Sunday, January 4, 2009

(1.) A Three Dog Life by Abigal Thomas

I can only hope that every book I read in 2009 is as good as the first book of the year.
The blurb on the front of the book, from Stephen King, says "The Best Memoir I have ever read. This book is a punch to the heart. Read it."
And the man was not kidding. A Three Dog Life is the memoir of a woman who is coping with tragedy. Coping with the physical damage caused to her husband when he is hit by a car while walking their dog, Harry. Abby is also coping with the personality transformation caused by the accident. The man she married has disappeared. Left in his place is a cruel, paranoid, psychotic man who is safe only in a hospital setting with professionals who know how to handle him.
The book tells Abigal's story. Starting with the accident & the few horrible weeks after. And then it tells the story of her new reality. Where the only warm body she has to go home to is Harry, their dog. Eventually Abby adds another dog to her family. Here she is talking about Rosie, who was orphaned on 9/11.
"Whoever the man was, he must have loved her as I do, he trained her, and when I
tell her to sit and she sits, I swear I can feel his ghost hovering
nearby. I want to tell the people who loved him that is dog is part of a
family now, that she is doing fine."
Abby then leaves the city where she has spent the majority of her life to be closer to her husband. And it is there that she finds the third dog to add to her family. But life in the country is a challenge for her. She is used to the hustle & bustle of the city. She is used to being surrounded by people. The noises of the country are frightening to a single woman. And, oh boy can I relate to this. This is why I have slept with music playing ever since I moved out of my parents house. I laughed out loud when I read this, because I can SOOOO relate.
"The noises are real and no doubt have a logical explanation, but
at midnight logic is not my companion, so the solution is to keep my imagination
in check."
I can not state enough how much I enjoyed this book. I cried when Abby cried, I rejoiced when Abby rejoiced & I felt comfort when Abby felt comfort. I have never so easily empathized with an author. I could feel her grow & adapt with what life has thrown her way. I could feel through the pages as she went from profound grief to comfortable acceptance.
A Three Dog Life is the most fabulous little memoir & I think it will go to one of my top ten favorites. And most certainly one of the best of the year.


Mimi said...

I saw it on the shelf at the store and wondered.

Why I Read...

I remember the carefree summer days when I used to ride my bike to the public library to pick out new books. I would go almost daily to find books to read. I read to learn. I read to explore the world. I read to escape. I read because not reading is not an option.

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