. They have given a warning regarding the explicit content. But overall, the book is an interesting and enjoyable read. Despite the fact, the narrative is what I quite like in it. From the point of view of a sixteen year old, the book is different from the other day-to-day YA books, which is what makes it special. There isn’t much of the plot or characterization, but the setting is good. No flaw, in either characterization or the plot. The pace is good also, satisfactory to the reader as I was able to finish it in four hours. The use of typesetting to convey the effects of Tourettes on Dylan is excellent and makes this an interesting read. In addition, the use of letters in this book work very well to sum up , and they certainly help to show Dylan’s character development throughout this novel.
The most positive fact that, it is humorous, this book made me laugh out loud on many occasions and as the plot advanced, I was completely engrossed in it. Some of the scenes between Dylan and his mother were quite touching. Good use sentiments. It’s an easy read, one of those books which have set a different level of first person narration, and for this I appreciate the effort made by the author. If you are in awe of some humor, it’s a defo.
3.5 out of 5!