Welcome to the Dogs Monthly Book Club. Each month we review our pick of the latest releases, with an opportunity to win for lucky readers! If you would like to enter the prize draw, please email [email protected] with the name of the book you would like to receive in the subject line. Please remember to include your name and full address. Entries close 23 February 2018.

Buddy the War Dog by JA McEnnis

Review by Elizabeth Wacker-Caulfield

Buddy the War Dog is a captivating story about a canine hero of the Second World War.

The book begins with a dog named Bob giving the account of his seventh great-grandfather, Buddy, and his involvement in the war effort. It starts out at his humble beginnings because at the beginning of the war, people were told to put down their non-essential pest to save rations. Buddy and few others were spared that fate because of their own talent and the love of those around him.

Buddy picks up many friends along the way-from Sid, his handler, to Peg, the little collie dog that he works with on search and rescue operations, saving many lives. He also befriends dogs like Spam and Tigger, whom he meets at the training school for war dogs.

Buddy the War Dog covers the loss of loved ones, family and friends, and several times I found myself in tears because of the emotions it evoked in me. This book does a really great job of giving a firsthand account of not only the battlefield but the bond between brothers in arms.

My personal feelings about this book are simple: it’s a great read, emotionally provoking, and I enjoyed it immensely. It deals with the bond between human and dog from the home front to behind enemy lines, survival of the London blitz, Nazi persecution and espionage.

Buddy the War Dog is a book I respect not only because of its well-written content but also the charitable cause it supports: with every book sold, £1 is donated to Labrador Rescue.

On the Dog Walk by David J Robertson

Illustrated by Ian R Ward

In their third adventure, Misty and her friends are attempting to stay out of trouble yet again, with limited success.

Meet the four pals: Misty the Border Collie and narrator; One-Eyed Rose, who hasn’t let a nasty accident as a pup get in her way; Rascal, a German Shepherd who’s really just a big scaredy-cat; and wise old Bertie. They may not be the cleverest of dogs, but their light-hearted adventures will surely provide heaps of entertainment for a young audience aged seven to 11 years.

Woven into the story is a heart-warming message about friendship as the four friends, despite their different personalities, strengths and weaknesses, work together and help each other to find a way out of their tricky situation.

The chapters are perfectly illustrated by artist Ian R Ward, bringing life and colour to the characters.

Inspired by his own Border Collie, David J Robertson, a former engineer turned children’s author, released the first of the troublesome group’s instalment, Dognapped, in 2016 followed by In The Doghouse!

In their latest adventure, enjoy following them as they chase rabbits, avoid creepy crawlies, get lost and upset an angry farmer. Can Rascal face his fear? Can Misty ignore her natural sheepdog instincts? And will they find their way safely home?

Tails of Friendship by Sally Grace

Sally Grace says she has never lived without a dog or a camera in the opening page of this photography book – a comforting collection, highlighting the unconditional friendship we receive from our dogs.

Over her 20 years as a photographer, Sally has learnt one rule to add magic to any photo – add a dog.

Each black and white photo shows a canine-human friendship combined with some quirky quotes and words of wisdom – some from famous names and others from the dogs themselves!

Each image will bring a smile to your face and provides a glimpse into what dogs mean to the people of the English village where Sally lives. Dogs take centre stage as we see Labradors enjoying teatime and a game of tennis, a reading Sproodle (English Springer Spaniel-Poodle) and lots of doggie cuddles and paw-shakes.

A feel-good book to treasure and the perfect gift for a dog lover.

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