A Big Little Life: A Memoir of a Joyful Dog Named Trixie

A Big Little Life: A Memoir of a Joyful Dog Named Trixie

4.2 232
by Dean Koontz
     
 

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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

In a profound, funny, and beautifully rendered portrait of a beloved companion, bestselling novelist Dean Koontz remembers the golden retriever who changed his life. A retired service dog, Trixie was three when Dean and his wife, Gerda, welcomed her into their home. She was superbly trained, but her greatest gifts

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Overview

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

In a profound, funny, and beautifully rendered portrait of a beloved companion, bestselling novelist Dean Koontz remembers the golden retriever who changed his life. A retired service dog, Trixie was three when Dean and his wife, Gerda, welcomed her into their home. She was superbly trained, but her greatest gifts couldn’t be taught: her keen intelligence, her innate joy, and an uncanny knack for living in the moment. Whether chasing a tennis ball or protecting those she loved, Trixie gave all she had to everything she did, inspiring Dean and Gerda to trust their instincts and recapture a sense of wonder that will remain with them always. Trixie lived fewer than twelve years; in this wide world, she was a little thing. But in every way that mattered, she lived a big life.

CBS Sunday Morning featured A Big Little Life in a rare interview with Dean Koontz that focuses on his philanthropic efforts with and affection for dogs. View it here: http://youtu.be/40bWUc6k_J8

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“[A] love letter to his golden retriever.”—People

“Read this book to be entertained, uplifted and deeply moved.”—The Bark
 
“A humorous, poignant portrait of [a] remarkable dog.”—Kirkus Reviews
 
“One dog book that everyone . . . will deeply enjoy.”—Booklist (starred review)
 
“A delightful read. . . an unusually effective brief for the joy that dogs bring us.”—The American Spectator
 
“A tender, insightful, loving homage . . . an inspirational book of love, hope and humor.”—Bookreporter.com
Kirkus Reviews
In his nonfiction debut, mega-bestselling novelist Koontz (In Odd We Trust, 2008, etc.) presents a humorous, poignant portrait of his remarkable dog. The author and his wife adopted three-year-old Trixie in 1998. Elbow surgery forced the golden retriever into early retirement from Canine Companions for Independence (CCI), an organization that raises and trains assistance dogs for people with physical disabilities. Trixie fit right into the Koontzes' disciplined writing life and spotless California home. She was so well-trained that she relieved herself on command and rested calmly under restaurant tables, ignoring tasty scraps thrown to her by other diners. But impeccable behavior and uncanny intelligence-including attempts at speech-never diluted her exuberance or innocence. These qualities restored Koontz's sense of wonder and encouraged him to take more risks in his fiction writing. Here, the media-shy author opens up about childhood poverty, love for his wife and his spiritual beliefs. He also provides plenty of laughs, borne more of his self-effacing humor and mastery of language than doggie antics-though Trixie's "own" essay is certainly a highlight. Any post-Marley dog memoir cannot escape comparison to John Grogan's blockbuster. Determined to convey that the exquisite magic and mystery of Trixie put her on a different plane, Koontz preempts the debate early on. "This is not going to be a memoir about a pillow-destroying, cat-chasing, furniture-chewing, miscreant kind of canine," he writes, "she was something more than a dog . . . this spirit was a wonder and a revelation." Trixie defied conventional wisdom from animal behaviorists who believe that dogs cannot express emotions,judge character or remember things as humans can. Friends, family and strangers corroborated that Trixie was "special" in an otherworldly sense. Unprompted, an Indian neighbor informed Koontz, "Your dog is a person who has almost arrived at complete enlightenment and will in the next life be perfect and blameless, a very great person."Heady stuff for a pup, but Koontz's talent lies in making the preposterous believable. Was Trixie some sort of angel? Regardless, her enchanting story will have fans panting for more.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780345530608
Publisher:
Random House Publishing Group
Publication date:
07/12/2011
Pages:
288
Sales rank:
90,481
Product dimensions:
5.40(w) x 8.10(h) x 0.60(d)

Meet the Author

Dean Koontz won an Atlantic Monthly fiction competition when he was a senior in college, and he’s been writing ever since. He has sold more than 400,000,000 copies of his books, in 38 languages. Dean lives in Southern California with his wife, Gerda, and their new dog, Anna.

Brief Biography

Hometown:
Newport Beach, California
Date of Birth:
July 9, 1945
Place of Birth:
Everett, Pennsylvania
Education:
B.S. (major in English), Shippensburg University, 1966
Website:
http://www.deankoontz.com

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