Roger (Big Trouble, by Dave Barry)Learn about the other dogs on the list.
What could be a cloyingly cute literary device straight out of a creative writing class is made funny, effective, and compelling with the agile comic gifts of Dave Barry. Barry’s first foray into full-length fiction is the ridiculously funny Miami-set crime story Big Trouble. The point of view shifts among a number of characters involved some way in a crime gone wrong—including a dog. Breaking up the unfolding, intertwined action are palate cleansers about a dog named Roger—the “result of generations of hasty, unplanned dog sex,” (he’s a mutt). He’s got his own story to live and his own battle to fight: trying to stop a rogue toad that steals food out of his bowl every morning. You really feel for Roger; this kind of dopey, regular dog. One wishes they could reach into the book, shoo the toad away, and let Roger have a full meal for once.