When Mr Dog Bites, Paperback Book
3 out of 5 (1 rating)


Dylan Mint has Tourette's. His life is a constant battle to keep the bad stuff in - the swearing, the tics, the howling dog that seems to escape whenever he gets stressed.

But a routine visit to the hospital changes everything.

Overhearing a hushed conversation between the doctor and his mum, Dylan discovers that he's going to die in March.

So he makes a list of things he must do before he dies: first, he wants to have real sex with gorgeous Michelle Malloy; second, he's got to find his autistic best friend Amir a new best bud; third, he's got to get his dad back home from the army so they can say goodbye properly.

It's not a long list, but it's ambitious, and he doesn't have much time.

Sometimes you've just got to go for it - no holding back - and see what happens . . . This is the launch of a major new writing talent. Brian Conaghan makes you travel every step of the way in Dylan's shoes, laughing and crying - often at the same time - as Dylan faces the twists and turns of an unfair world with glorious optimism and wit. Shortlisted for The CILIP Carnegie Medal in 2015.


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: General
  • ISBN: 9781408843017

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I started off not liking this at all - I must admit it was the swearing that put me off, and then the teenage boys' frank conversations about sex...I am running a Carnegie Shadowing group, and I wouldn't feel comfortable about recommending this to the year 7 girls at all!However. I really, really like Dylan, the central character, a 16 year old boy with Tourette's (hence some of the swearing, the rest is just teenagers) And I love his tender friendship with 'The bold Amir', and their protection of each other. One of the conversations they have about racism is just perfect: "But how can you be offended by something like skin?....Skin doesn't even talk". It ends with - "I do know it's not normal to hate people because of the colour of their skin." It is a touching and funny story, with fully rounded characters, and I ended up loving it. But I'm discussing it with the year 9s.