Jena Henry's Reviews > Someone to Look Up To

Someone to Look Up To by Jean Gill
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it was amazing
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“Sometimes love isn’t enough.”- Sirius, the dog
Author Gill puts her storytelling prowess on full display with her mesmerizing and evocative story of Sirius, “Izzie”, the Pyrenean Mountain Dog. Because this book is written in the first person by this perceptive dog, I asked my own dog to help me with this review.

I told Oakley about Sirius and recapped the story of his search for a satisfying and meaningful life. As I began to tell her, she said, “Oh my, a Pyrenean is an enormous dog, twice as big as me.” She then stretched out on the couch so I could see how big she was. She rolled over on her back so I could rub her belly while I told her more about Sirius.

“Yes, Sirius was a large, fluffy white dog, bred as a sheep dog and able to handle the weather and conditions of French mountain life.” I was going to tell Oakley that Sirius had been born to champions, but Oakley is a champion mutt and I didn’t want to her hurt her feelings. I continued, “When he was eight weeks old, Sirius was Chosen, that’s the word he used, by a young couple. He lived with them for about a year, and did his best to train them. They divorced and he went to live with another family with young children. His size and young age, his sheepdog skills and his independent and proud nature made him a poor fit for young kids.”

Oakley turned, so that I could reach and scratch her ears. I again decided to edit the story, the part where Sirius spends time at an animal shelter. Our family had rescued Oakley from a shelter, so I didn’t want to remind her of her sad past. Thinking of Sirius and the other dogs on the concrete slab of the pound made me grab Oakley’s face and look into her beautiful brown eyes, as I hugged her.

The shelter contacted Sirius’ breeder and she took Sirius back to the snow covered mountains where he was born, but not to the life that he wanted. At this point, my dog snuggled even closer to me and fell asleep. So, I wrote the rest of this review myself.

My dog is joyous and fun-loving, that’s what got her into trouble with her first three owners. But as Sirius tells his life story, we learn that he is wise, contemplative, a philosopher. Author Gill conveys the dog’s thoughts in a compelling and compassionate way. One of the most beautiful parts of the book is when the dogs bark at night to share and affirm their stories.
If you love dogs, animals, or you like to consider life, then you will love this book and not be able to put it down. (Small spoiler alert- this is one dog book where the dog doesn’t die at the end!)

“Love is the starting point.”- Sirius, the dog

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Reading Progress

Finished Reading
Finished Reading
April 17, 2018 – Shelved

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