Time for another round of Yvo’s Shorties! This time a book by childhood favorite author that failed to charm me and a book I can’t believe hadn’t been on my radar before now.


Title: George’s Marvelous Medicine
Author: Roald Dahl

Genre: Children, Fantasy, Fiction
First published: 1981
Publisher: Puffin
Finished reading: March 10th 2021 
Pages: 95

“George didn’t say a word. He felt quite trembly. He knew something tremendous had taken place that morning. For a few brief moments he had touched with the very tips of his fingers the edge of a magic world.”


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I confess that I can’t actually remember reading this one before, although I probably did as I literally devoured Roald Dahl‘s books when I was little. That said, I don’t think I read it all that often, and now I’ve read it again as an adult I can understand why. I don’t think George’s Marvelous Medicine is one of his strongest books, as nothing much happens beyond naming all the strange ingredients of the ‘medicine’… And then I’m not even talking about being afraid to hand this book to a kid and said kid making their own version of the medicine and trying to poison someone. Seriously, I like the whole ‘main character against evil’ vibe most of his books have, but a small kid poisoning his grandmother?! And the way his grandmother talks to him and how his parents react to the whole situation afterwards? Not something I would want my own kid to read to be honest. Sure, his well known writing style and humor is still here, but I think I’m glad this is one of his lesser known books. It should come with a huge ‘don’t try this at home‘ warning, and I don’t think I would recommend kids reading it just to be on the safe side… Both for the possibility of a disastrous experiment and the fact that this story seems to show that it’s ok to poison your grandmother (fantasy genre or not).


Title: A Dog’s Purpose
(A Dog’s Purpose #1)
Author: W. Bruce Cameron

Genre: Fiction, Contemporary
First published: June 29th 2010
Publisher: Forge Books
Finished reading: March 20th 2021
Pages: 320

“My purpose, my whole life, had been to love him and be with him, to make him happy. I didn’t want to cause any unhappiness now—in that way, I decided it was probably better than he wasn’t here to see this, though I missed him so much at that moment the ache of it was as bad as the strange pains in my belly.”


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I’m still not sure why A Dog’s Purpose was never on my radar before… While I’m firmly in the cat person camp, I do also own a dog and love animals in general; the same goes for any story involving animals. The premise of A Dog’s Purpose with the story being actually told from the POV of a dog is SO unique! And I definitely understand the love for this book now… It’s a story that manages to provoke so many emotions, and while I didn’t actually cry, I did have a lump in my throat more than once. Heartwarming, heartrending, sad, hopeful, provoking, endearing… A Dog’s Purpose is basically an emotional rollercoaster and your heart will break and soar as you see the different lives of the dog. A little warning as it does involve some animal cruelty, but as a whole it shows how powerful a relationship between human and dog can be. It also has a deeper meaning, with the dog contemplating what his/her purpose is and why he/she keeps getting reborn. The same goes for the whole learning from the past and finding your way… The writing did feel a bit simple, but I liked how the dog and his/her thoughts were portrayed. In short, it was definitely a heartfelt story and I will be looking forward to read the sequel.


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