From the Back: Daisy, age twelve, has died a swift death in a car accident. She finds herself in the afterworld, which resembles nothing more tha  just a job center. Her soul is being returned to Earth, but not as a human – she’s returning as a dog. A dog who is determined to get back to her parents and to get back home.

the dog ray

Cover: (Sorry for the blurry pic, it was the highest resolution I could find.) The cover is pretty simplistic, when it comes down to it. The outline of a girl shows Daisy before, and the dog shows her after. There are only a couple colors used throughout, and it gives the book a calming, simple feel. I liked the way that the “O” in “Dog” circled the dog’s head. My only issue is that, on my copy of the book, and other copies I have seen, the cover is slighly blurry, almost like somebody made the cover a little too small, and had to blow it up slightly.

Score: 4/5


Content: While this book is considered a YA novel, the writing was much more suited to a middle-school novel: not terrible, but not great. Many of the plot points seemed to not have an explanation outside of advancing the plot, leaving a few glaring plot holes. Besides this, one of the most interesting plot points, and one that was key to the ending, was the idea that we are reincarnated and slowly lose memories of our normal lives. And yet, despite its importance, it was only lightly brushed up upon a couple times before the ending. And when it comes to the ending, I can not describe in words how unfufilling the ending was. NOTICE: SPOILERS AHEAD! PROCEED WITH CAUTION! The book ended with Daisy losing all of her memories over the span of one page, and becoming just a dog. Here’s an excerpt: “And then there’s a noise like crashing, crumpling metal, and everywhere are diamonds catching the light. Diamonds in my hair and in my face and I’m flying now. Weightless. Nothing. Dark, empty nothing.” This continues for a few lines, before Daisy just forgets everything thats happened to her, and the book ends. The last line? “Happy. Happy. Happy. My Pip. Here.” And thats it! After 193 pages of character progression, it’s wiped away with a single line! SPOILERS OVER! CONTINE HERE!

Score: 2/5


Characters: Despite its genre being YA, the characters, again, were typical of a middle-school novel. The main character ruins many chances that she has to reunite with her family by not noticing that she can’t talk anymore. After multiple months time, you would think that a dog with the mind of a 12-year-old girl would realize that she can’t speak English, and yet, she continues to attempt to speak, with only a “woof” coming out. Another character, the father of Pip, when he realizes that his son that he never knew is there at his resturant, doesn’t react realistically. He calls his wife, and instead of saying: “Hey honey, I just found my long-lost son from before we were married”, he calls her and says “Hey honey, I won’t be back tonight. Something extraordinary has happened”. Then he HANGS UP and doesn’t return his wifes calls for the whole night! That isn’t how any sane human would handle this conversation!

Score: 2/5

Final Score: 8/15 (D)

My next review will be of Don’t You Tust Me?, by Patrice Kindl.