Review: The Pet War by Allan Woodrow

the pet war by allan woodrow

THE PET WAR is a hilarious story about the timeless battles of dog vs. cat, brother vs. sister, know-it-all vs. know-nothing.

Eleven-year-old Otto wants a dog. His twelve-year-old perfect sister, Lexi, wants a cat. Their mother, who works very long hours as a nurse, wants neither. Pets are expensive so who’s going to pay for everything? And what happens to the pet when the siblings are at their dad’s for the weekend?
Otto has an idea. What if he got a job and earned enough money to pay for the dog? Then Lexi has to open her big mouth. She proposes that whichever sibling can raise enough money first will decide which pet they get. Oddly enough, their mom and dad agree.
With Otto and Lexi each out to defeat the other, their business plans become more elaborate and involved. As the competition gets fiercer, the stakes get higher, and the battle lines have been drawn, so let the Pet War begin. . . .

Description taken from Goodreads.


I was barely 6 or 7 when my family got its first dog (we are dog people), and I wasn’t ready a few years later when I became the main caretaker. Otto and Lexi are about four and five years older than I was, but this book still portrays much of the pains, struggles and joys that come with pet ownership as a kid.

The best thing about this book for me was that accurate portrayal of how it is to raise a pet.

There were many other good things about this story, but much of it was bland. The premise isn’t the most original, and the writing isn’t too distinctive in voice, but there’s a lot of potential in THE PET WAR. I loved getting to know the characters and hear about the various plots between Otto and Lexi.

The premise and plot more than makes up for the writing, and those elements aren’t bad at all. The relationships between the characters are really well-done, especially the one between Otto and Lexi. For any animal lover looking for a family-type read, I would definitely recommend this, along with Jacqueline Davies’ THE LEMONADE WAR. I’m really looking forward to what this author comes up with later this year. 3.5 stars.

pg count for the hardback: 272

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