Monday 12 June 2023

Michael, the Amazing Mind-Reading Sausage Dog!

 by Terrie Chilvers; Artwork by Tim Budgen. 


Small book cover. Michael the sausage dog stands in the centre of the cover on top of a red and yellow starry conical shaped half drum. He wears a spangly yellow waistcoat with red bowtie and has an upturned silver toped cane in his paw. Three dogs on each side of the cover looin and up at Micael, who stands in twin spotlights aagainst a pale blue starry backdrop. Michael's name in the title is in large red letters picked out through their centres in two tone yellow bulbs. Terrie Chilvers name and Tim Budgens appear at the bottom of the book in pale blue and yellow respectively.

An Adventure Book Review by Erin the Literary Cat©, International Book Reviewer.

Hello, and welcome to my Sunday into Monnday Book Review and selfie featuring Adventures in Middle-Grade Fiction.
If you're here for a selfie, scroll on down!

This week we are proud to host the final, tail wagging leg of a Book Tour for this new kids' adventure featuring one determined Sausage Dog called Michael. 


Before we do the honours, let's just nip over to Upper Much-Mousing to see what Erin is up to . . . .

"What are you doing, dear?" Mrs H had just entered the Manor House's library room. She held a tray with Erin's mid-morning snack and a brown paper-wrapped package. It had been delivered by No Brakes Home Delivery Service, an offshoot of Mrs Singh's ever-increasing attempts to diversify her corner shop empire. Sadly, the name lived up to the quality of Farmer Clarksins's old Land Rover, which Mrs Singh had salvaged from the village pond after a late-night revel had gone awry.

"I'm practising my clairvoyance, Mrs H," Erin replied, taking her paw away from her temple.

"Are you any good?" Mrs H's raised eyebrow reflected the scepticism she had come to expect from Erin's numerous and failed endeavours, no matter how well-intentioned. There was always a first time, though; she decided to put her companion to the test. "Hmm. Well, tell me what you have divined so far?"

"Well, for starters I knew you were going to come in here at this very moment. And that you'd have a book wrapped in brown."

Mrs H rolled her eyes and sighed. "Hardly a surprise given it was delivered by the courier, earlier and I ALWAYS bring your snack and post at this time. But go on, is there anything else?"

"Well, I knew you'd roll your eyes and say that."  

"I always say that, dear."

"I knew you'd say that too. And if you don't believe me, I wrote it down on this piece of paper and sealed it in an envelope I posted yesterday." Erin pointed to the small white envelope sticking out of Mrs H's apron. "Go on, open it."

Mrs H did just that and raised both eyebrows in surprise. "Almost word-perfect, Erin. I am almost impressed. Tell me, though, what is in the package?"

"Hang on." Placing a paw to her temple again, Erin closed her eyes and gave a somewhat constipated look that had Mrs H quite taken aback. "It's coming through. Yes, it's a free book about sausages. No. No hang on, it's about a dog made of sausages. No, drat. The mist is clearing now and I see the name Michael and an amazing adventure."

Mrs H delved into the cardboard packaging to reveal a red-covered book with a Dachshund on the cover. "Most impressive, dear. But tell me, how much would this morning's special delivery cost. If it hadn't been free that is. If you get it right I'll let you off your chores. Wrong, and you'll have to help me sort out my chores. How's that sound?"

"Easy peasy." Erin strained again and let out a low meditative chant. Her eyes snapped open, and she smiled. "It is a snip at only £6.99 from all good bookshops."

"Sorry dear, but that is incorrect. It actually cost £699 plus a hefty tip to the courier so he can have physio on his back."

The smile on Erin's face disappeared instantly."What! It can't be. The price I paid on the site was £6.99."

"Ahha. Got you. The price of a book may be £6.99, dear, but the price for 100 copies is one hundred times more. I think you have been, how they say, rumbled. Fortunately, I have spoken to the publisher and they will take back ninety-eight copies and credit my card."

"Oh. Well, I guess I need to practice some more then, Mrs H. Still look on the bright side, at least you don't have to carry them to Mrs Singhs to post back."

Mrs H smiled. "That is one blessing for sure, dear. YOU, however, as part of your chores, will be doing it. I'll get the pony and trap ready and you can take her and the surplus books back to Mrs Singh where you can help package them up. Then you can do the shopping" With that, Mrs H turned and strolled out of the room, leaving Erin wide-eyed, stunned and wondering how her scheme had gone so terribly wrong. Which, of course, Mrs H had known all along it would, and that wasn't down to mind reading!

And now, on to today's main feature and the star of our book review who really does have a talent.

This week we have a rather delightful dog called Michael, who discovers his very own superpower, which he hopes will raise him to star status . . .

