Dog Years: A Memoir

Mark Doty, Author . HarperCollins $23.95 (215p) ISBN 978-0-06-117100-0

Award-winning memoirist (Firebird ) and poet (School of the Arts ) Doty explores, with compassion and intelligence, the complicated, loving territory inhabited by devoted dogs and their loyal humans. In 1994, when the author's longtime lover was dying of AIDS, beloved pet Arden kept the surviving partner afloat. A new adoptee, the rambunctious Beau, in his "sloppy dog way," becomes a part of the tribe and carries some of the burden of grief. Doty says Beau "carried something else for me too, which was my will to live." In a time of devastating pain, as well as in happier times, Doty's two dogs are the "secret heroes of my own vitality." The dog characters in the book are irresistible, and the arcs of their lives are delineated with the tenderness and passion of the truly smitten. Arden's quiet nobility and slow decline breaks the heart, while Beau's goofy enthusiasm peaks with youth and mellows in illness. With a marvelous ability to present the pain of mourning with a poet's delicate hand, and an irrepressible instinct for joy, Doty delivers a soulful love story which illuminates no less than the big human mysteries: attachment, death, grief, loyalty, happiness. The book nimbly sidesteps sentimentality and lands squarely on a philosophical, inquisitive tone as intellectually evocative as it is emotionally resonant. (Mar.)

Reviewed on: 03/12/2007
Release date: 03/01/2007
Peanut Press/Palm Reader - 256 pages - 978-0-06-128918-7
Paperback - 267 pages - 978-0-06-123319-7
Paperback - 215 pages - 978-0-06-117101-7
Downloadable Audio - 978-0-06-126251-7
Compact Disc - 5 pages - 978-0-06-123401-9
Ebook - 256 pages - 978-0-06-128969-9
Paperback - 215 pages - 978-0-224-08091-0
Downloadable Audio - 978-0-06-126252-4
Ebook - 256 pages - 978-0-06-184243-6
Open Ebook - 256 pages - 978-0-06-128915-6
Open Ebook - 224 pages - 978-1-4481-1413-9
Show other formats
FORMATS
The Best Books, Emailed Every Week
Tip Sheet!
MORE BOOKS YOU'D LIKE
X