A Dog's Purpose
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473 of 487 people found the following review helpful
on July 6, 2010
I received a publisher's advance copy of W. Bruce Cameron's first novel, "A Dog's Purpose". In a word? Magnificent. OK, two words. Brilliant. Actually three. Soul.
Bruce Cameron has brought forth a magnificent, touching piece of a soul's journey through life in search of purpose and meaning. At times hilarious and yet other times heart breaking, Bruce brilliantly weaves a story of a dog and its quest that is told with such heart and humanity that anyone who has ever had a dog (or any pet , for that matter) feels that this truly is how they see us and the world in which they live.
The humor is real and effortless. You will find yourself laughing out loud. You will also cry. Real tears born out of your life's memories of pets past and the essential intertwining of souls that exists in no other relationship.
That bond (from the dog's perspective) is what brings the true love in this novel to life.
Though many dream of writing that one great novel, the difference here is that Bruce Cameron has done it right out of the gate and I have a feeling that there is plenty more where that came from. An essential, five star must read.
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163 of 167 people found the following review helpful
on July 17, 2010
Dog lovers will absolutely love this book. The author masterfully captures what many of us would imagine to be the thought processes of our dogs, and makes the reader think about the role we play in our pets' lives, for good and for bad. While the book has its uplifting moments, make sure to have some tissues nearby as there are many, many tearful moments in the story of this dog's numerous lives. Lest anyone think that this is yet another book in the growing dog channeling genre, rest assured that this book is much more than that. This is a book that will make you think not only about the purpose of a dog's life, but the purpose of life in general.
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204 of 211 people found the following review helpful
A Dog's Purpose is one of the most fantastic, wonderful books I've ever read. Many have tried to write from the animal's perspective, but Bruce Cameron has hit it head on. I've never experienced so many emotions while reading one book. I laughed, I cried, I cheered.

Put in the context of what is going on in my life right now, I was just waiting for A Dog's Purpose. My son and his wife had to have their 15-year-old golden retriever put to sleep after a long and full life, a short time ago. Even though I was 1,300 miles away from them at the time, I went through the pain and the grief. Right now I'm visiting with him and his wife and we started talking about them getting another dog. Initial reluctance moved on to checking out rescue web sites to starting to make a list of potential new puppies. And then they found THE ONE. And so while I was reading A Dog's Purpose, Tucker came to live with my son and his wife. I can see in Tucker's face the knowledge, the understanding and the love that is embodied in A Dog's Purpose.

My son is reading A Dog's Purpose right now and I know he is finding comfort in his old friend's passing in those pages and joy in the new, exuberant life that has joined their household.
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46 of 51 people found the following review helpful
on June 9, 2011
A dog does not choose his circumstances. He accepts whatever may come his way. Born to royalty or on the side of a road; he doesn't question his lot. He makes the best of it. Cameron spins one of the most interesting and beautiful novels on how a dog sees the world.

When some people say that dogs don't have a soul....look into those eyes and know that it is impossible for that to be true. True love and vast wisdom exude from those soulful eyes. Eyes that may have seen many lives.

This is a novel of acceptance, loyalty,survival and greater than anything....true love that never ends.

Scientific research has told us that a dog does not remember, that we humanize them to serve our own needs. The research also breaks down every behavior into a rational explanation. All well and good. Science has its place, but can't explain why the Tornado dog from Alabama, separated from his family dragged himself back to the site of his destroyed house towing 2 broken legs.

Read this book more than once, buy as many copies as you can get, and give one to each person who knows that a dog is much more than the sum of scientific research.

I bought 10 copies and plan on buying more.

Sit down in a comfortable chair with your best friend next to you, and don't get up until you have finished this most touching story. Then give your best friend a big hug, his favorite treat and a good long belly rub.

