Castle in the Mist by Robert J. McCarty

Book 2 in the Planet of the Dogs series finds the dogs and Daisy and Bean up against another threat to peace, love and happiness.

In a castle surrounded at night by a mysterious mist, Prince Ukko rules. The young prince, angry and hurt over the sudden loss of his father, whose fate is unknown, Ukko and his soldiers make war against neighboring peoples. When the traitorous Urch brothers, kidnap Nik and Nikki, the children of Bik, leader of the Stone City tribe, a year of peace that has reigned for the Stone City tribe is threatened.

Will the dogs and Daisy and Bean be able to help rescue Nik and Nikki from the Castle in the Mist before it is too late for them to stop the Stone City warriors from unwillingly going to battle against Prince Ukko and his Black Hawk tribe?

I’m impressed with the second book in the Planet of the Dogs series. Perhaps the smoothest flowing out of all three books, many of the charaters that readers have heard about in the first book, return in Castle in the Mist for another adventure. While still relying heavily on narration to move the story along, we see the results of what happened in Book 1 and how many of the characters work together to try and prevent the Stone City tribe from returning to their ways of war to rescue Nik and Nikki from the castle in the mist.

There are many new characters to enjoy as well: the healers, Sola and Anga, the Douglas family, and many new dogs who have journeyed from the Planet of the Dogs by Miss Merrie and the dog council’s orders to help remind the people of earth about love, peace, and friendship.

Having read all three books now, I have a better feel for the author’s vision for this series–at least, I hope I do. The illustrations provided by Stella M. McCarty add a great deal to the story.

I look forward to many more books in the Planet of Dogs series.

Rating:  🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

  • Publisher: Barking Planet Productions
  • ISBN-10: 0978692810
  • ISBN-13: 978-0978692810
  • SRP:  $14.95

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    Planet of the Dogs by Robert J. McCarty

    This is where it all began. Planet of the Dogs is the first in the Planet of the Dogs series of books by Robert J. McCarty.

    The story begins “long, long ago” before dogs had ever come to Planet Earth. Many people helped settle the many beautiful areas of this planet, but with abundance came greed, and soon the people of Earth were threatened by warriors like the tribes of Stone City who had forgotten about love and friendship. Instead these warriors hurt people and stole from them.

    Miss Merrie, queen on the Planet of Dogs, along with the dog council, decide that something must be done; that some dogs will journey to the Planet Earth to remind the people of Earth about love and friendship, in the hopes that they can all live in peace.

    In this introduction to the Planet of the Dogs series, the Stone City warriors are set on invading Green Valley, where Tomas and Sara live with their children, Daisy and Bean. That is, until Daisy and Bean meet Lucy, Robbie, and Buddy from the Planet of the Dogs. The children journey to the Planet of the Dogs and learn of the dogs’ plan to restore peace. Is it possible that such strange creatures can convince Bik, the leader of the Stone City warriors, that all people can live in peace?

    Having already read, the third book in this series, Snow Valley Heroes, I was looking forward to seeing how the dogs had originally come to Earth. This book, like the others in this series, relies heavily on narration, as it is meant to be a story that is shared and read aloud.  Actually, I think these would make excellent books to use in the classroom, as the concepts of problem solving, acceptance, and tolerance flows through all three of the Planet of the Dogs books.

    If you love dogs, enjoy fantasy, and like to share stories with the family, Planet of the Dogs will certainly be a good choice for you.

    Rating:  🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

  • Publisher: Barking Planet Productions
  • ISBN-10: 0978692802
  • ISBN-13: 978-0978692803
  • SRP:  $14.95

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    Snow Valley Heroes by Robert J. McCarty

    a_Snow_Valley_HeroesA story of how dogs came to earth and how they helped save Christmas is what you’ll find in Snow Valley Heroes: A Christmas Tale (Planet of the Doge Volume 3).

    Banished to the Ice Castle, the King of the North seeks revenge.  What better way to get revenge than to ruin Christmas?  When Tip and Top, two of Santa’s elves discover that Dasher and Dancer are missing, the Dog Council calls upon Daisy and Bean to help some of their friends from the Planet of Dogs travel to earth to save Santa’s reindeer.

    There is so much to like about Snow Valley Heroes. Christmas stories are always huge hits in our house because we love the season; but when you combine that with imagination and creativity, those stories are even better.  With the elves, reindeer, the dogs, the evil King of the North and his Royal Guards, and the Tundra Town Traders, McCarty has brought together many captivating elements to create a beautiful story.  The illustrations provided by Stella Mustanoja McCarty are absolutely stunning and add a great deal to an already charming story.

    This series has a ton of potential, but I have to admit that I see this being a story that should be read out loud because it depends heavily upon narration to carry the storyline.  Not surprisingly, these stories were inspired by those the author told to his children and grandchildren, which explains the large amount of narration.  Storytelling and writing a story are different.  Because Snow Valley Heroes uses so much narration to tell the story, even though there are excellent descriptions of the surroundings, character development suffers a bit.  I felt unconnected to the characters throughout the story and by the end I felt I didn’t know much more about them than when I started.

    This challenge aside, dog lovers, children who enjoy fantasy, and anyone who likes to read a fun Christmas story will want to read Snow Valley Heroes.  I am eager to see what Robert McCarty comes up with next for Planet of the Dogs.

    Rating: 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

  • Publisher: Barking Planet Productions
  • ISBN-10: 0978692829
  • ISBN-13: 978-0978692827
  • SRP: $14.95

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