Review of Dr. Alex Valentine’s Zip & Milly
Lately, my reading has been pretty heavy with much of it consisting of cartels, the sinking of the Lusitania, and the strengths and weaknesses of being an introvert. So when my friend Alex told me he’d written a new book about a couple of dogs that get into some shenanigans, I was all in.
Dr. Alex Valentine’s new book Zip & Milly is about two Spaniels who emigrate from Europe to Ducklingburg in the American South. The Old Lady who owns Zip and Milly is a scientist who has made an incredible discovery – eternal youth, and possibly immortality. As you might imagine, there are some folks who’d like to get their paws (please pardon the pun) on her work. Zip and Milly do their best to look out for their Old Lady. And they seem pretty smart and resourceful for a couple of Spaniels. Of course, I only have my Golden Retriever to compare them against, and she’s a disappointment to her breed when it comes to intelligence.
Here’s a letter Zip wrote to give you a better idea of what you can expect to encounter in Zip & Milly:
My Human, the Old Lady (that’s her name) is a Russian scientist. Old Lady made a huge scientific discovery: found the key to my eternal youth. Or even to immortality, if we like.
Old Lady made herself immortal first. I don’t blame her. Next, Martha-the-White-Rat. Then, me and my sister Milly—we trace our pedigree through the purest blood lines of Bavarian-born Spaniels. But then she stopped.
My other siblings look all aged by now. But at my 17, I look no more than three or four. My sister Milly got stuck at puppy age.
We follow our relatives on Facebook, and we are saddened that Old Lady did not make them immortal too. That she keeps it a secret. And I am so worried about my friend Fox Theodore. He is at the height of his financial and physical might now, but I know he will age. My best friend.
I once tried to unlock the Secret. Me and Raccoon. (Raccoon’s a human, but he is sort of my buddy.) Big mistake. Lots other Humans came coveting the Secret too; lots of unpleasantness and funny stories. Mostly unpleasantness.
In the aftermath, Old Lady had to flee—and I got misplaced. All my own fault. Now I’m trying to get found.
Have you seen my Old Lady? You’d recognize her: her hands and face are way too young, plus she always clips her amber brooch. If you see her, tell her where I stay:
7 White Goose Lane,
Ducklingburg, South Duck
United State of America
P.S. Tell her from me that she is the very finest Human in the whole world and that I am very lonely here without her.
Zip, the Spaniel Dog
When asked what inspired him to write the book, Valentine responded: “I got sick of all the dog stories where the dog dies tragically. Sure, Zip & Milly get entangled in lots of scary adventures. But at the end of the day, every dog in my book will be thoroughly washed in Old Lady’s big warm bathtub, and licking warm milk with eggs. You can count on it.”
Valentine is releasing Zip & Milly in seven weekly episodes, which is a fun way to publish a book. At $0.99 per episode, it has the added advantage of enabling you to buy in at minimal cost to see if the book works for you. Zip & Milly is appropriate for adolescents and engaging enough for adults to enjoy as well. If you’re looking for something entertaining and smartly written this summer, Zip & Milly fits the bill. All of the episodes are (or will be) available on Amazon. First up, Zip & Milly: Big Water.