Gina's Reviews > Lost & Found

Lost & Found by Jacqueline Sheehan
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's review
Feb 02, 12

bookshelves: chick-lit, mystery, romance, animals-dogs, book-club, books-i-own-read, challenges-2012, tbr-book-club, new-england, psychology, murder
Read from January 31 to February 02, 2012

I was enchanted by LOST AND FOUND and just about anyone will be able to find something to like within this engaging story. Filled with love, loss, adventure and even a little mystery, this is a story about the ability of the human (and dog) spirit to carry on and just what grief can reduce us to. Full of very real and charming characters, a surprising whodunit storyline and a suspense filled yet ultimately uplifting ending.

As we begin, the main character, Rocky discovers her husband lying lifeless on the bathroom floor. She tries using CPR to revive him but for Bob it's just too late. This forever sets into motion the abrupt transformation of Rocky's world. Unable to continue with her job as a psychologist (can she really help anyone while she's insane with grief?) Rocky cuts off the hair that Bob loved, takes a leave of absence and moves to a small island off the coast of Maine. There, she takes a job as Animal Control Warden. A job of which she knows nothing about but one that's thankfully a million miles from her old life.

Once on the island, Rocky decides to start over and live a life of anonominity. She does not tell anyone of her past as a psychologist or of the death of her husband and her profound grief. She quickly meets many new friends. Tess is a former physical therapist, who has synesthesia which is a special misfiring of the brain that allows her to see and feel things in color, shapes, and sounds. Isaiah, former minister, is her new boss and landlord and he is the first person Rocky tells about her "real" life. Melissa is a young teenage girl who is lost in the mindcontrolling disorder of anorexia. Hill is her archery instructor who she starts to have feelings for but also feels a level of distrust with him. Most importantly of all, Rocky meets Lloyd (Cooper), a black lab who has been shot through the shoulder with an arrow. Rocky is called out on a report of an injured dog and ends up fostering him during his rehab. It is because of Lloyd that Rocky is suddenly drawn to archery and ends up tangled in the mystery of who would shoot such a loving dog and leave him for dead? Rocky begins her investigation into Lloyd's injury and finds out some shocking details about a man obsessed and who won't stop until he has what he wants. Rocky finds her life and the life of Lloyd in danger.

This was a surprisingly great read with characters so real and well done that I didn't want their stories to end. Sheehan has also managed to capture the inner workings of a dog perfectly, giving him a unique personality. I have two labs myself and her descriptions of their loyalty and behaviors exactly described the daily life of a lab. This book has made we want to get to know my dogs better and try to learn their language and appreciate their unconditional love and loyalty. I enjoyed how Sheehan added Lloyds POV in a few chapters. She did a great job coming up with what a dog, particularly a lab, would think and say about the people and events surrounding him. It was nice to read a book with dogs that doesn't have a heartwrenching ending.

Ultimately this is a story about grief and the many ways it can change someone, including dogs. It is a lesson in how to cope with the loss of a loved one and that "grief can be transformed and joy does exist in unexpected places". 4 stars!

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01/31/2012 page 20
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