A Dog's Life

A Dog's Life

4.4 11
by Peter Mayle
     
 

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The bestsellling author of A Year in Provence and Hotel Pastis now surveys his territory from a differnt vantage point: the all-fours perspective of his dog, Boy—"a dog whose personality is made up of equal parts Boswell and Dr. Johnson, Mencken and A. A. Milne" (Chicago Sun-Times). Enhanced by 59 splendidly whimsical drawings by Edward

Overview

The bestsellling author of A Year in Provence and Hotel Pastis now surveys his territory from a differnt vantage point: the all-fours perspective of his dog, Boy—"a dog whose personality is made up of equal parts Boswell and Dr. Johnson, Mencken and A. A. Milne" (Chicago Sun-Times). Enhanced by 59 splendidly whimsical drawings by Edward Koren.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Cahners\\Publishers_Weekly
Both canine "memoir" and cautionary tale, this sprightly account of the further adventures of Boy, Mayle's real-life dog introduced in Toujours Provence, is a gem of its kind. As animated by Mayle, Boy is a clever chap given to literary allusions, urbane observations and stinging bon mots. With many an arch and insightful comment, Boy celebrates his life after he escapes from his first owner, a brutish farmer, and is adopted by a kindly woman (thereafter called madame) and her "other half," a rather dim-witted soul who is of course Mayle himself. Boy's encounters with wrathful butchers and irate owners of dogs in heat and of treed cats are the high points of this picaresque tale, balanced by his admonitions on how to acquire social polish and communicate effectively with insensitive humans. From his spot under the dining-room table, Boy receives "a wide ranging, eclectic education," learning chiefly that "the management," as he calls his owners, are incorrigible and bibulous party givers. Boy himself proves incorrigible too: in hilarious scenes, he explains how he overestimates human intelligence time and again. While most of the episodes have the ring of truth, those toward the end of this slim volume veer toward farce and bear the marks of having been thought up to pad out the pages. Yet this is a delightful read, augmented by Koren's suitably droll illustrations, and the closing sentence is worthy of inclusion in any quiz about famous last lines.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Mayle's novel purports to be a confessional autobiography-of the author's dog, Boy. (June)
Library Journal
Woof! Woof! After so many books by our two-legged "best friends" that try to decipher our "secret lives", it's so nice to have someone of our kind tell it like it really is. A dog's life can be very a good one indeed, especially if you are as lucky as the hero of our story to find an aimable human companion like Mayle, author of A Year in Provence (LJ 4/1/90), and Hotel Pastis (LJ 9/1/93). In this charming, if at times too cutsey, memoir, Boy, a shaggy but highly intelligent canine of mysterious lineage (we never use the politically incorrect "mutt"), recounts his humble beginnings with his 12 siblings, his abandonment by his mother and later by his unpleasant owner, and his wanderings through the Provenal countryside until he is adopted by the Mayles (an event also recounted in Toujours Provence, LJ 51/1/91). Judging from Edward Koren's drawings, what Boy lacks in devasting good looks is made up by his plucky personality. Canine lovers as well as francophiles and fans of Mayle's books will enjoy this. I give it three paws.-Wilda "Coco Chanel" Williams, "Library Journal"

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780307791924
Publisher:
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date:
07/03/2013
Sold by:
Random House
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
208
Sales rank:
178,446
File size:
9 MB

Meet the Author

Peter Mayle spent fifteen years in the advertising business, first as a copywriter and then as a reluctant executive, before escaping Madison Avenue in 1975 to write educational books for children.  In 1990, Mr. Mayle published A Year in Provence, which became an international bestseller.  He is also the author of Toujours Provence, Hotel Pastis, Encore Provence, Anything Considered and Chasing Cezanne.  In addition to writing books which have been translated into more than twenty languages, Mayle has contributed to the Sunday Times, Financial Times, Independent, GQ and Esquire.  He and his wife and two dogs live in the South of France.

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Dog's Life 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 11 reviews.
dogcrazy More than 1 year ago
Every sentence of this book will make you smile, if not chuckle. What a pleasure--a truly delightful book!!! I read a copy from my local library; now I am buying my own copy, plus one for my parents. If you love dogs and humor, get this book----you will NOT regret it!!!!
puppycare More than 1 year ago
This book is a bit dated now in some ways, France and the world have moved on, but everything about the dog is timeless. Mayle is a wonderful observer and a great translator of canine behavior. If you love dogs, and intelligent and sympathetic writing about a dog who is all dog and not a substitute human or child you should thoroughly enjoy this book and have a lot of laughs.
Guest More than 1 year ago
One of my favorite books! If you have or ever had a dog you love, you'll see him in this book. 'Boy', the main character is witty, a little fresh, and quite lovable. I only wish Peter Mayle would let Boy speak again in another book!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Buttered-Toast More than 1 year ago
I5 Bones for this classic canine story  have been a fan of Peter Mayle for a while. A Dog’s Life is different from his usual writing style but I thoroughly enjoyed it. This story is told from the dog’s point of view. It seems like a very accurate accounting of what I think dog’s reactions may be. But then I tend to give my dogs more credit regarding their thought processes and adding human emotion. “Boy” was a pup with an unhappy childhood. He was chained outside with barely any shelter and had a cruel owner. When he was taken hunting he proved to inefficient at that task as he was afraid of gunfire. I was becoming truly sad when I read how he was abandoned. The cruel owner took him for a car ride, pulled the dog from the car and hurled a piece of meat into the weeds. The dog took off for the meat and the owner drove off, abandoning the poor dog to fend for himself. The dog roamed the countryside, eating scraps when he could find anything and eventually went into a city to beg for food and company. Each time he followed someone it seemed they may take him in but he was always shooed away in the end. Finally, on one of his trips roaming the roadside, a kind lady stopped the car and offered him a ride. This is the beginning of Boy’s good fortune. The kind lady and her husband are none other than Peter Mayle and his wife. They dubbed the dog Boy and took him in. What a wonderful life Boy had living in the Provence countryside, wandering from the kitchen to the local woods and then writing his memoirs. Boy provides us with his observations of his new owners (he calls them management), thoughts on hygiene habits of various nationalities who visit the French cottage, cats, meals and wine. The drawings in the book were done by Edward Koren and are perfect for all the stories. I liked this book very much and it’s a very quick read. It’s humorous, it’s set in Provence France and offers a good storyline – what’s not to like. 5 Bones for this classic canine story. Let’s share a white Bordeaux in honor of Boy’s fine accommodations in the Provence countryside. It’s always nice to read a happy ending.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
AARRGGHH! The kit got adopted into the lightning clan! I think we should attack it with all our warriors. Go to warrior res. 1 and there is a sign up there for the lightning clan. It will tell you how to go there.