Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Free Days With George: Learning Life's Little Lessons from One Very Big Dog” as Want to Read:
Free Days With George: Learning Life's Little Lessons from One Very Big Dog
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Free Days With George: Learning Life's Little Lessons from One Very Big Dog

4.42  ·  Rating details ·  962 Ratings  ·  203 Reviews
A heartwarming, true story about George, a rescue dog who helps his owner rediscover love and happiness. Marley & Me meets Tuesdays with Morrie and The Art of Racing in the Rain--get your tissues ready, animal lovers!

After Colin Campbell went on a short business trip abroad, he returned home to discover his wife of many years had moved out. No explanations. No second
Paperback, 224 pages
Published May 3rd 2016 by Anchor Canada (first published May 12th 2015)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Free Days With George, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Colin Campbell Thanks so much for reading the book, and for asking about more..! I am happy to say George is alive and well and we have had lots more adventures from…moreThanks so much for reading the book, and for asking about more..! I am happy to say George is alive and well and we have had lots more adventures from where the book ended. I am still in the middle of the process of promoting Free Days With George but am starting to put some notes together about our next project.... stay tuned..!(less)
Colin Campbell Anna - Bruce is a very talented and successful author, and this is my first book so I wouldn't want to make comparisons - that said, George, and our…moreAnna - Bruce is a very talented and successful author, and this is my first book so I wouldn't want to make comparisons - that said, George, and our story together is pretty heartfelt and unique - I hope you will enjoy it! Colin Campbell(less)

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Rating details
Sort: Default
Ann Marie (Lit·Wit·Wine·Dine)
Full disclosure: I own a Newf. Therefore, there was little to no chance this book was getting less than five stars no matter what. But I'm happy to say those five stars are well-deserved! I read this book in less than a day. It's a fast-feel good read and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Colin Campbell was a man who'd hit a rough spot in life. His wife, the love of his life, left him suddenly and with no explanation. Truly devastated, he buried himself in work and picked up a few bad habits. He was still
Nov 06, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: four-legs, memoir
”A free day is when you spend a whole day doing the things you love to do - like building sand castles, flying kites or going swimming. And when you do those things with the people you love who love you, you don’t grow old that day. It’s a free day.”

This charmer of a book certainly expresses the greater-than-fond memories that Colin Campbell shared with his big dog, George. I’d also call it a thank you for giving him a reason to enjoy life again. That’s funny to say because the life typical
Apr 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Sometimes I feel like I should come equipped with a sign…

Warning: I can talk about my dogs for hours. Be careful what you ask!

Naturally, reading this story made me think about my own two Newfs so am I going to talk about them now? You bet. And I have no shame.

When a friend brought this book to my attention, I was beyond excited to find a story about a Newf and his person. Colin Campbell is not a writer by profession but he doesn’t need to be because his love and devotion toward George is beautif
Looking for a"feel good" book? This is an uplifting novel about finding the joy in life. It is about the bond between dog and man, about the true nature of dogs, about discovering what is truly important in life and cherishing it. Colin Campbell also introduces us to "Free Days". Free Days are a concept taught to him by his grandfather, a WWll hero. I won't give away the full details about this delightful idea, but after reading just the prologue, and certainly after reading the book, you will f ...more
Rebecca McNutt
I won a copy of this book in a Goodreads giveaway.

