This is the remarkable story of one endearing dog's search for his purpose over the course of several lives. More than just another charming dog story, "A Dog's Purpose" touches on the universal quest for an answer to life's most basic question: Why are we here?Read more...
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- A Dog's Journey
W. Bruce Cameron
This is the remarkable story of one endearing dog's search for his purpose over the course of several lives. More than just another charming dog story, "A Dog's Purpose" touches on the universal quest for an answer to life's most basic question: Why are we here?
Surprised to find himself reborn as a rambunctious golden-haired puppy after a tragically short life as a stray mutt, Bailey's search for his new life's meaning leads him into the loving arms of 8-year-old Ethan. During their countless adventures Bailey joyously discovers how to be a good dog.
But this life as a beloved family pet is not the end of Bailey's journey. Reborn as a puppy yet again, Bailey wonders--will he ever find his purpose?
Heartwarming, insightful, and often laugh-out-loud funny, "A Dog's Purpose" is not only the emotional and hilarious story of a dog's many lives, but also a dog's-eye commentary on human relationships and the unbreakable bonds between man and man's best friend. This moving and beautifully crafted story teaches us that love never dies, that our true friends are always with us, and that every creature on earth is born with a purpose.
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2010-05-31
- Reviewer: Staff
A tail-wagging three hanky boo-hooer, this delightful fiction debut by newspaper columnist Cameron (8 Simple Rules for Marrying My Daughter) proposes that a dog's purpose might entail being reborn several times. Told in a touching, doggy first-person, this unabashedly sentimental tale introduces Toby, who's rescued by a woman without a license for her rescue operation, so, sadly, Toby ends up euthanized. He's reborn in a puppy mill and after almost dying while left in a hot car, he's saved again by a woman, and he becomes Bailey, a beloved golden retriever, who finds happiness and many adventures. His next intense incarnation is as Ellie, a female German shepherd, a heroic search and rescue dog. But the true purpose of this dog's life doesn't become totally clear until his reincarnation as Buddy, a black Lab. A book for all age groups who admire canine courage, Cameron also successfully captures the essence of a dog's amazing capacity to love and protect. And happily, unlike Marley, this dog stays around for the long haul. (July)
Touching and amusing in equal measure, W. Bruce Cameron’s A Dog’s Purpose examines the love shared by canines and their people from the canine’s point of view. Cameron’s puppy protagonist takes readers on a journey through his life—or rather, lives, because this very special dog lives and dies several times, searching always for his life’s purpose.
Starting off as a pup in a stray’s litter, the young dog has his first interaction with humans in a dog hoarder’s yard. There he learns to love people, but after Animal Control arrives, he suffers the sad fate of dogs deemed “unadoptable.” After being euthanized, he awakes in a new litter with a new life ahead of him, becoming Bailey, the beloved pet of eight-year-old Ethan. Embarking on the most pivotal period of his existence, he learns the satisfaction of being a “good dog” and experiences the most pure, joyful relationship he will have with a human. Bailey not only adores Ethan, he risks his life to protect him, and after years of devotion to his boy, he is sure he has fulfilled his purpose. But when he awakes again in a new—female—canine body, she finds that her journey is not yet finished, and she has more to learn than she realized.
Cameron’s exploration of the world through the eyes of a dog is clever in its humorous touches—Bailey’s conclusions that cats cannot be trusted and horses are completely unreliable are hilarious—and poignant in its depiction of a dog’s innate desire to please humans. The novel is bound to make readers reflect fondly on pets from their pasts, but the book’s greater triumph may lie in changing the way readers think about their current pets.
Having read Cameron’s wonderful book, I’m seeing my little Chloe (a ferret) in the more pure, equal way I looked at animals when I was a child, rather than in the detached fashion that I’m sad to realize has become my habit as an adult. What a gift. A Dog’s Purpose is a beautiful celebration of our four-footed friends’ big hearts.