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The Dogs
     

The Dogs

4.4 9
by Allan Stratton
 

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Cameron and his mom have been on the run for five years. His father is hunting them. At least, that’s what Cameron’s been told.
When they settle in an isolated farmhouse, Cameron starts to see and hear things that aren’t possible. Soon he’s questioning everything he thought he knew and even his sanity.

‘It’s about ghosts

Overview

Cameron and his mom have been on the run for five years. His father is hunting them. At least, that’s what Cameron’s been told.
When they settle in an isolated farmhouse, Cameron starts to see and hear things that aren’t possible. Soon he’s questioning everything he thought he knew and even his sanity.

‘It’s about ghosts and terrifying danger and going mad all at once. I didn’t know what was real and what was imagined until the very last page. I loved it!’ Melvin Burgess

‘Brilliant, page-turning and eerie. Had me guessing to the very end’ Joseph Delaney

Editorial Reviews

EBOOK COMMENTARY
"Stratton masterfully constructs a creepy gothic setting, using italicized interior monologue to show Cameron's mind at odds with himself, and readers will soon suspect that Cameron may well be unhinged as they try to discern what is real and what is the product of Cameron's 'thinking like a lunatic.' A monstrous, stalking father, unhinging nightmares, a ghostly boy, wild dogs, and a moldy basement add creepy deliciousness to a murder mystery and tale of a boy who, in trying to solve a mystery, may just discover what a loving family might be. An engrossing blend of murder mystery and family story." - Kirkus, starred review

"The Dogs is a creepy thriller that explores the effects of trauma, paranoia, and fear... with the eerie supernatural element, it will keep pages turning well into the night. It is a great book to read on a storm fall night with the wind howling and the branches tapping at your window. A great thriller for MG and older." - Young Adult Book Central

"An Agatha Christie mystery novel on cocaine" - SLJ Teen Newsletter

"A real page-turner... [The Dogs] stayed with me for days, author Allan Stratton having created an unsettled aura the likes of which Alfred Hitchcock and Stephen King routinely built into their work, too... Stratton's depiction of setting and characters is masterful, and his ability to create tension and keep readers on edge is equally strong.
" - Montreal Gazette

"It is increasingly rare to find genuine, convincing narratives that have us looking over our shoulders. The Dogs is such a narrative... At every point in the story there are two possible interpretations of the events: one based on accepting the supernatural and one based on realistic possibility... The architecture of these intertwining plots is strong and graceful... What would it be like if the most frightening thing in your world lay at the heart of your own family? Stratton imagines this horror fully and convincingly.
" - Quill and Quire

"The Dogs allows the reader to use their imagination. Like Fuzzy Mud, by Louis Sachar, it's a great book to use in a classroom or a book discussion group. " - By Hook Or By Book

"There are secrets that nobody wants to talk about and nightmares about things in the past. It's hard to tell what is real and what is in Cameron's imagination. The unexpected ending makes this sure to be a favorite with mystery readers. Recommended.
" - School Library Connection

"In this gripping psychological thriller, the reader wonders whether the tenuous grip Cameron seems to have on reality is because of his own past or if there is truth to the visions and voices the teen perceives. As his increasingly odd behavior begins to alarm his mother, Cameron wonders if he can trust his own mind. This thrilling page-turner builds to a dramatic climax which interweaves the personal story Cameron has managed to suppress, as well as the sad, violent story of the McTavish family" - VOYA Magazine

"This novel derives its horror from Hitchcockian suspense rather than torture and bloodshed, with the steady revelations of the old house's gruesome mysteries paralleling Cameron's increasing endangerment. This will be an easy sell to teens on the prowl for a done-in-a-night thriller." - Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

From the Publisher
"Stratton masterfully constructs a creepy gothic setting, using italicized interior monologue to show Cameron's mind at odds with himself, and readers will soon suspect that Cameron may well be unhinged as they try to discern what is real and what is the product of Cameron's 'thinking like a lunatic.' A monstrous, stalking father, unhinging nightmares, a ghostly boy, wild dogs, and a moldy basement add creepy deliciousness to a murder mystery and tale of a boy who, in trying to solve a mystery, may just discover what a loving family might be. An engrossing blend of murder mystery and family story." - Kirkus, starred review

