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Good Dog. Stay. Hardcover – November 20, 2007

114 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Pulitzer Prize–winning columnist and novelist Quindlen has recently met with tremendous success in the realm of short nonfiction with an inspirational and motivational bent. Recounting the life and death of her beloved Labrador retriever, Beau, she follows the same pattern. Quindlen masters a calm, thoughtful radio-essay style of delivery that nicely fits the introspective nature of her material, which includes some powerful ruminations on aging and mortality. Yet as a 45-minute stand-alone offering, the recording lacks the weight of a dramatic center, since Quindlen devotes such a large chunk of the fleeting allotment of time to setting the stage on the front end and offering reflection in conclusion. Somehow, it seems as though a two-for-one arrangement similar to the 2005 audiobook release pairing Quindlen's Being Perfect and A Short Guide to a Happy Life might have allowed for a broader and more fully realized sense of her unique gift for deeply personalized narrative.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

ANNA QUINDLEN  is the author of five bestselling novels (Rise and Shine, Blessings, Object Lessons, One True Thing, Black and Blue), and six nonfiction books (Being Perfect, Loud & Clear, A Short Guide to a Happy Life, Living Out Loud, Thinking Out Loud, How Reading Changed My Life). She has also written two children's books (The Tree That Came to Stay, Happily Ever After). Her New York Times column "Public and Private" won the Pulitzer Prize in 1992. Her column now appears every other week in Newsweek.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 96 pages
  • Publisher: Random House; 1 edition (November 20, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1400067138
  • ISBN-13: 978-1400067138
  • Product Dimensions: 5.6 x 0.6 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (114 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #517,564 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Anna Quindlen is the author of three bestselling novels, Object Lessons, One True Thing and Black and Blue, and three non-fiction books, Living Out Loud, Thinking Out Loud and A Short Guide to a Happy Life. Her New York Times column 'Public and Private' won a Pulitzer Prize in 1992. She is currently a columnist for Newsweek and lives with her husband and children in New York.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

72 of 77 people found the following review helpful By Richard Cumming on November 21, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Anna Quindlen has written a succulent tribute to her beloved black Lab, Beau. It's funny, and fond, sentimentally delightful, a fitting honor to a dog who lived a long life.

There isn't any whining here. She makes you laugh as she recalls the pup who spent so many happy days and when he grew old could still get excited about the scent of pork roast in the oven.

When it was his time to go they said goodbye with dignity. The many photos of dogs enhance this pithy homage to a wonderful dog.

Quindlen is not adequately appreciated for her sense of humor. She is one of our leading literary stylists. This book will be treasured by many dog lovers.
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75 of 88 people found the following review helpful By Richard Piatt on November 28, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I purchased this book to be quite honest because the picture of Beau on the cover reminded me so much of my dog Shelly who I had to put down 1-1/2 years ago. I don't know exactly what I hoped for when I purchased this book other than perhaps a loving, funny, retrospective on the life and times of a Black Lab. I guess to a certain extent that is exactly what this book is however there is so little text between all those photos that I can't help but feel that I've been cheated. First off the book is small. Then about half of the pages (or more!) are photos. The text is double spaced. If this had been printed more like any other book it would have taken up perhaps 20 pages total. Somehow, that is just not enough reminiscing for me! I want to hear more of Beau's adventures. I want to hear more about how he aged and how he dealt with Bea (the Quindlen's Yellow Lab companion for Beau). I want more! What little is there is moderately interesting but it lacks the 'wisdom learned through experience' I had imagined I might find between the pages. Overall the book was a disappointment (obviously) and not one I'm likely to read again. But I sure would have loved a chance to say hi to Beau regardless of how bad his book is!
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful By L. D Sears on December 2, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I have to be quite honest. I read this whole "book" at my local bookstore and did not spend a dime on it! Part of the problem is that, though it is selling as a book, what it really is is a quite lovely, funny and moving essay about some of Ms. Quindlen's life with Beau, her Lab. I own a Lab and feel about mine the same way Ms. Quindlen does about hers. Like other reviewers here, I do wish that she would expand this essay into a real book--and that I would buy. But for now, I can recommend this book to all dog owners--and certainly to any of you who enjoy your Lab as much as I do mine. Read it, for sure--the purchasing of it, quite honestly, I have to leave up to you.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Rick Tome on November 20, 2007
Format: Hardcover
A wise, warm, and compelling little book that is as much about a family as it is about the dog they loved. Quindlen poignantly captures the obscure, seemingly mundane, events in life that are only fully appreciated in retrospect. In truth, this is a finely crafted essay on how we learn to let go of those we cherish most.
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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Julie Neal VINE VOICE on November 24, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
In my world, an Anna Quindlen book about a dog is about as good as it gets.

This slim hardback, which includes charming photos of dozens of dogs, tells the story of Quindlen's black Labrador, Beau, about his life and death. It's a love story to dogs in general, and Beau in particular. Anyone who knows dogs will see truth in every paragraph, from the absurdity of praising basic bodily functions during housetraining to the ever-present wagging tail. She captures the essence of what a dog is. "When you say "Sit!" a cat rises and stalks out of the room. Most dogs will fall back on their haunches, vibrating slightly, their liquid eyes locked on yours."

The book traces the Quindlen children growing up as Beau grows older. In the end the grown kids make the final decision that it was cruel to keep their ailing pal alive. When the vet makes the final house call. Ms Quindlen has her arms around Beau's neck, whispering in his ear. "Yes, yes, you are the man," I murmured, "you are the best dog, yes, everything's going to be all right."

It took me a half hour to read, and my shirt is still damp from crying. I hugged my chocolate Lab and wrote this review. This is a great book.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Samuel Clemens on November 20, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I couldn't wait for this book to come out. I got it from the store first thing today and it's even better than I expected. Anna Quindlen has a fantastic writing style and a way of drawing you deep into her thoughts; so much so that you become overwhelmed with feeling. I love the way she relates the love for her dog with real life philosophies. Just reading this book made me appreciate all the loved ones in my life even more (including my dog). At less than a hundred pages long it's a very quick and enjoyable read. It's now my favorite of all her works.
Another good book of philosophy is Understanding: Train of Thought.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Patricia Kramer on March 14, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I read this book at breakfast this morning. There are lots of pictures of very cute dogs, so it is a very quick read. I think I should have known what it was about though before I gave it to my aged mother. Quindlen's comparison of the journey of aging dogs and their owners to a person aging gracefully might be better appreciated by those earlier on in the journey.

There is a wonderful passage in the book that I wish every parent would read. Of course as a dog lover, I am biased.

"Sometimes people tell me that their children are begging for a puppy, and that they won't be fooled into going along because they know, they know that the kids say they will train the dog, walk the dog, feed and brush and tend the dog, but they won't. Well, of course they won't. Any parents who believe that they themselves will not wind up walking the dog most, if not all, of the time-especially in a downpour or a sleet storm-are parents who will also believe that there is no homework over the winter break and that the cigarettes belonged to someone else. For children, the point of have a dog is something like the point of having a mother and father. Our job is not to do but to be, not to act but to exist. We are bedrock, scenery, landscape, to be often ignored and then clung to during difficult or frightening or, occasionally, happy times. My mom, my dad, my dog, my home, immutable, to leave and then to return to at will and leave again."
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