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Top 6 Bestselling Dog Books

The spring is coming soon, but not just yet, which means there’s still time before the outdoor work begins for snuggling up by the fire with your furry best friend and a good book. If you are unsure what to read, this list has the bestsellers of all time.

#1 A Dog’s Purpose, by W. Bruce Cameron

A Dog's Purpose is a 2010 novel written by American W. Bruce Cameron. The novel stayed a New York Times bestseller for forty-nine weeks. The book has been released in a new form recently. The book chronicles a dog's journey through four lives via reincarnation and how he looks for his purpose through each of his lives.

Four puppies are born to a feral dog who keeps them hidden in a den scooped out underneath the black roots of a tree. The mother dog trains them to fear humans but they are all caught and put in a large fenced-in yard with many other dogs. A kind woman with long, white hair names the hero, Toby. He finally has to be put down because he is wounded in a fight.

In the second reincarnation, the hero is a Golden Retriever named Bailey. He loves Ethan, the boy he lives with, deeply. In the summer Ethan visits his grandparents in the country. There is a girl named Hannah who lives down the road and Ethan falls in love with her. There is a bad boy in the neighbourhood named Todd whom Bailey discovers setting fire to Ethan's house. When Ethan goes away to college, Hannah promises to write every day but Ethan discovers she has a new boyfriend when he returns on a visit. Bailey gets sick and has to be put down.

In the third reincarnation, the puppy is a female German Shepherd named Ellie who becomes a search and rescue dog. When she knows she's near death, she doesn't believe that she'll come back again because she's done everything a dog can do.

In this last reincarnation, the puppy is a Black Lab and he meets up with his beloved owner Ethan again as an old man. Ethan used to have a sweetheart Hannah who he didn't marry with and Buddy as Bailey brings the two of them together by smell. He realizes that he has fulfilled his purpose. The main character remembers people and events from lifetime to lifetime.

#2 Lassie Come-Home, by Eric Knight

“Lassie Come Home”, written by Eric Knight, is a heartwarming story about the loyalty of a dog to his family. Since publishing it has remained one of the favourite books for children. The book was written in 1940 and has been translated into numerous different languages and editions, thanks to the immense popularity of this moving story about the loyal pet.

A Yorkshire, England, a family is forced to sell their beloved collie, Lassie, to pay their bills during a time of economic crisis and unemployment. The son is especially devastated to lose his companion who devotedly met him each afternoon when he came home from school. Lassie's new owner, a wealthy duke, takes her to Scotland. However, she escapes and travels approximately one thousand miles south to return home.Her journey requires her to traverse challenging natural obstacles such as rivers and snow drifts. Lassie encounters both helpful and harmful humans and animals and suffers injuries. Her determination, perseverance, and loyalty result in a reunion which foreshadows better times for Lassie and her chosen masters.

The book author, Eric Knight, spent his childhood in Yorkshire, where the story is based as well as a beginning and the end of the plot. The author was pointing out that the rough climate of that region in England was the main factor in making the people there more resilient and eager to fight. The dogs of that area have similar qualities, always remaining faithful to their owner and ready for helping him.

#3 Cujo, by Stephen King

Cujo, a Stephen King horror classic published in 1981, tells the story of a family dog turned rabid amid the seemingly mundane lives of two of Castle Rock, Maine’s inhabitants. This town is a frequent setting for King. The novel won the British Fantasy Award in 1982.

Briefly about the book: The Cambers' once-friendly St. Bernard turns into a killer after being bitten by a rabid bat. Donna Trenton's husband is in New York trying to contain a disastrous ad campaign. Feeling abandoned by her workaholic husband, who is frequently out of town, Donna Trenton embarks on an affair with a local handyman. Left to fend for herself, she takes her ailing Pinto to Joe Cambers' garage for repairs only to be trapped with her son Tad in the sweltering car by the monstrous dog.

Some might argue it’s not really a horror novel at all having no supernatural elements, and for much of the story the focus is on the messy lives of the characters. The slow degeneration of a beloved dog due to rabies is both heartbreaking and terrifying, which makes the book horrifying enough to be a horror story. The book is a compelling piece of fiction that remains one of King's most popular stories.

