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Sophie: The Incredible True Story of the Castaway Dog Hardcover – January 24, 2012


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Sophie: The Incredible True Story of the Castaway Dog + Comet's Tale: How the Dog I Rescued Saved My Life
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Da Capo Lifelong Books; 1 edition (January 24, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0738214671
  • ISBN-13: 978-0738214672
  • Product Dimensions: 1.1 x 6.2 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #648,412 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

When an Australian blue-heeler dog was found on the mostly uninhabited island of St. Bees, in the shark-infested waters of the Great Barrier Reef, national park rangers wondered how she came to be there. They spent months trying to capture her, slowly winning her trust, unaware that she’d fallen overboard from a boat on a family outing. Australian journalist Pearse recounts the story of how Sophie survived for five months in the wild as a castaway on the island before allowing herself to be rescued. Pearse speculates what the journey must have been like for the three-year-old dog, alone in the ocean, swimming six nautical miles from where she’d fallen overboard. Pearse also recalls how Sophie’s owner, a teenage girl, Bridget, met the puppy, fell in love, and raised Sophie until the day she was lost to the family. Pearse interweaves research on the bonds between animals and their owners, including an interview with animal expert Temple Grandin. Dog lovers will appreciate this heartwarming story of animal survival and the ties between humans and animals. --Vanessa Bush

Review

Publishers Weekly, 10/3/11
“A tender, delightful story of how a cosseted pup turned into a hardy, intrepid—and very lucky—‘supercanine,’ this book will endear itself to dog and adventure lovers everywhere.”

Kirkus Reviews,
11/1/11
“This story of canine loyalty and the power of human-animal relationships is as charming as its blue-furred heroine. A treat for dog lovers.”

Temple Grandin, author of Animals in Translation and Animals Make Us Human, August 29, 2011
“It was amazing how this dog swam to a remote island and survived to be reunited with her family. All dog lovers should read this wonderful book.”

Library Journal
“This emotionally uplifting saga of a Queensland, Australia, family who lost overboard their beloved blue heeler dog, Sophie, while on a weekend boating trip reflects the strength and loyal spirit of these people and canines….Animal lovers and survival story enthusiasts will enjoy this riveting, true store, told with strong local flavor.”

Booklist, 1/1 issue
“Dog lovers will appreciate this heartwarming story of animal survival and the ties between humans and animals.”

American Way, February 2012
“A heartwarming tale of the power of love and perseverance.”

Shelf-Awareness, 2/3/12
“Both a hero’s journey and a testament to the bond between humans and their beloved dogs…a compelling tale of hope that any dog lovers, whether they have suffered the heart-wrenching disappearance of a pet or not, will appreciate.”
 
Seattle Kennel Club. 2/1/12
Sophie packs every bit of real-life drama with an absorbing Australian accent and a bit of refreshing good fortune to boot…remarkable and crisp narrative, Sophie nourishes as well as celebrates with a richly detailed mix of passion, inspiration and hope you won’t soon forget.”

 

Cesar’s Way, March/April 2012
“Her story will encourage you.”
 
Richmond Times Dispatch, 3/4/12
“A miracle…and one that will touch not only readers devoted to their pets but also anyone who has known the healing power of love.”
 
Hudson Valley News, 3/1/12
“[A] miraculous story of a brave dog who survived insurmountable odds.”
 
Oprah.com, 3/16/12
“For dog owners who have ever gazed into the adoring eyes of their pet and felt like there were no bounds to what this creature would do for them...this book will confirm that hunch.”

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Customer Reviews

This is a good book to read and a hard one to read.
Linda
I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to read a great dog story.
Mark Zarubi
It was heartbreaking. i was inspired with her story of survival.
Melissa R. Hrycauk

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By J. E. Van Doren on May 3, 2012
Format: Hardcover
I would have liked to have given the book more stars because it's a great story, but I found myself constantly skipping over the mundane conversations of the family and the author's suppositions of what was going through the dog's mind. This definitely needed a good editing. But the story itself is a captivating one with a great outcome. Of particular interest was to learn about these islands in Australia and the currents surrounding them, giving the reader an even greater appreciation for Sophie's resilience and the Griffiths' good fortune to get her back. She's a truly remarkable dog.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By skippy on April 11, 2012
Format: Hardcover
As an owner of two Australian cattle dogs I was happy to receive this as a gift. I soon realized that it should be about a third as long and sold as a children's book. It is a maudlin, overwritten account of an interesting story. The author takes entirely too much time in describing the perfect family and their perfect life. She then goes on way too long about the dangers of the ocean that Sophie faced. This book is filled with suppositions of what the dog was thinking and how it might have been acting when no one can ever know what happened. This is speculation written as fact.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Sharon E. Jensen on February 11, 2012
Format: Hardcover
I ran across this book at the library and on a lark checked it out. I'd heard about the amazing dog Sophie who survived being stranded on an island and was curious to know more. The book turned out to be way better than I expected. It's written by a young, very enthusiastic writer, Emma Pearse. If I were to have any sort of criticism it would be that it's too Pollyanna a world that she created for the Griffith family. But who knows, I could be wrong, maybe Australians are that enthusiastic and happy 24/7.

As for the way she builds the story, I didn't find, liked the previous reviewer, that the story took too long to get into. I write myself and I recognized the effort she was making to build a solid background and give as in depth a picture of the situation as she could. If it was over the top a little, it was endearingly so. An animal lover to the nth degree myself, I couldn't wait to get into the meat of the book, when the dog actually disappears. I knew so few of the details that I just couldn't put the book down and read it avidly until I was through. And of course the tears come, you can't help that. I thought it was a wonderful, wonderful story and can't wait for the movie!!!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Marie McMillen on December 28, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The true story of the unbeliveable survival of Sophie makes a great story but it is not well written in my opinion.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Little Judy on September 18, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Confession: I am not a dog fanatic, so I was not the ideal reader. Sophie's story is worth telling, but it would have benefited from some serious pruning along the way. "Repetitious" is a good one-word description.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By HealthyJames on September 15, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
No doubt Sophie the dog is a super-dog with an incredible story. Unfortunately much of the book is about the owner(s) and went off track about their lives in a style that did not sound very authentic.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By By Susan Schutz on May 27, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The story of Sophie and her survival is quite amazing; unfortunately, her disappearance becomes a backstory to the pain and sorrow of her human companions. I got a bit upset with their self-absorption and didn't quite believe the circumstances that led to Sophie going overboard. If the true story were to be told, I think Sophie's owners would not just have cruised the waters where she disappeared, but explored all the islands on foot, not from the vantage point of their sailboat. When they did go ashore with friends for a picnic, sometime after Sophie disappeared, her "presence" was felt but not pursued. They had already given up on her and she, apparently, did not seek them out. The end of the book is refreshing...in that Sophie finally makes it home. If home is where your heart is...
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By barnbum on April 21, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
It is a heartwarming story about the loyalty of a dog. It was a little bit of a slow read as author gave too many details about dog's family - seemed like she told things over and over again, but I still enjoyed the book. Amazing story of how this dog survived and was reunited with his owners.
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