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The Wrong Dog Dream: A True Romance Hardcover – April 2, 2013
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"And now I love this book, too. Like everything Vandenburgh writes, The Wrong Dog Dream is profound, brilliant, honest, painful, gorgeous, precise and wild, funny and real. She only writes about what matters most: love, family, art, and survival. You don't have to love dogs to enjoy this book, because it is about Life, which is to say, joy, loss, chaos, love, death-- and then those things all over again. It's about her marriage, children, and grandchildren, and their pets; her childhood in a deeply crazy environment, and its pets, her life as an acclaimed artist, her loneliness, salvation in marriage, and pets. This book is about devastation, hope and victory, and it is beautifully written." Anne Lamott
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Top customer reviews
Ultimately, she comes back to California. This is not giving away the plot since-- as always with her novels and books-- the delight is in the journey. In this book she turns the concept of home over and over. She picks up her Magic Eight ball and finds a different answer each time. Home is where you're from. Where there are people live who love you. Where there are plu's (people like us). Where your children are. Where you can work without going crazy. Where you have friends. Where your dogs are safe, by your side.
Go on Vandenburgh's journey with Thiebaud and Whistler.
So you'll likely miss the second half, which is a venomous diatribe against the authoress's neighbor and the neighbor's greyhound. It's way over the top. Here's the spoiler: Her dog Thiebaud attacked the neighbor's greyhound not once but twice, each time causing serious vet bills, which the County Animal Control Officer told her she had to pay. So you have this doglover, a woman truly in love with her pet, who has to come to terms with the established fact that her dog is a vicious animal. If you buy her book, and read it --- which I don't recommend, but have at it if you want -- you'll be introduced to this really precarious psycho(il)logical situation where , in the telling of this story (which goes on and on with a lot of bizarre twists and turns), she creates an alternate reality about the neighbor couple, and their greyhound. In this alternate reality, the neighbors (not next door neighbors; people who live a block or so away on the way to the off-leash area) are people to be vilified; and she turns her writerly wrath on them with a vengeance. At one point, though, reality seeps in and she is standing there saying to herself something like "Oh no my dog attacked their dog and this time I SAW it!" , but then she's back to railing about just how awful the neighbors are.
I'm from that neighborhood where all this happened -- in fact I'm one of the neighbors, and that was my Greyhound, Scrabble, that got gored -- Scrabble RIP but from old age, not from Thiebaud's aggression -- and if the statute of limitations hadn't run out a couple years ago, I would be filing a defamation suit not writing an Amazon review. But it's okay -- nobody needed a lawsuit, and it wouldn't have stuck anyway because apparently Jane didn't sell a whole lot of books. See, I read this thing in 2016 from a "Free!" pile on a streetcorner; it came out in 2013 (the Statute of Limiations for libel is a year.) And of course while I was reading her book, I was getting more and more incensed; but after I read the whole thing, I felt sorry for her -- compassion is the word that comes to mind --- that she got it all soooo twisted. I hope she tried again, and got a genuinely good dog -- three's a charm.
Most recent customer reviews
The beautiful cover portrait in Rembrandtian shades of black and brown is a dog. This looks like a dog book, and it is one.Read more
My dog of many years recently passed away, and this book was like a balm.Read more
Author: Jane Vandenburgh