Bruce Cameron swears he wrote this novel because at the end, the dog doesn’t die. BAH. The dog dies three times! And that’s not a spoiler. It’s the premise of A Dog’s Purpose, A Novel for Humans that Toby-Bailey-Ellie-Bear-Buddy is one dog who reincarnates to find his/her “real purpose” for being born over and over again.
A Dog’s Purpose is written in first-dog point of view, sharing important dogisms, theories and understandings.
“Dogs have important jobs, like barking when the doorbell rings, but cats have no function in a house whatsoever.” Bailey’s dim view of cats extends to horses and ducks. But he likes other dogs.
In the Yard I quickly adjusted to life in the pack, I learned to love Señora and Carlos and Bobby and just when my play with Coco was starting to assume a different, more complex character, we were taken to visit the nice lady in the cool room and the urgency I’d been feeling went completely away.
Bailey, the dog’s second incarnation, finds his true purpose when the little golden retriever escapes a bad situation and is rescued by Ethan’s mom. When Bailey meets ten year old Ethan, doggy angels sing. “I guess I had never bothered to consider that there might be such a thing as a boy, but now that I had found one, I thought it was just about the most wonderful concept in the world.”
Now, this book spent 52 weeks on the New York Times best-seller list and brucecameron.com claims it has the highest reader-ranking of any “recent book on the New York Times best-seller list.” Everyone from Temple Grandin to Alice Walker has endorsed it. And it’s a great book. But to claim that A Dog’s Purpose is not a sad book, is completely disingenuous.
In the end, though, A Dog’s Purpose is like my relationships with dogs. I love them beyond words. And when they must go, I grieve them. But the love exceeds the grief beyond measure.
Deconstructed Bangers and Mash This is one of my favorite Boxing Day recipes but it works for A Dog’s Purpose. I buy the little smokies beef sausages and cook them in the oven at 350 until browned. Then I find the smallest new potatoes I can and scrub them, roast them whole with sea salt, pepper and olive oil. When both are cooked, stack a potato and a sausage on a toothpick.
You could serve hot dogs, but I don’t eat those so I wouldn’t serve them.
Keebler makes a dogbone shaped cracker for people called Scooby Doo! Baked Graham Cracker Snacks. I would serve these with fruit (grapes and berries) and a yogurt and honey dipping sauce. I make the sauce using a container of Greek yogurt, honey to taste and cinnamon. It’s simple and tastes great and is healthy than sour cream and much better with fruit.
Puppy Chow: My family’s favorite Christmas snack. My mother makes several pounds of it in November.
- 9 cups Rice Chex™, Corn Chex™ or Chocolate Chex™ cereal (or combination)
- 1cup semisweet chocolate chips
- 1/2cup peanut butter
- 1/4cup butter or margarine
- 1teaspoon vanilla
- 1 1/2cups powdered sugar
- Place cereal Into large bowl, set aside.
- In 1-quart microwavable bowl, microwave chocolate chips, peanut butter and butter uncovered on High 1 minute; stir. Microwave about 30 seconds longer or until mixture can be stirred smooth. Stir in vanilla. Pour mixture over cereal, stirring until evenly coated. Pour into 2-gallon resealable food-storage plastic bag.
- Add powdered sugar. Seal bag; shake until well coated. Spread on waxed paper to cool. Store in airtight container in refrigerator.
Man of the Hour, Norah Jones (MY FAVORITE!)
Hound Dog, Elvis Presley
Walking the Dog, Rufus Thomas
My Dog and Me, John Hyatt
Black Dog, Led Zeppelin
Won’t You Come Home, Bill Bailey?, Harry Connick, Jr. (and many others)
My Buddy, Frank Sinatra’s version is nice
Beer for My Horses, Toby Keith
Your Song, Ellie Goulding
Really, the dogs are the most important characters, except for Ethan. Dreamworks has a movie in development.
Ethan: Zach Efron or Chord Overstreet (From Glee)
Hannah: Carrie Underwood or Hayden Panettiere
Link to the Book Trailer video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/px_8id3qPeQ“>