Marcy Blume
Midlothian, VA 23113
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46 of 51 people found the following review helpful
I started this book last night, planning to read just a couple of chapters before going to sleep. I ended up reading it all before I put it down. If you are a dog person - I have six - you must read this book. I was afraid it would have the typical sad ending, but instead it is uplifting and comforting. Yes, there is much sadness, but there is also much laughter and joy. You won't be disappointed!
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53 of 60 people found the following review helpful
on July 8, 2010
This is an amazing book. Who would think that a dog could be reincarnated? W. Bruce Cameron did. Who would think a laugh with the first sentence would lead into the life of a dog, who begins his multiple lives as a puppy? What is his purpose? He tries, with many amusing events to do what humans are telling him. It is a Bit Dangerous, though. My daughter walked into the room, picked it up, read 2 pages and asked "May I borrow this?" Plan your holiday gifts now, defend your copy and enjoy a fantastic journey!
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37 of 42 people found the following review helpful
on July 7, 2010
I starting reading this book when it arrived on my Kindle yesterday and never put it down. The story made me laugh and occasionally put a lump in my throat remembering past pets of my own. I was relieved the ending was not sad. This pup's opinion of life and humans is so easily and beautifully explained from his point of view. I finished the book last night knowing it takes so little to have a profound and positive effect on all who surround our lives. Animals and humans alike, have feelings that can so easily be altered with a simple smile or kind word. The ASPCA should headline this book in it's next newsletter! I hope the book is a huge success and a fun read for all.
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
on April 20, 2011
My fiancé is dying of cancer. She has been incapable of moving out of bed for the last month so I choose a book to read to her. Our dog, Bear, makes us laugh often so thought a book from a dog's point of view would provide a little comic relief from our challenging reality. Not only did we LOL often, I cried on several occasions. I do not believe I have cried since I was six. I have certainly never been so touched by a book. Bear appeared uncannily during certain passages as if on cue. Sometime with a toy and sometimes with a look, as if to say 'I understand and am here for you'. Maybe it was the moment. Maybe it way the book. Maybe it was our dog, Bear. Whatever it was, it was perfect.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on July 11, 2010
This book is amazing! Once I started, I had to finish and didn't put the book down till I did. Through his canine narrators, Cameron tells one of the greatest love stories I have ever read. If you love dogs, please read this book.
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23 of 27 people found the following review helpful
on February 16, 2011
I guess I'm going to be the grinch of the reviewers posted here, despite my credentials as a life-long dog worshipper and novel reader. Mr. Cameron came up with a wonderful premise: instead of "All Dogs Go to Heaven" as the animated film claimed some years back, he assumes that "All dogs return to earth for subsequent lives." I have wondered about that ever since my early teens. His choice to write from the dog's viewpoint created many difficulties for him, however. How come the dog seems to understand certain things about humans and their habits, but not others? The first life we are exposed to in the book seems to be this dog's first life ever, yet later on, he remembers details he learned from past-life experiences. Since the book's hero canine has an immortal soul, as I hope is the case in real life, where was it before the book opens? Or inbetween lives? Not all problems like these are touched on satisfactorily in the book, and while perhaps they are minor points, they nag at me. But the big problem is this: It seems as if "A Dog's Purpose" is, in the first 179 pages, a rough draft of the novel's starting idea. Not only are the families with whom the dog lives several lives not very interesting or credible, but the dog's own personality did not really win me over until this half of the novel neared its climax. The writing style in this long section almost seems to be the work of an author who himself is in an early life, without the skills he will develop via experience. Then comes Chapter 18 and the rest of the book, 140 pages of powerful emotions, brilliant writing, lovable characters both human and animal, and great reader satisfaction. My advice: Start with Chapter 18. You wiil miss a few references to the dog's earlier lives, but you'll catch on quick, and you'll fall in love with the dog, and after the final page you can turn to the front and read about the earlier life experiences, much less annoyed by slow passages, uninteresting developments, negative moments, and dull personalities, both human and canine. I almost gave up on this book twice, but the friend who gifted me with it admitted the first half was a slog, but assured me the conclusion was worth the journey. He was right, as usual for him. From page one to page 179, I had to force myself to read a handful of pages per day. For the rest of the way, I had to force myself to put the book aside and go to work or sleep.
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