Sunday, April 5, 2009

Book Review: My Llife With George, by Judith Summers

There is always a fine balance to be struck when writing a good 'dog book'. It's too easy to write exclusively about the dog and fail to allow the reader to appreciate the entire context of the story.

This title avoids that trap by carefully weaving between the author's personal life - in particular the men who she attempts to integrate into the life she shares with her son, Joshua, and her troubled Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, George.

For me, there is no doubt that the author is responsible for many of her dog's personality issues, but no more so than the thousands of similar dog-owners who, rightly or wrongly, treat their dogs in the same anthropormophic manner as she treats George. However, in terms of the physical ailments and accidents that George suffers, that is just bad luck - something which runs throughout the story in many different ways.

The story provides a fascinating glimpse into a life where the dog is king, and where all subjects must ultimately bend to the king's will. It will make you laugh, it may even irritate you at times and perhaps, when dealing with the issues of the loss of a loved one, make you sad, but there is no doubt that, one way or another, it will leave a lasting impression on you, if only to leave you fretting at not having adequate pet-insurance cover. A fascinating read!

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