Reviewer Conny Withay:Operating her own business in office management since 1991, Conny is an avid reader, volunteers reading the Bible to the elderly, and makes handmade jewelry. A cum laude graduate with a degree in art living in the Pacific Northwest, she is married with two sons, two daughter-in-laws, and one granddaughter.
Author: Judy Fridono with Kay Pfaltz
Publisher: Health Communications, Inc.
“In that one moment, I suddenly understood everything: all the frustrating days with her became crystal clear for me as I watched her surf with such empowerment and purpose, doing what she was born to do,” Jody Fridono with Kay Pfaltz writes about her dog in her book, Ricochet: Riding a Wave of Hope with the Dog Who Inspires Millions.
At two hundred and eighty-eight pages, this hardbound targets those who love dogs and value their special bond with mankind. After a foreword by W. Bruce Cameron, prologue, and introduction, there are seventeen chapters with autobiographies, resources, acknowledgements and book club questions. Twenty-five pages are dedicated to color photographs of this particular pooch, her owner, and friends along with those she has helped.
Written as a memoir, Judy Fridono had a rough life being raised in Chicago in the sixties, having been beaten up and diagnosed with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis. Losing her parents at an early age, she found some solace and peace when she agreed to foster eight week old Rina, a golden Labrador mix that would be trained as a service dog.
After sixteen months and a broken heart, she returned Rina to her owners and moved to California. Months later she learned her beloved friend did not make it into the service-dog program, so she got her “once in a lifetime” canine back.
Becoming service-dog trainer, Judy helped birth Ricochet from a litter of ten and the woman’s life changed forever. Raising the pup in a more pro-active positive environment, her lifeline became established by the dog’s ability to assist others.
Known as the dog that “belonged to everyone,” Ricochet found the love of surfing in spite of her fascination with chasing birds. Enjoying what she seemed destined to do, the golden retriever began surfing with paraplegic and autistic children, as well as wounded warriors, veterans with post-traumatic stress, and military families, to help shed their fears.
With low and high points of both author and animal’s life, personal stories bring to light the trials of depression and tribulations of injuries or surgery to the vast accomplishments of bringing total joy along with fund raising for those with disabilities.
As Judy bares her soul of hurt to acceptance, she witnesses how her pets are not only able come to understand and communicate, they help others embrace riding the wave of life. After reading such an uplifting book, dog lovers will pat their “best friend” with more love and gratefulness.
Thanks to the author for furnishing this complimentary book in exchange for a review based on the reader’s opinions.