An inside look at the experiences of shelter dogs that is sure to appeal to dog and animal lovers.

RESCUING PENNY JANE

ONE SHELTER VOLUNTEER, COUNTLESS DOGS, AND THE QUEST TO FIND THEM ALL HOMES

Upbeat memoir of a dog lover who shares her insights about homeless dogs and animal shelters.

For years, Boston Globe columnist Sutherland (What Shamu Taught Me About Life, Love, and Marriage: Lessons for People from Animals and Their Trainers, 2008, etc.) has been a volunteer at Boston’s Animal Rescue League, walking, training, and fostering dogs and matching them with prospective new owners. The titular dog was a fearful, undersocialized dog the author and her husband adopted and struggled mightily (and successfully) to turn into a lovable pet. Sutherland’s account of Penny Jane is just one thread in a narrative that includes anecdotes about dozens of dogs, observations about the practices of various animal shelters, and interviews with their operators and with animal behaviorists. Her understanding of shelter dogs—she writes that they are not so much homeless as humanless—shines through on every page. Readers will relish her account of her mastery of Brody, a “jumpy-mouthy” she fostered, and will learn how a puppy can accidentally be turned into an overexcitable, scary, even dangerous dog by life in a shelter. Sutherland is troubled by the transport of shelter dogs across the country, especially of unwanted Chihuahuas from the West to New England, and she has her reservations about spay and neuter programs, which may reduce numbers of strays but don’t help dogs currently in shelters. Further, she voices her concerns about people who abandon their pets and about prospective owners with unrealistic expectations about their adoptees. Nonetheless, this is still essentially an optimistic book, filled with stories about amazing volunteers at caring shelters and positively generous depictions of quirky, often damaged dogs. An appealing close-up photograph of a shelter dog opens each chapter, enticing readers to head for the nearest animal shelter and bring one home.

An inside look at the experiences of shelter dogs that is sure to appeal to dog and animal lovers.

Pub Date: Feb. 21, 2017

ISBN: 978-0-06-237723-4

Page Count: 288

Publisher: Harper/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: Dec. 6, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15, 2016

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If the authors are serious, this is a silly, distasteful book. If they are not, it’s a brilliant satire.

THE 48 LAWS OF POWER

The authors have created a sort of anti-Book of Virtues in this encyclopedic compendium of the ways and means of power.

Everyone wants power and everyone is in a constant duplicitous game to gain more power at the expense of others, according to Greene, a screenwriter and former editor at Esquire (Elffers, a book packager, designed the volume, with its attractive marginalia). We live today as courtiers once did in royal courts: we must appear civil while attempting to crush all those around us. This power game can be played well or poorly, and in these 48 laws culled from the history and wisdom of the world’s greatest power players are the rules that must be followed to win. These laws boil down to being as ruthless, selfish, manipulative, and deceitful as possible. Each law, however, gets its own chapter: “Conceal Your Intentions,” “Always Say Less Than Necessary,” “Pose as a Friend, Work as a Spy,” and so on. Each chapter is conveniently broken down into sections on what happened to those who transgressed or observed the particular law, the key elements in this law, and ways to defensively reverse this law when it’s used against you. Quotations in the margins amplify the lesson being taught. While compelling in the way an auto accident might be, the book is simply nonsense. Rules often contradict each other. We are told, for instance, to “be conspicuous at all cost,” then told to “behave like others.” More seriously, Greene never really defines “power,” and he merely asserts, rather than offers evidence for, the Hobbesian world of all against all in which he insists we live. The world may be like this at times, but often it isn’t. To ask why this is so would be a far more useful project.

If the authors are serious, this is a silly, distasteful book. If they are not, it’s a brilliant satire.

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 1998

ISBN: 0-670-88146-5

Page Count: 430

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 1998

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The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the...

NIGHT

Elie Wiesel spent his early years in a small Transylvanian town as one of four children. 

He was the only one of the family to survive what Francois Maurois, in his introduction, calls the "human holocaust" of the persecution of the Jews, which began with the restrictions, the singularization of the yellow star, the enclosure within the ghetto, and went on to the mass deportations to the ovens of Auschwitz and Buchenwald. There are unforgettable and horrifying scenes here in this spare and sombre memoir of this experience of the hanging of a child, of his first farewell with his father who leaves him an inheritance of a knife and a spoon, and of his last goodbye at Buchenwald his father's corpse is already cold let alone the long months of survival under unconscionable conditions. 

The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the sphere of suffering shared, and in this case extended to the death march itself, there is no spiritual or emotional legacy here to offset any reader reluctance.

Pub Date: Jan. 16, 2006

ISBN: 0374500010

Page Count: 120

Publisher: Hill & Wang

Review Posted Online: Oct. 7, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2006

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