(photo from Goodreads)
Judy sounds like she was quite a remarkable dog: A liver-and-white English pointer born in a Shanghai kennel, she became a canine hero in the midst of World War II. This intelligent and brave dog was adored by all the Allied servicemen she came across, and in return, she saved their lives several times over.
Taken under the wing of the Royal Navy, Judy lived much of her life on a gunboat called the Gnat. While the Navy patrolled the waters, the brave and intelligent dog kept her eye out for the Japanese, both airborne and in the river. When there seemed to be danger, she would bark, pace, and whine, alerting her shipmates to trouble. When the boat capsized, it seemed like Judy would be done for - but this girl had the 9 lives of a cat!
Eventually, Judy found herself a canine Prisoner of War, nearly starving in a Japanese prison camp. Though the conditions in which they lived were absolutely horrifying, Judy represented hope - something to look forward to - to the men in the camp, and she was taken care of by most everyone there. By simply being her wonderful self, this dog probably gave many men something to live for.
Judy on the deck of the gunboat - such a good girl! (photo from Wiki)
Though I loved the heroine of this true story - Judy - and all of the servicemen who cared for her, it was not exactly a fun book to read. The events were shocking and depressing, and many chapters ended by saying something like, "But this was only the beginning of the horror for Judy and her comrades..." It wasn't by any means uplifting. I also noticed that Judy kind of faded into the background - it didn't seem to be the dog's story, but rather the brave men on the boat and in the prison camp. And that's just fine, but I fell rather in love with Judy, and I wanted to hear more about her.
Overall, I would recommend this book to dog lovers and history buffs alike! Though it was not necessarily a happy story, it was an inspiring read nonetheless.
This book was provided to me by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. I received no other compensation. All opinions are my own.