Large book cover. Michael the sausage dog stands in the centre of the cover on top of a red and yellow starry conical shaped half drum. He wears a spangly yellow waistcoat with red bowtie and has an upturned silver toped cane in his paw. Three dogs on each side of the cover looin and up at Micael, who stands in twin spotlights aagainst a pale blue starry backdrop. Michael's name in the title is in large red letters picked out through their centres in two tone yellow bulbs. Terrie Chilvers name and Tim Budgens appear at the bottom of the book in pale blue and yellow respectively.
Image ©

AUTHOR:  Terrie Chilvers


Artwork throughout by: Tim Budgen


Published by: Firefly Press

Publication date for the Paperback: 8 June 2023


Paperback ISBN:   978 - 191 544 4134

Cover price for Paperback: £6.99

KINDLE price: £2.79


Pages: 182


Age range:  6 upwards

Any dogs or cats?  Lots of super talented dogs.




This is quite a short book, so Yes, some as to plot direction and characters.



Thank you to... 

We are exceedingly grateful to Graeme Williams and Karen of the Firefly Press Publishing Team for inviting us to host the final stop.

As ever, our views are our own, and we only share reviews of books we have bought, been given as gifts, or received in exchange for an impartial review.

First and foremost, the books we review are those we like and feel our global readers deserve to know about and that we hope they, their children, friends and students will enjoy.

The plot

Michael is a young and ambitious Dachshund. He lives in Snuffles-by-Sea, in a house he inherited from his Aunt. He is a sausage dog who just knows he is destined for fame and fortune. A superstar in the making. The only thing is, he doesn't know what his superstar ability is. The most famous dog in the town is a Chocolate Labrador called Susan, who won the talent show for balancing peanuts on her nose. Michael knows he can do better. But it isn't until he is in the park one day that he discovers what he is good at. He hears a nearby dog talking to himself about his new fav stick. But when Michael looks, the dog, Stanley Big Dog, has his mouth full of stick. The penny drops and our hero realises he can read minds. But to prove it isn't a one-off fluke, he enlists Stanley to help him practice mind reading. 

One thing leads to another, and Michael and Stanley enter the Snuffles-by-Sea talent show, where the star is none other than Susan. Things don't go as planned; Priscilla the Pug calls Michael out as a fake! When Michael cant read Priscilla's mind, it seems to the audience her allegation is true. But Michael knows it isn't, and for some bizarre reason, a pug's mind is unfathomable and unreadable. Nonetheless, still determined to be a superstar, he calls a meeting in the local cafe called the Pork Chop Café. Quite by chance, Stanley's Uncle, Humphrey Huge Dog, is in town. He happens to be on the hunt for new talent for a review show in Hollywoof, no less.

Now it's fair to say wheels start to turn, and before too long, Michael, aided and hindered by Stanley, are embroiled in attempts to get to Hollywoof, where they hope to find fame and fortune.

Whether they succeed and how much misunderstanding, chaos, and destruction ensues, I'll let you, dear readers, find out for yourselves. Believe me, when I say I wasn't quite expecting the grand showdown at the end. And who knew balancing peanuts on ones nose was such an art. Not I for sure, but then I am just a cat.

So, what did we think?

I love the concept of creatures set in their own human-like worlds, tackling human-like desires, emotions and situations. Not giving anything away here, but Michael has choices to make and rejection to face. Michael learns about more than just seeking stardom. How he rises to the occasion, or otherwise, is well dealt with. 

Life's lessons are always better told and explored through a fun medium, which this book ably does.

The message is clear that each of us has an important part to play, and nobody is an island.

I enjoyed the double act of Michael and Stanley Big Dog. Stanley reminds me of all the happy-go-lucky big dogs out there who get singularly focused on sticks and their food and who sometimes come up short in the good sense department. In fact, which of us can't point to dogs we know that act just like the characters in this book and make us smile and love them even more for it.

So . . . .
Crunch time. 

 A fun, easy-to-read adventure delightfully illustrated by Tim Budgen that will definitely appeal to the younger reader. 

So, if you want a little something different, something to share over a weekend or a long trip, then Michael, the Amazing Mind-Reading Sausage Dog is for you. But whatever you do, don't leave the sausages lying around!

Want to buy a copy? 

To get a copy, please head down to your local independent bookshop. Sticks, sausages, spangly waistcoats and balancing peanuts are optional. There are plenty out there and each shop is just waiting to serve up whatever kind of mystery, fun and adventure you desire.

But hang on, we also have

***** A GIVEAWAY *****

Sorry, it's not pork chops this time. Mrs H has checked her pension pot, and decided that two lucky commenters will each receive a copy of this as a gift from Mrs H and me, subject to there being a delivery service from Amazon to your neighbourhood!