"A fast-paced psychological thriller...Readers will find the supernatural insinuations and elements terrifying; wrapped up in a mystery that the boy must solve, they will also begin to hope that they are real-as they are preferable to the possibility that Cameron is losing his mind. A shocking ending and an unexpected visit from the titular beasts make this novel a compelling choice, and one that reluctant readers will also find appealing." - School Library Journal

"The Dogs is a creepy thriller that explores the effects of trauma, paranoia, and fear... with the eerie supernatural element, it will keep pages turning well into the night. It is a great book to read on a storm fall night with the wind howling and the branches tapping at your window. A great thriller for MG and older." - Young Adult Book Central

"An Agatha Christie mystery novel on cocaine" - SLJ Teen Newsletter

"A real page-turner... [The Dogs] stayed with me for days, author Allan Stratton having created an unsettled aura the likes of which Alfred Hitchcock and Stephen King routinely built into their work, too... Stratton's depiction of setting and characters is masterful, and his ability to create tension and keep readers on edge is equally strong.
" - Montreal Gazette

"It is increasingly rare to find genuine, convincing narratives that have us looking over our shoulders. The Dogs is such a narrative... At every point in the story there are two possible interpretations of the events: one based on accepting the supernatural and one based on realistic possibility... The architecture of these intertwining plots is strong and graceful... What would it be like if the most frightening thing in your world lay at the heart of your own family? Stratton imagines this horror fully and convincingly.
" - Quill and Quire

"The Dogs allows the reader to use their imagination. Like Fuzzy Mud, by Louis Sachar, it's a great book to use in a classroom or a book discussion group. " - By Hook Or By Book

"There are secrets that nobody wants to talk about and nightmares about things in the past. It's hard to tell what is real and what is in Cameron's imagination. The unexpected ending makes this sure to be a favorite with mystery readers. Recommended.
" - School Library Connection

"In this gripping psychological thriller, the reader wonders whether the tenuous grip Cameron seems to have on reality is because of his own past or if there is truth to the visions and voices the teen perceives. As his increasingly odd behavior begins to alarm his mother, Cameron wonders if he can trust his own mind. This thrilling page-turner builds to a dramatic climax which interweaves the personal story Cameron has managed to suppress, as well as the sad, violent story of the McTavish family" - VOYA Magazine

"This novel derives its horror from Hitchcockian suspense rather than torture and bloodshed, with the steady revelations of the old house's gruesome mysteries paralleling Cameron's increasing endangerment. This will be an easy sell to teens on the prowl for a done-in-a-night thriller." - Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

VOYA, October 2015 (Vol. 38, No. 4) - Erin Wyatt
Cameron lives a life of isolation, largely due to the paranoia his mom has about her ex-husband finding the family after a tumultuous history. While Cameron is not sure if he can trust his memory of life with his dad, just thinking that he has found them again is enough for his mom to move the family in the middle of the night to an old farmhouse. Cameron immediately feels he is being watched on the new property. The farm has a strange mystique around town and bullies at school begin barking, referencing the dogs and mentioning a murder at the house. Cameron finds a strange folder of artwork and mementos in the neglected cellar from Jacky McTavish, a young boy who previously lived on the farm. When Jacky begins visiting Cameron, he suspects foul play in the past and upsets many in the town in the process of his quest to uncover the truth. In this gripping psychological thriller, the reader wonders whether the tenuous grip Cameron seems to have on reality is because of his own past or if there is truth to the visions and voices the teen perceives. As his increasingly odd behavior begins to alarm his mother, Cameron wonders if he can trust his own mind. This thrilling page-turner builds to a dramatic climax which interweaves the personal story Cameron has managed to suppress, as well as the sad, violent story of the McTavish family. Reviewer: Erin Wyatt; Ages 11 to 18.
School Library Journal
07/01/2015
Gr 7–10—Cameron and his mother have been on the run from Cameron's father for years. His mother's terror is palpable, but Cameron doesn't quite remember what his dad did to cause all this fear. That's not to say that the teen isn't haunted—when their latest move lands them in a creepy old farmhouse, Cameron's nightmares, irritable behavior, and his burgeoning friendship with a dead child who used to live on the farm point to either a sensitivity to the supernatural or a descent into mental illness. As the protagonist becomes more interested in the property's grisly past, he turns a blind eye to the terror and trauma of his own past, to a dangerous end. Cameron's earnest, straightforward narration takes some of the energy out of what should be, detail by detail, a satisfying horror story. It's only through Cameron's chilling phone conversations with his estranged father that readers will get that electric charge. The tone and structure of the novel indicate a younger readership, but the specifics of the story are fairly grim. VERDICT Psychological family horror for those not quite ready for Daniel Kraus's Scowler (Delacorte, 2013).—Beth McIntyre, Madison Public Library, WI
Kirkus Reviews
★ 2015-06-16
Cameron Weaver's father tried to kill his mother, and now they are on the run, again. Cameron and his mother have moved into a "creep house" in Wolf Hollow, a house perhaps haunted and rumored to have been the site of murders and bodies never recovered. What seems to be known is the former owner of the house, Mr. McTavish, was an abusive husband and father, and some believe he murdered his son, wife, and her lover. Cameron seems to see the ghost of young Jacky McTavish, and his active imagination begins concocting murder scenarios, such as bodies wrapped in plastic and hanging from a rafter in the nailed-shut attic. Stratton masterfully constructs a creepy gothic setting, using italicized interior monologue to show Cameron's mind at odds with himself, and readers will soon suspect that Cameron may well be unhinged as they try to discern what is real and what is the product of Cameron's "thinking like a lunatic." A monstrous, stalking father, unhinging nightmares, a ghostly boy, wild dogs, and a moldy basement add creepy deliciousness to a murder mystery and tale of a boy who, in trying to solve a mystery, may just discover what a loving family might be.An engrossing blend of murder mystery and family story. (Suspense. 12-16)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781448187522
Publisher:
Andersen Press, Limited
Publication date:
02/05/2015
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
304
File size:
2 MB
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

