What constitutes a good read? Sometimes when I'm reading, I'll catch myself burning with anger. Other times I'm nearly whimpering with sorrow. Or I'll laugh out loud, surprising my cat and waking the dogs. That's when I know I'm engaged in what I'm reading. That's when I know a book has not only entertained me but made me feel. It's not always pleasant. I often hear from our customers that they don't want to read any books about animals that end in death. That narrows the choices in animal literature-especially memoir-to a small trickle. I understand their feelings completely. The sorrow is sometimes too much. But then again, why are we so reluctant to read a book that will touch us to that extent? Isn't it healthy to gain insight into our own emotions through reading?
I try to choose books for my online and mobile bookstore that will not only entertain but educate and enlighten as well. Some of the books I've recommended will make you redden with anger. And some of the horrors or sorrows recounted will stay with you, embedded in your mind. Some books may even keep you awake at night. But I promise you, the experience of being engaged, emotionally and intellectually, is worth a sleepless night! (Just please don't call me at 3:00am to complain.)
Here are a few books that have entertained, educated, and enlightened me so far this year. (The asterisks refer to reviews posted under "What's New"on www.booksforanimallovers.com). Go to the site to read more about those titles in particular, but others are available as well.)
THE ART OF RACING IN THE RAIN For straight-up dog profundity and raising of the hackles over humans inhumanity, this is a winner. But also a comforting story of mortality and immortality.
THE STORY OF EDGAR SAWTELLE An intense tale that I found riveting and thoroughly engrossing. I even read portions to Katrina. She agreed.
*PAINTED HORSES *THE MOUNTAINTOP SCHOOL FOR DOGS *PAW AND ORDER (because we all need some healthy doses of fun sometimes!)
*PART WILD *CATS & DAUGHTERS *WAR OF THE WHALES *LAST CHAIN ON BILLIE *HAACHI AND LITTLE B