Free Days with George is unlike any other dog story. It was funny, hopeful, interesting and nostalgic, with an unlikely but strong friendship. Colin's wife has left him, and he finds solace in a huge but friendly Newfoundland dog who happens to love surfing. Combining this with intriguing WWII photographs, this book is an unforgettable memoir and a story that anyone will enjoy reading.
John Mousseau
Mar 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great story that will resonate well with anyone whose rescued a dog or is an animal lover in general. We all know the impact pets have on our lives and this book captures that magic beautifully. Destined to be a best seller!
Jun 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I am a 16-year veteran independent bookseller; I read constantly. Critically, for myself, customers & the reading public. "Free Days with George" is in hardcover currently & without pause, I highly-recommend this memoir to anyone! Colin Campbell's writing is crisp, unsentimental & yet brimming with the joy & pain that is human existence- now & in our past generations. Indeed, "Free Days with George" proves that it is not the destination but the journey which truly matters in ...more
Elyse Walters
Apr 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
I'm in Florida visiting -home is Northern California. I've been to a few beaches here in Saint Petersburg, but yesterday was especially fun when we spent the entire day at the only dog beach with my daughters Chihuahua named 'Lunchbox'... and a couple of her friends. Dogs of all sizes were running happy, some great ocean swimmers, others looking for lunch handouts.
Families were relaxing under rainbow colored umbrellas, or some like me, were walking the long strip of the beach in my swim suit so
Sarah Doherty
Oct 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This was such a heart-warming and unique book. Whether you are a dog-owner/dog-lover or not, this is one to be enjoyed. Can't believe this is Campbell's first book! I thoroughly enjoyed every bit of it and did not want the stories of George to end.
David Arnold
Mar 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Move over Marley and Me; Free Days with George is the next great story for readers of all ages. No matter what your upbringing, age or demographic, this story will start you thinking about what a "free day" would mean to you.
The story makes you think about what are the most important thing in your life! What are you missing and what are you going to do to bring them into your life? It could be as simple as finding more time for you and your spouse, your family or taking your dog for a walk. The
May 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Simply Awesome!!! I loved this book! It was so heartwarming and inspiring. I wasn't to sure at first when I read about the surfing but this book is about so much more! If you are an animal lover this is a book you need to read! I would love to meet George
Inspirational on how a man and a dog came together to move on after traumatic experiences in both their lives...and learned what it meant to appreciate 'free days'.
Elisabeth Manley
Oct 06, 2018 rated it liked it
3.5. This was a fluffy (pun intended) and uplifting read about a man and his great big Newfoundland dog George. It follows a year’s period in which the author goes through an unexpected divorce, saves a rescue dog, moves to California for work, and proceeds to be saved right back by George’s love. The happiest and most exciting parts are definitely the doggy obedience school part and the surfing competition part. I read the second half of the book with my own furry girl beside me and couldn’t st ...more
Jun 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Living at one of the rare off leash dog beaches I LOVED this story. Everyday my border collies run and play with dozens of dogs, including a big newfy. This book is sweet, touching, with laugh out loud funny moments. yes, I am glossing over colins life and focusing on George, because George has the power to heal. The photos will melt any beach loving animal owner to the quick! Delightful book!
Teena in Toronto
Apr 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: canadian
I love reading books about animals and that's why this one caught my eye.

When Colin's marriage unexpectedly ended, he was heartbroken and became depressed. A friend eventually suggested that he get a dog to keep him company. He found a 140-pound Newfoundland Landseer in need of home on a pet finder site online and adopted him and named him George. George had had a traumatic life up to that point and wasn't very trusting, especially of men. Over time, the two helped heal each other.

When Colin was
Sep 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I would give it 4.5 stars if that was a choice. It was very good but the writing is pretty basic. The story however is fantastic. I think animals have incredible healing powers for all that ails humans. Thanks Colin for introducing us to a wonderful dog!
Christine (Padfoot's Library)
As a dog lover, when I first heard about this book at the RHC Blogger Preview, I knew instantly then and there that it was going to be a must-read for me. They also mentioned to us at the preview that George surfs and I thought that was so fascinating. To begin with, Colin begins his story with defining what he means by a "Free Day" - a free day is doing something with someone you love and on that day, you don't grow old, it is a free day. I love this concept so much because the book definitely ...more
Peggy Tibbetts
May 03, 2016 rated it it was amazing
In what has become a common thread in most man-meets-dog memoirs, Campbell’s wife walked out on him and George the dog saves his life. What distinguishes this dogoir from the others is well – the dog. When the two first met George was a clumsy, fearful, year-old Landseer Newfoundland who had been mistreated and had never known a real home. Luckily Campbell had done his homework about these exceptional black & white beauties and never doubted that underneath George’s 140-lb protective shell l ...more
Aug 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
My favourite line in this book is near the end: "George lived brightly and beautifully -- every day."

