In a time when nearly all dogs have been euthanized as a safety precaution, fifth-grader Ashley Dubois and her friend Mason discover a book that claims something unbelievable—that people and dogs once lived happily together. They seek a mad scientist named Dr. Bukowski to discover the truth.
Meanwhile, Amy-Bell, a Great Dane mix, is separated from her owners during a round-up of the few remaining dogs. As the reluctant leader of a small group of dogs who escaped, Amy-Bell tries to care for them.
When Ashley and Mason find Dr. Bukowski and his pack of renegade dogs, they’re shocked to find the animals aren’t vicious killers. So they join the quest to save the last dogs—Amy-Bell and her pack—before it’s too late.
A Note From the Publisher
Praise for Joe Siple's The Five Wishes of Mr. Murray McBride:
“A sweet, albeit by-the-book, tale of human connection.” –KIRKUS REVIEWS
“…an emotional story that will leave readers meditating on the life-saving magic of kindness.” –INDIE READER
“… a heartfelt story of two extremely different individuals who have one thing in common; death is staring them in the face.” –Authors Reading
Average rating from 9 members
I really enjoyed this novel and although it is a book for Young Adult audience, this not-so-young grandmother of two, thought it was a great read. The two heroes of the hour are Ashley Dubois and her friend Mason assisted by an eccentric scientist called Dr. Bukowski. The story is set in the USA, the only country worldwide that still kept dogs kept as pets despite it being a crime. Dogs had been outlawed following a report that branded them as vicious, dangerous and a menace to a civilised society. All the dogs in the world had been captured and euthanized, so Ashley and Mason were totally amazed when they saw old photographs of dogs with humans: a mutual partnership evident between the animal and human that seemed to be beneficial and caring. Feisty Ashley and grounded Mason go about on a mission to discover which side of the story is actually the truth. A second thread runs alongside the main artery of the story. This introduces the other side if the matter, with a Great Dane/Mongrel called Amy-Bell. She is on the run from the soldiers whose job it is to capture and kill all dogs and find those whose owners are disobeying the law and keeping their pets in hiding. She unwittingly becomes the leader of a pack of pet dogs that have become refugees and set free by their scared owners under the greatest of duress. The pets gather together, unused to living their lives in the wild and form a cooperative pack seeking shelter, food and most importantly safety, away from the danger of round-up. They want to survive persecution and live a peaceful life. These two exciting threads tell the compelling story of the last dogs. When the two threads merge we, the reader will discover what happens and why. I can definitely see the appeal of this novel to a Young Adult readership, but I would also recommend it to anybody who loves animals and enjoys a short novel that raises many questions and important issues to ponder over. The novel is very well structured, beautifully written and full of interesting and sometimes very poignant moments. The characterisation is excellent and the story well-paced and full of action. I received a complimentary copy of this absorbing novel from publisher Black Rose Writing through my membership of NetGalley. Thank you for my copy sent in return for an honest and unbiased review. It is a very quick, rewarding and easy read.
This book is a middle grade type book. I liked a little something the author wrote in his acknowledgements to start the book and I quote: « Adults might come away from this story thinking about the importance of communication in conflict resolution, or maybe about how groupthink and overreaction can exacerbate the very problems they seek to solve. And kids, I hope, will turn the last page thinking, “That was a cool story.” » Liked it because that is so much how I go into most of these doggiebooks, I rarely read too much into them, I’m looking for a cool story... That one was exactly that, a very interesting story. You can read the book blurb to get the gist of it as I try not to spoil too much of it. Think about an experiment gone wrong that causes people to think that dogs are dangerous and need to be eradicated. Crazy , I know, but I let myself be immersed in the story and it moved me. It’s a short book as is often the case with middle grade reads, but I thought it was well done. I also love books who have dog point of view writing. Fair warning, I had a couple of crying/near crying moments, not always of sadness, but maybe more for the emotions that the story conveyed toward my love and attachments to my boy... It’s another recommended read for me!! Huge thanks to NetGalley and publisher Black Rose Writing who provided a free eBook advanced reader’s copy in exchange for my honest review. This is as honest as it gets... #Malcolmstories #doggiebooks #NetGalley #TheLastDogs
I received this book "The Last Dogs" from NetGalley and all opinions expressed are my own. Although this is a middle school book I did like other books by Joe Sipple so I read this one. I love books about dogs and this was a quick read. A fun story!
Amy-Bell doesn’t understand why her owners are pushing her out thee window from the top floor of the house. They yell at her to run. Even though the soldiers don’t catch her, they take her owners away for a ten year prison term for harboring a dog. It has come to pass that all dogs hav been determined illegal to own as they are so vicious. Amy-Bell has run into the forest. She runs so long that she is exhausted and doesn’t understand why she had to run away. She is thirsty and drinks from a pond. Eventually Amy-Bell becomes the leader of the group of dogs. They successfully live together until inter is almost here. They won’t survive unless they can find a human to help them. Sadly the human calls the soldiers immeditely. They are all caught. Will they die? Malcolm at school grabs Ashley o tell her about his discovery of a reference book he read in the library. Ashley tells him not now as they need to get to class. After class they run to the library to read about dogs being man’s best friend. That confuses them. They go to see Dr. Bukowski to find out about dogs. Will they? In this book, I was amazed to learn what the title meant. It’s a fascinating story with twists and turns in their adventures. Malcolm is handicapped and gets very angry when someone calls him a cripple. Ashley doesn’t believe dogs can be friendly. I think in a way it also has a hint of what racism is. I think that because being afraid of someone different is a type of racism. It’s an excellent read about dogs and humans.
My Review: Can you imagine life where dogs are the mortal enemy and being exterminated to extinction? Yeah, me neither, so as a dog lover I was really intrigued by this book. It was a perfect book to pick up during Middle Grade March. It is great for young readers from 7 to 10 but I think readers of all ages would really enjoy it. The story takes place in Colorado in a setting about 70-80 years in the future, so it makes it easy for young readers to picture. I enjoyed the characters and quirky Dr. Bukowski was a great character, a grown up figure but like that odd great uncle. We also get the point of view from one of the dogs, Amy-Bell, which I think a lot of dog lovers will really enjoy. As an adult reader, I really enjoyed the story but it feels like just the tip of the iceberg, there is so much more that can happen after this story ends. My Rating: This was a really great book that gives readers a little something different than I have seen in a lot of Middle Grade books. I think young readers and older readers alike will really enjoy it. I give it a rating of Four Paws!
This is a gorgeous story for Middle-Grade students that covers a lot of aspects that link to our own society that could be discussed with the readers/with students. Set in a future USA, where dogs are now illegal and hunted down as 'dangerous animals', two children discover the truth behind the propaganda and set out to save the last dogs in the USA. The story deals with issues of genetic engineering, media/propaganda, as well as how a dog can truly be a person's best friend. I highly recommend this for any readers that love dogs, no matter your age!