#4 The Call of the Wild, by Jack London

The Call of the Wild is a short adventure novel by Jack London published in 1903 and set in Yukon, Canada, during the 1890s Klondike Gold Rush, when strong sledge dogs were in high demand.

Buck, a physically impressive dog, is living the good life in California when he gets stolen and put into dog slavery. For him, this means pulling a ridiculously heavy sled through miles and miles of frozen ice with little or nothing to eat and frequent beatings.

Because he's basically the definition of a domestic dog, Buck's out of his element until he begins to adapt to his surroundings and learn from the other dogs. Buck also starts having strange dreams about the primitive days of dogs and men, before the advent of cities or houses or culture.

Buck becomes involved in a struggle for power with another dog, Spitz. They end up fighting and Buck wins, taking over as leader of the sled dog team. The team changes human management and the new people don't seem to be very competent. They’re bad drivers and end up killing everyone, including themselves. Fortunately, Buck's saved by a kind man named John Thornton moments before the group died in an icy river.

Buck becomes attached to Thornton and even saves his life several times. Buck sets off on a journey with his new master and several other men.

At the end of Call of the Wild, Thornton is killed by the Yeehat tribe, and Buck gets a heaping helping of revenge on the people that murder his master. Buck's now free to run with the wild dog packs...but only on the condition that he is the leader.

#5 Marley and Me, by John Grogan

Marley & Me: Life and Love with the World's Worst Dog is a New York Times bestselling autobiographical book by journalist John Grogan, published in 2005.

John and Jenny were just beginning their life together. They were young and in love, with a perfect little house and not a care in the world. Then they brought home Marley, a wiggly yellow furball of a puppy. Life would never be the same.

Marley quickly grew into a barreling, ninety-seven-pound steamroller of a Labrador retriever, a dog like no other. He crashed through screen doors, gouged through drywall, flung drool on guests, stole women's undergarments, and ate nearly everything he could get his mouth around, including couches and fine jewellery. Obedience school did no good—Marley was expelled. Neither did the tranquillizers the veterinarian prescribed for him with the admonishment, "Don't hesitate to use these."

And yet Marley's heart was pure. Just as he joyfully refused any limits on his behaviour, his love and loyalty were boundless, too. Marley shared the couple's joy at their first pregnancy and their heartbreak over the miscarriage. He was there when babies finally arrived and when the screams of a seventeen-year-old stabbing victim pierced the night. Marley shut down a public beach and managed to land a role in a feature-length movie, always winning hearts as he made a mess of things. Through it all, he remained steadfast, a model of devotion, even when his family was at its wit's end. Unconditional love, they would learn, comes in many forms.

#6 The Art of Racing in the Rain, by Garth Stein

The Art of Racing in the Rain is a 2008 novel by American author and film producer Garth Stein — told from a dog's point of view. The novel was a New York Times bestseller for 156 weeks.

The novel begins at the end of Enzo's life. He is looking back at some of the most critical moments of his existence as a dog and philosophizing about what he has learned on his journey so far. Enzo is old and ill but his spirits are buoyed by the lovely memories he has collected along the way. And even though he is accepting that his time is near, Enzo is nonetheless disappointed that he cannot take his memories into the next life with him. Enzo is convinced that he will be reincarnated as a man, with thumbs. Being a man is Enzo's ultimate dream and there is nothing more important to Enzo than leaving this life and beginning the next life as smoothly and as soon as possible.

Enzo narration of the story of their lives features several philosophical monologues in which Enzo uses racing as a metaphor for life. Enzo has learned everything he knows from Denny Swift. Denny hopes to be a champion Formula One someday and Enzo shares this dream.

One of the most valuable skills that a race driver can have is the ability to win a race in the rain. Enzo loves television, especially the educational aspects of The Weather Channel. Enzo thinks deeply about the world and his understanding of the truly important aspects of life makes his point of view both refreshing and illuminating.

Enzo and Denny are a family until Denny marries Eve and baby Zoë is born. Enzo comes to enjoy his role as protector and confidant to the little family until Eve suddenly becomes ill. Enzo watches as Denny's entire world is turned upside down and he stands to lose everything. Through everything that happens to Denny and his family, Enzo is the observant witness who shares his perspective with the reader while telling the story of his journey with his best friend.

Written by Eha Laneman

Erick Marchello – BMX STAR – le Cow-Boy de Saint-Tropez

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