I’m surprised Goodreads hasn’t sent me a ‘You Suck’ notice. Yes, Goodreads. I’m aware that I am now FOUR books behind on my reading challenge. I’m behind on a lot of things here lately.
I should have held one of those ‘Guess How Many Jellybeans Are In The Jar’ contest when it came to books. How many books of my You Bought It, You Read It Mission would have animals as main characters? I’m even surprising myself.
A poignant and unforgettable tale of love, loss, and moving on . . . with the help of one not-so-little dog
Rocky’s husband Bob was just forty-two when she discovered him lying cold and lifeless on the bathroom floor . . . and Rocky’s world changed forever. Quitting her job, chopping off all her hair, she leaves Massachusetts—reinventing her past and taking a job as Animal Control Warden on Peak’s Island, a tiny speck off the coast of Maine and a million miles away from everything she’s lost. She leaves her career as a psychologist behind, only to find friendship with a woman whose brain misfires in the most wonderful way and a young girl who is trying to disappear. Rocky, a quirky and fallible character, discovers the healing process to be agonizingly slow.
But then she meets Lloyd.
A large black Labrador retriever, Lloyd enters Rocky’s world with a primitive arrow sticking out of his shoulder. And so begins a remarkable friendship between a wounded woman and a wounded, lovable beast. As the unraveling mystery of Lloyd’s accident and missing owner leads Rocky to an archery instructor who draws her in even as she finds every reason to mistrust him, she discovers the life-altering revelation that grief can be transformed . . . and joy does exist in unexpected places.
I loved this book from the first few pages. As you read above, her husband dies immediately in the book. You can sense that this grief filled woman is right on the edge of insanity … and then she does something that crosses that line and keeps on going! I have to admit … I laughed. I’m sure other readers were disturbed, but I couldn’t help myself. It was a sold deal after that and I was committed to this book and the woman tampering with lunacy!
And of course, I loved Lloyd the black lab. There’s even a few chapters written in the dog’s perspective. I have to admit, the character I wanted to know more and more about was the dog. Everyone in this book is interesting though, with lots of skeletons in their closets that desperately need to be aired out. There’s not a dull person or moment.
And as usual… I cried my eyes out at some parts. Books with animals become more emotionally wrenching the older I get.
There are two issues I had along while reading this book, and they are veterinary related. In the beginning she said she could tell a cat was a female because of her small head, but when she first starts describing the cat she says it is a calico. That should have been the giveaway that the cat was a female. It is EXTREMELY rare that a calico is a male. Play the lottery, the odds are better than a calico being male.
Second, there’s an incident where a tom cat is trapped and neutered. The cat was assumed to be a stray, but then the owner came forward. She mentions that the belly was shaved from the surgery. Feline castration doesn’t go into the abdomen unless the cat was cryptorchid.
Sorry! I know! This is why no one wants to discuss animal books with veterinary staff!
Picture This is the sequel to this book and I think I will give it a try once I clear my bookshelf of all of these books. Sheehan is also the author of Now and Then, which hints to some dog dialogue of its own.
This one is definitely something I will share with the coworkers.