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Smells Like Dog

Review

Smells Like Dog

Drake Horatio Pudding is a renowned treasure hunter, hot on the trail of Rumpold Smeller’s fortune, when he meets his untimely demise. His nephew, Homer Winslow Pudding, idolized him and hoped one day to follow in Uncle Drake’s footsteps as a “professional treasure hunter.”

When the Pudding family first learns that Uncle Drake is dead, they believe it was a tragic accident. The report says he was eaten by a “man-eating tortoise.” Sounds a bit strange, but maybe it could really happen. However, when the estate lawyers deliver all of Uncle Drake’s earthly possessions, they don’t amount to much: only a pair of boots (which were left sticking out of the tortoise’s mouth), a basset hound with no name, and a note to Homer that says Uncle Drake is giving Homer his “most valued possession.”

When Homer finds a coin attached to the dog’s collar with the letters “L.O.S.T.” on it, Homer thinks this is the “most valued possession.” But time and circumstances make him wonder what really happened to Uncle Drake and his possessions, particularly the map leading to Rumpold Smeller’s treasure.

Homer’s father has warned Homer and all his family members never to go into “The City” because bad things always happen there. He issued that same warning to his brother Drake, but Drake didn’t listen to him. Drake’s death, by the jaws of the tortoise in the City Park, is proof that The City is not safe and that absolutely no one from the Pudding family should go there.

So where does Homer wind up? In The City, of course. He is on a quest to find out what type of coin his uncle left him and what the initials “L.O.S.T.” mean. He is also trying to locate Uncle Drake’s treasure map.

The fun, twisted plot involves the dog, who has a strange sense of smell; the law firm Snooty and Snooty with its secretary, Twaddle; Madame la Directeur, the director of the Museum of Natural History who is looking for something of Homer’s; Ajitabh, a wacky inventor; a giant named Zelda; and Lorelei, a street urchin.

Suzanne Selfors’s third middle-grade novel is sure to be a hit. But don’t take my word for it. Read it yourself --- and enjoy!

Reviewed by Christine M. Irvin on April 12, 2011

Smells Like Dog
by Suzanne Selfors

  • Publication Date: April 12, 2011
  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
  • ISBN-10: 0316043974
  • ISBN-13: 9780316043977