a big little life: Book Review/Comments

December 20, 2010 at 10:01 am 16 comments

 

A wonderful friend asked me one day, “Have you read this?” and showed me a copy of this hard cover book with a beautiful Golden Retriever’s photo on the cover. I hadn’t, and she instantly offered to let me borrow it. I tucked the book into a bubble-envelope as I lugged it here and there, for I never wanted anything to happen to her treasured possession. You see, it is a signed copy inscribed: To Nancy–in memory of Cody, Katie, and Pepper. Dean Koontz 4.7.10

Dean Koontz’s story about his dog Trixie is brilliantly told. A BIG LITTLE LIFE: A MEMOIR OF A JOYFUL DOG had me laughing quietly, crying unabashedly, and relating deeply to the love people have for the furry friends that grace our lives.

“This book will change your life,” my friend Nancy said. And it has. I look at my almost 11-year-old Golden Lab Rex and see the times he waded into the frothing surf at the beach, chased a tennis ball through the crackle of fallen leaves, pranced like a rabbit through the snow in the mountains an hour from our home. Like Dean Koontz, I have many memories that I draw upon, for as a character in his novel The Darkest Evening of the Year says:

“Dogs’ lives are short, too short, but you know that going in. You know the pain is coming, you’re going to lose a dog, and there’s going to be great anguish, so you live fully in the moment with her, never fail to share her joy or delight in her innocence, because you can’t support the illusion that a dog can be your lifelong companion. There’s such beauty in the hard honesty of that, in accepting and giving love while always aware it comes with an unbearable price. Maybe loving dogs is a way we do penance for all the other illusions we allow ourselves and for the mistakes we make because of those illusions.”

Thank you, Dean Koontz, for opening my eyes to even more of the joy and love we share with our dogs. And thank you, Nancy, for entrusting the care of your precious book to me to read.  

You can find A BIG LITTLE LIFE on Dean Koontz’s website: http://bit.ly/9LarIU

Postnote: I had this post scheduled to send today and didn’t realize how relevant it would be to me. My mother passed away last night. Sudden, yet expected. A person is never ready for the ache in the heart. This is true of losing a mother, or a beloved pet. I thank Dean again for showing me that all that we love is precious in this world and to enjoy every moment that we have together.

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Entry filed under: Reviews/Comments on Books.

Do Dogs Experience Holiday Stress? Puppy Size

16 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Donna Collins Tinsley  |  December 28, 2010 at 7:33 am

    I am so sorry to hear about your loss. I was late checking my emails, but will be praying for you.
    The first Christmas is the hardest without your mother.

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    • 2. bjtaylorblog  |  December 29, 2010 at 10:30 pm

      Donna, thank you. Am with family this week and loving every minute of being with loved ones. Thank you for the sweet condolences.

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  • 3. Linda Anderson  |  December 22, 2010 at 11:57 am

    Loved this post and so sorry for the loss of your Mom.

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    • 4. bjtaylorblog  |  December 23, 2010 at 7:44 am

      Thank you, Linda. That means a lot to me.

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  • 5. Catherine  |  December 21, 2010 at 8:38 am

    Oh, BJ, my heart hurts for you. Losing a mother is one of those unbearable losses we have to bear at some point. I can hardly think about losing mine. I enjoyed this post and thought about my sweet dog, Chase, passing away two months ago. We love, we lose–human and animal.

    My prayers and thoughts are with you.

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    • 6. bjtaylorblog  |  December 21, 2010 at 9:54 am

      Cath, thank you for the kind words. Chase was a wonderful dog to you and your family. I know you miss him. My mom was a caring and giving soul. I will miss her too.

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  • 7. Julie Garmon  |  December 21, 2010 at 6:19 am

    Oh, B.J. How perfect. How poignant.

    My love.

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    • 8. bjtaylorblog  |  December 21, 2010 at 9:55 am

      Julie, it’s amazing how this post about Dean Koontz’s book touched me just when I needed it. Love to you.

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  • 9. Jean Stewart  |  December 20, 2010 at 3:29 pm

    Oh dear BJ, I’m so sorry and just loved that you had the inspiration for this post before you lost your mom–how ironic and what a beautiful tribute to her. Know I’m grieving for you, Roomie.

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    • 10. bjtaylorblog  |  December 21, 2010 at 9:56 am

      Dear Jean, thank you for calling this morning and for talking to me about Mom. Friends are priceless at this time. Love to you.

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  • 11. Rita Garcia  |  December 20, 2010 at 10:57 am

    No one should ever lose a mom! My mother passes away almost twenty years ago and I miss her every day. A mom leaves behind such wonderful, sweet and magical memories. The special person you are is a wonderful tribute to your mom. My thoughts and prayers are with you. Love and Hugs, Rita

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    • 12. bjtaylorblog  |  December 21, 2010 at 9:58 am

      Rita, my father went to heaven in 1997 and I miss him every day. I feel his love for me all the time. I know Mom is there with him now and I can feel her love for me too. That’s a huge comfort. Thank you for writing and for your kind words. Hugs, B.J.

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  • 13. caren gittleman  |  December 20, 2010 at 10:43 am

    I am so deeply deeply sorry about the loss of your mother. We lost my father-in-law Nov 4 (also somewhat expected) but it doesn’t make it hurt any less….my prayers to you and your family.
    Your review was beautiful and I will do my best to check that book out!
    ((((hugs))))

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    • 14. bjtaylorblog  |  December 21, 2010 at 9:59 am

      Caren, thank you for the sympathy and may I also say how sad I am you lost your father-in-law such a short time ago. Hugs back to you.

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  • 15. Yvonne  |  December 20, 2010 at 10:14 am

    Thank you for the post. So sorry to hear about your mom’s passing. My prayers are going up on your behalf, and I do pray that you will be comforted by the Holy Spirit in this time.

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    • 16. bjtaylorblog  |  December 21, 2010 at 10:00 am

      Yvonne, Thank you so much for the prayers. The Holy Spirit is comforting me every minute and I can feel Mom’s arms around me all the way from heaven. Thanks for writing.

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