Inspector Ace and Sergeant Bubba
by Mavis E. Smith
Trafford Publishing

"Ace knew his little friend was brave, but sometimes he could be so stubborn. The fattest cat crouched low and went toward Inspector Ace and Sergeant Bubba."

Stories about the secret lives of dogs have been popular for decades. Hollywood films such as One Hundred and One Dalmatians and Oliver & Company have thrilled young audiences with tales of household pets and stray animals engaging in daring rescues and fantastic adventures, leading some children to speculate whether or not their own pets might be heroes in disguise. Following this theme, the author tells the story of a German Shepherd named Ace and a small Pomeranian called Bubba who bravely escort a lost tiger cub back to its mother.

Inspired by the interaction of Smith's own dog Ace with her friend Olivia's dog Bubba, the story starts out with Ace one night discovering what he thinks is a giant cat trying to climb the apple tree in his backyard. Unsure of what to do with such an intruder, Ace brings his best friend Bubba into the picture who informs his buddy that the cat is actually a tiger cub that has undoubtedly escaped from the circus. Wanting to do the right thing, the two decide to herd the cub back to the circus. But shepherding a baby tiger back to its mother in the middle of the night is not as easy as it sounds, and the two dogs will have to face down mean alley cats and an often reluctant cub to accomplish their mission.

Smith's book is a charming tale that is obviously designed to be read aloud to small children since the reading level is higher than that of the target age group. Illustrator Donnie Obina has even included a coloring page at the back to add to the story's interest. This tale of two heroic canines should easily appeal to young dog lovers.

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