What's not to love about that? That is how dogs go about their days and it's a little -- yet big -- piece of wisdom we should glean from our furry friends. It wasn't hard to fall in love with George. He hadn't been done right by early in his life, but as is the beauty of dogs, he didn't let that shape him. He moved past that and dove into what life had to offer, tail wagging and offering up kisse
Apr 05, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: All ages
Lucky to get my hands on an advance copy of this fun book. It is that fun loving feel good read that keeps you smiling through to the end. Colin Campbell has a real knack with words, he paints each scene and paw-like tale in a way that makes you fall more in love with their companionship. I can''t wait to see how their story flourishes, as it is truly a feel good tale that everyone can relate too. Definitely a Disney inspired movie in the making!
Mar 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
See Ruthie Arnold's full review she said it best. Free Days With George: Learning Life's Little Lessons from One Very Big Dog is a fabulous read! Take the time and enjoy this book. Follow freedayswithgeorge on Facebook, and Colintown on Instargram, the treat of this book is that it keeps on giving.

One more month and the doctor said I will be able to start typing again :) and I will review the books I read until then , thanks Ruthie <3
Debbie Miller
Jun 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Beautifully written heartfelt story about the healing power of love. This story will pull at your heartstrings and remind you to appreciate each and every day we are able to share with loved ones, including our furry friends who provide so much unconditional love…
Lori Hoetzel
Feb 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I really love this book.
Well I don't want to spoil it for the people who haven't read it.
I'm almost done reading it and I think people should read it.
It's really good.
Jun 03, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dec-15
Our book club book :)
Loved it!
Sep 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. Adorable.
Judy Decaigny
Jun 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
3 stars for being about a dog. 4 stars because the dog was a rescue (Landseer Newfoundland at that).
A fun, uplifting and wonderful read.
Tony Petry
Dec 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing
A very good book, messes with your emotions which I really like. Recommended for any dog lover or someone who is battling depression.
Kathy Mcdonald
Jun 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful book. Inspiring and very moving.
Kate Cranston
Jun 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Read it in two days, and I'm a busy lady. Such a great read, I shed a few tears, but mostly smiled a whole lot. Thanks for this wonderful story.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Creatures of the Rock: A Veterinarian's Adventures in Newfoundland
  • Open Secret (Bern Fortin mystery, #2)
  • Hope Is Within Reach: Overcoming the Challenges of Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Cherish the Light: One Woman's Journey from Darkness to Light
  • Northern Light: The Enduring Mystery of Tom Thomson and the Woman Who Loved Him
  • Accusation
  • No Bull Beauty: Cutting Through the Crap:  A No-Nonsense Guide to Holistic Beauty and Wellness
  • Bailey's Story (A Dog's Purpose Puppy Tales)
  • The Glass
  • Matadora
  • Unbowed: Revised 2018
  • A Tale of Two Besties (Hello Giggles)
  • Leon's Lair
  • Hooper Finds a Family: A Hurricane Katrina Dog's Survival Tale
  • Lazar's Mission (Jack Lazar Series, #3)
  • Muzzled (Kate Turner, DVM #1)
  • From There To Here: A Novel of Discovery
  • Judy: A Dog In A Million
Colin has enjoyed a 20 year marketing career in both Canada and the United States working with some of North America's leading Agencies, sport organizations and consumer brands. A passionate athlete, and animal advocate, Colin is thrilled to have worked with Random House Doubleday Canada on Free Days with George When not writing, you can find Colin playing hockey at a local rink, or at the beach s ...more