Two names will be pulled from Mrs H's biscuit tin on Monday 19th June 23, so don't delay.  

Terrie Chilvers' web page can be found HERE or type this:


Tim Budgen's web page can be found HERE or type this:


Firefly Press' web page can be found HERE or type this:


And now, the Sunday-into-Monday Selfie. 


We are joining Janet Blue from the Cat on My Head blog for the weekly parade of selfies from all manner of companion creatures, Dogs and Cats, from across the pond and around the globe. 

To go to Janet's blog selfie page, please click this LINK. or type / cut and paste

I shall leave you with a picture of me, sadly minus any pork chops or sausages! 🙂 🙂

Erin lays on the duvet, both hind legs up together, her nose and head nestled touching one white sock. Front leg/arm is extended over top of the two legs, her paw touching the bottom of the picture.


Till laters!




  1. Micheal reminds us of Dalton.,.,we think he's part Dachshund...and maybe Benji is the alter ego for Stanley...biggish and quite goofy at times.
    Sounds like a fun book...though no one here can read minds, LOL!

    Enjoy your Zzzzz time...after you get those assigned chores done:)

    1. Hehe, I can see what you're thinking. As to the chores, well, I've postoned them till it gets cooler.
      Maybe in October 😉

  2. Erin, it's lovely to meet you, and Mrs. H, too! I'm glad there are others who don't care for flying and who might or might not be occasionally messy. Ha. (In my defense, I had been awake since 1:30 AM, so was extra-clumsy with exhaustion.)

    1. More things in life need to be spill proof 😉. The early starts get us too, though Mrs H is often getting up after midnight and in bed by 6pm, so her issue is staying up late.

  3. Your mind reading skills are most amazing sweet Princess, no matter what Mrs H thinks! That book sounds too cute and the cover is most adorable!

    1. Thank you, it's good to be appreciated. Michaels are way way better than mine though. The author has struck exactly the right note with this fun adventure, and Tim Budgen's artwoork is a delight. You have to marvel how they all do it.

  4. Who needs those sausages or pork chops when you can stare at the toes of a real princess?

    1. Shucks, thanks. I suspect Stanley Big Dog would disagree with about the chops and sausages. I guess they're more a doggie thing along with sticks. 😉

  5. Hi ERin
    Awww yes having been owned by Toto the mighty mini Dachshund for 11 1/2 years I know all about their mind reading ability. He was such a fungi and loved his family as long as we followed his orders
    Hugs Cecilia

    1. I understand that a degree of independence and opinion goes with the breed. 😉 The book really made me laugh and I guess many a dog parent will appreciate the humour, especially those like yourselves who have had or have a Sausage Dog.

  6. That book sounds like an entertaining read. Your selfie is so adorable!

    1. Thank you. And yes, it was a lot of fun. I bet the kids, especially those with dogs of their own, will adore Michael. Stanley Big Dog was a true star also, in his very own way! 😉

  7. Sounds like a fun read.

    Have a purrfect day and week. My best to your mom. ♥

  8. I definitely need to add this to my reviews promotions on Twitter this looks amazing!!!!

    Marjorie and Toulouse

    1. Thanks for signing the comment, Marjorie. Thanks for sharing this great kids book too. We really appreciate it.
      ERin & Mrs H

  9. Erin,

    Thanks for pawsing by my site yesterday. I got sucked into behind the scenes technical issues that still have me stumped but am tired of it and am just going to leave it along until I have the energy to tangle with it again. I enjoyed reading your fun, whimsical book review. It had me smiling all the way through. Have a boogietastic week, furriend!

  10. That sounds like a fun book! That is an adorable selfie of you.

    1. It was a great short read. One for the kids really. 🙂

  11. Erin, that is an adorable selfie. You look so relaxed. Maybe you were tired after having to do those chores? :)

    That book sounds like fun, and with a good story line. Love the cover illustration! Hugs to you and Mrs. H!

    1. Thank you. Due to the heatwave we managed to avoid any chores. Instead we been trying to chill and read fun books 🙂

  12. ERin !!

    sneekin a round on free WI FI

    noe data time two waste

    sew thought we'd wave & say HI

    with help frum coppee N paste ♥♥

  13. Your selfie is beautiful, ERin. So sorry you didn't get any pork chops or sausages, however.

    1. I'm not that keen on pork or sausages, though Michael is an absolute dear. 🙂

  14. We hope you are pork chop-less and sausage-less because you already ate them, ERin!

  15. I sure do wish I could read minds.


    On the other paw, Peepers' mind is probably a right mess. Don't wanna have anythin' to do with readin' that. MOUSES!