Author: Jo Coudert

Publisher: Harlequin Enterprises, Ltd., Don Mills, Ont., Canada

ISBN-13: 978-0-373-89230-3


Click Here To Purchase The Dog Who Healed a Family: And Other True Animal Stories That Warm the Heart & Touch the Soul

 

This collection of true short stories will make you laugh and cry. Both heart-warming and poignant in turn, veteran animal writer Jo Coudert has gathered together, in The Dog Who Healed a Family: And Other True Animal Stories That Warm the Heart & Touch the Soul, eighteen of her endearing, amusing and inspiring stories of special animal and human relationships that have pushed the boundaries of care and nurturing, and led to extraordinary bonds of love. Of the stories, seven were originally published in The Reader’s Digest, seven originally appeared in Woman’s Day, one first appeared in McCall’s, and one was originally published in Family Circle.

 

Each story is written as a simple narrative account of the development of a relationship between either one or more domesticated or wild animals and one or more humans. The settings are diverse, ranging from a hermitage for contemplative nuns set on a hillside in Sebastopol, California to the home of a couple in Johnstown, New York. The animals range across the animal kingdoms from the slightly exotic species, such as snakes (there’s one catchily named Windshield Viper) and birds (in one instance, a cygnet called Porcelain, whose name quickly gets shortened to Porcey), to the more conventional pets, such as dogs, which are pictured in a variety of locations, including one which is relocated cross country, gathering toys and gifts on the way, by means of a “puppy express” constituted of volunteers from local animal shelters all across America.

 

Each story is as endearing as the next, with all revealing Jo Coudert’s compassion and empathy for both human and animal kind. As she writes in her afterword to this compact and insightful book, “[i]t doesn’t feel the least bit threatening to be boundlessly loved by a dog or cat, and the dog or cat is more than content to be boundlessly loved in return… a human has carte blanche to love a pet at the top of his bent, just as fully, generously, wholeheartedly as he is capable of, and that is a superbly satisfying thing—to live out one’s feelings without reserve.”

 

The stories are written in a lively, accessible style, and few deal with death in any form. And, even when they do, it is done in such a discrete manner that even the most sensitive reader will not be unduly upset. Underlying each story there is a lesson to be learnt, but, once again, Jo Coudert’s writing shows her mastery of this medium in that she gently intimates to what conclusion each story might lead, rather than hammering it home.

 

Demanding little of the reader apart from a loving heart, these stories are ideal gems with which to snuggle up on a cold winter’s night, and so light as to be the perfect companion for those who are not in the best of health. In short, if you love animals, you will love this book, and even if you don’t, you might find that The Dog Who Healed a Family: And Other True Animal Stories That Warm the Heart & Touch the Soul will make you repent your miscreant ways :).         


Click Here To Purchase The Dog Who Healed a Family: And Other True Animal Stories That Warm the Heart & Touch the Soul