Customer Reviews for

I Thought You Were Dead

Average Rating 4.5
( 19 )
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  • Posted November 9, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Wonderful Read

    Wow. This book was such an amazing mix of things and a great surprise. While it opens with an off the wall humor that continues in spots throughout, it also carries into a much deeper place. Personal discovery, family, friendship, love, heartache, loyalty and so much more. I think we've all had a 'Stella' in our lives and reading about she and Paul is so touching. Plus all the things Paul is going through in his life. He's a sweet, kind, funny, yet sometimes morose and confused guy who takes a while making that journey to growth into a more developed person. With his family, his girlfriend, his friends and others commenting along the way, most notably Stella. They just have a really great rapport that made me smile and other times laugh out loud, or tear up. And this leads to some hard twists coming before finally things turning around in his life and with his family. I won't sugar coat, there is a tragedy in here that just nearly killed me, but it does have a happy ending so it's all worth it. The sweetest and most poignant being in the final pages. Give this one a try, you won't be sorry.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 12, 2010

    Compelling realism infused with humor

    Loveable loser Paul Gustavson is forced to re-evaluate his own life when his father has a debilitating stroke, and Paul is asked to help his father learn to communicate again. "I Thought You Were Dead" features the long-standing relationship between Paul and his golden lab/German shepherd mix, Stella.
    This relationship seems to be the most successful of Paul's life. He is a divorced work-from-home writer whose strained relationship with his family is OK because he lives so far away from them. Paul is currently dating Tamsen, who is much hotter than Paul, and she is also dating another man.
    Fifteen-year-old Stella has continence issues and Paul has to life her up and down so she can get around, but her mind is sharp, as shown by the frequent conversations she and Paul have. Stella advises Paul on all areas of his life, and knows him better than any human ever could. She also accompanies Paul to the dive bar where he hangs out daily. When Paul comes home she greets him with, "I thought you were dead," as dogs have no sense of time.
    When Paul's father suffers a stroke he flies home to be with his family. The stroke is much worse than Paul feared, with his father having no communicative ability. A system is set up where the only way Paul's father can communicate is by pushing a button signifying "yes" or "no" on a computer set up close to his hospital-grade bed in the main level of Paul's parents' house. It is determined that Paul can help his father rehabilitate by being the one who draws his father out via internet conversations.
    These conversations turn out to be therapeutic for Paul after some rough going early on.
    Paul's relationship with Tamsen is getting harder for him to deal with, mainly because he fears Tamsen's other boyfriend is going to give her more what she wants than Paul can. He begins drawing away from her, thinking that will eventually make her happier.
    Then another tragedy strikes. And this one sends Paul into a depression, realizing his life will never be the same. It also forces him to deal with relationships and real-life issues that he has been skirting for a while.
    This story would be very difficult to read, if not for the consistent humor the author infuses into the book. A truly compelling, realistically flawed main character, offset by a not so realistic but completely lovable talking dog make this a story you don't want to put down.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 3, 2012

    What a pleasant surprise!

    This book had been recommended to me by a friend who is a dog-lover as well as a bookworm. I have never owned a dog, so I wasn't quite sure what to expect. What a pleasant, multifaceted story, one that I recommend to anyone who needs reassurance that there are good people in the world, or encouragement to reconsider uncomfortable family dynamics. The protagonist's most trusted friend is his aging dog Stella, but the protagonist eventually finds his own "heroic" place in his family and in his community. I was sorry when the story ended.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 15, 2010

    A really good read

    This book didn't end the way I thought when I was in the first chapter. It is one of those easy reads and great for a lousy weather day and pretty darn good for any day.
    I'm not a great reader by any means but this book is one that I really got in to and finished it in record time.
    It has almost everything: happy, sad, romance, good story, wonderful ending.
    I'm trying to tell you to read it without giving away any of the story line.
    I highly recommend it for teens up to us much older folks.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 11, 2013

    Loved every page....

    Even the ones i was sobbing over, relating to the experience. Beautifully written; well worth the read. Have the klenex close by.

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  • Posted January 31, 2013

    I loved this book and after finishing this morning I think I hav

    I loved this book and after finishing this morning I think I have to savor it for a few days before starting a new read.  It had romance, humor, secrets, tragedy, relationship struggles, and of course the unconditional love of a sweet dog.  I cannot imagine anyone not being touched by this book.  It was amazing, and I will recommend it to everyone, but my copy is a keeper because I know I will read it again one day.  I honestly think it is one of the best books I have read...ever.

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  • Posted June 5, 2012

    This was a great read that I really enjoyed and have already rec

    This was a great read that I really enjoyed and have already recommended to others. The parts that I enjoyed the best were the conversations between the main character, Paul, and his dog, Stella. As I dog owner myself, I often found myself thinking that if my dog could talk, this is exactly the kind of conversation I'd be having with her. Highly recommended.

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    Posted July 2, 2011

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