Read an Excerpt

The Dogs

Meet the Author

Allan Stratton is the internationally bestselling and awarded author of Chanda’s Secrets, which was made into the Cannes Festival hit Life, Above All. Awards include the Printz Honour Book, two Junior Library Guild selections (US), two Canadian Library Association Best Book Awards, inclusion on the inaugural Pearson Foundation/Writers' Trust Read-for-Your-School list, and a Times Book of the Week. His work has been published in fifteen countries. For more information, please visit his website at www.allanstratton.com

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The Dogs 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 9 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was by far the top 3 of my favorite books I could not put it down
224perweek More than 1 year ago
Creepy, scary, disturbing................all the right stuff. This was a great story. Some seriously good detective work also. Kind of about abuse with murder thrown in. A must read for those who enjoy a good mystery.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this book because it got me from the first page and held my interest till the very end. This book is about Cameron who lives with his mother who is in hiding from an abusive husband/father. All through the book you wonder if the father was abusive to Cameron. Cameron had moved about 3 times before his mother found a perfect house for them somewhere in the midwest. Little did the mother know that Cameron would think that there was a ghost in it. While reading the book I can't say whether I liked the ghost story part, mystery or psych thriller aspect of the book because they are all tied in nicely. This book has a bully, off beat people and your average run of the mill people in it. If you want a fast pace book this is it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A main character who you will like and empathize with. Other characters are well drawn also. Gothic mystery that builds to a good conclusion. Adults and YA will both enjoy this novel.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved everything about this story!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved it, if you like mysterys and ghost storirs then you must read this book, it has it all, Brilllant writing!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Deb-Krenzer More than 1 year ago
Yowza, this was one creepy book. I started reading it around 11:00 p.m. and thankfully my new pills kicked in or I would not have been able to go to sleep. Talk about a ghost story. This one definitely had it and the ghost was only seen by a 15 year old kid that had been and was on the run with his mother from his alcoholic, abusive father. So not only did he have that going on, but now he had an abused ghost jacking with him. Of course, no one believed him as he tried to sort out the story he was being told by the ghost. Unfortunately, he got the leader of the most popular gang's great grandma re-involved and that certainly did not give him, as the new boy in town, any brownie points. This was definitely a hair raising, goose pimpling read. While the number of people who start to disbelieve Cameron, the 15 year old boy, start to multiply, ending with his own mother, the reader knows differently. You'll be rooting for this boy and yelling at him, "Don't do it" and "Run" more times than you can count. As you can tell, I really got into this book and highly recommend it! It's good, but change of underwear is not necessarily required. I would like to thank Sourcebooks and Net Galley for allowing me to read this incredibly chilling, spooky and entertaining e-galley in exchange for an honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Hfgg