A girl called Fred
I first heard of Shaun Ellis when I watched the Natural Geographic documentary on him and his theories about how playing recordings of wolf packs can stop wolf attacks on farm animals. It worked in Poland, but Ellis has no science-biology background so his theories aren’t really accepted. Wolves have always been among my favourite animals, so I guess I was always going to be interested, like the way I’ll always watch those animal rescue shows, even when I know they’re bound to be all overly dramatic and manipulative.
I’ve had this book on my shelves for years now. It was on sale for half-price when I bought it; that’s the only reason I own it in hardback. I much prefer paperbacks, more practical. Since I bought the book it has been made into a film and become even more famous. To be honest the film looked god-awful, so I didn’t bother to watch it. But I always knew I’d eventually read the book, and when better than on a lazy Sunday when I should have been cleaning the apartment?
I’m sure everyone knows the story. A newly married couple decide to get a dog, and so buy a labrador puppy, who grows up into the world’s worst dog. Only of course he isn’t the world’s worst, he simply has some bad habits. Very bad habits that include his destruction of numerous items. But at heart Marley is a sweet good-natured dog whose labrador-ish optimism teachers his owners all about life and, eventually, loss.
We’ve been on a bit of an “animal-human relationship” kick at work lately. I chose this one at random one afternoon. It is the second book that the author Jon Katz wrote about his life after meeting Devon/Orson, the border collie. he has many others detailing his life with other dogs. But Orson was his “once in a lifetime” dog. The one that changes your life.
This is not my usual sort of book. But I guess one of the perks of working in a public library means that you can grab something on impulse just because it crossed your desk. Whatever the reason was I started reading this book, which meant that unless it was atrocious I was most likely going to finish. And finish I did, so you can work it out for yourself.