I'll admit that I was initially a bit put off this book by the front cover picture and description on the back cover, as I'm not very interested in books about war and fighting. However, although it is set during the first world war and a lot of the scenes take place close to the front lines in France, this story is so much more than just a war book.
Fourteen year old Stanley is the main (human!) character and he is endearing and well written. The supporting characters (human and canine) spring into life from the pages and managed to bring forth just about every emotion in me. Happy to angry, frustrated to sad, i finished this feeling wrung out and left me an emotional wreck!
This book is extremely rare in that I didn't pick up a single grammatical error whilst reading. I have to say I can't honestly remember when that last happened. The use of vocabulary is wide and the descriptive language fantastic.
This is a tale of love, betrayal, hurt, pride, family and, most importantly to me, it depicts the level of emotion that I feel for my dogs like nothing else I've ever read. A true masterpiece that I'll be recommending to all my friends, especially my fellow dog lovers. This book just made me want to cuddle my hounds all the way through. Brilliant brilliant writing.