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Book Club: June: Animal Stories

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
Many thanks to RandomGirl for this idea! :wave:

Book Club this month is celebrating animals and those who love / tolerate / despair of them. The criteria are pretty broad, but basically we would like to see a strong animal character who plays a significant role in the plot. Anything from War Horse to the Famous Five!

We will allow fiction or non-fiction nominations.

Nominations will be open until the 20th, and then we'll get going on the poll.

Nomation format:
Book: Snuff by Terry Pratchett | Kindle Edition | ePub

Synopsis: It is a truth universally acknowledged that a policeman taking a holiday would barely have had time to open his suitcase before he finds his first corpse.

And Commander Sam Vimes of the Ankh-Morpork City Watch is on holiday in the pleasant and innocent countryside, but not for him a mere body in the wardrobe. There are many, many bodies and an ancient crime more terrible than murder.

He is out of his jurisdiction, out of his depth, out of bacon sandwiches, occasionally snookered and out of his mind, but never out of guile. Where there is a crime there must be a finding, there must be a chase and there must be a punishment.

They say that in the end all sins are forgiven.

But not quite all...
From Amazon

Reason for Nomination: Any reason you like can go here. The above is an example, and was our book for March 2012, so no nominating!

As I did above, if there are Kindle/e-reader editions, put separate links to those, please.

Edited to add, I like putting the covers in to make it look pretty. You don't have to!

Comments

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Book: Timoleon Vieta Come Home by Dan Rhodes (link to Kindle ed. is on that page and I'm lazy)

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    Synopsis: Meet the mongrel. Timoleon Vieta. A deeply loyal, undemanding and loving companion ...with the most beautiful eyes. He's living an idyllic existence in the Italian countryside with Cockroft, a composer in exile. Until, that is, the mysterious and malevolent Bosnian comes to stay. How will the stranger affect the bond between dog and master? Timoleon Vieta Come Home is a free-wheeling take on the Lassie legend, deeply moving and hysterically funny.

    Reason: Because it's heart-wrenching and beautiful and I loved it instantly.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Watership Down by Richard Adams | kindle | ePub

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    Synopsis: One of the most beloved novels of our time, Richard Adams's Watership Down takes us to a world we have never truly seen: to the remarkable life that teems in the fields, forests and riverbanks far beyond our cities and towns.

    It is a powerful saga of courage, leadership and survival; an epic tale of a hardy band of adventurers forced to flee the destruction of their fragile community. and their trials and triumphs in the face of extraordinary adversity as they pursue a glorious dream called "home."
    (from Goodreads.com)

    Reason for nomination: I have never read it!
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    A Dog Named Slugger By Leigh Brill | Kindle | Kobo

    a_dog_named_slugger.jpg

    Synopsis: The true life story of a dog who changed everything for one woman. For the first time in my life, I didn't need to pretend, I didn't need to be tough: I only needed to be honest. "I have cerebral palsy. I walk funny and my balance is bad. I fall a lot. My hands shake, too. That means I'm not so good at carrying things. And if I drop stuff, sometimes it's hard to just bend down and get it." I waited anxiously for the interviewer's response. She smiled. "It sounds like a service dog could be great for you." So began Leigh Brill's journey toward independence and confidence, all thanks to a trained companion dog named Slugger. The struggling college student and the Labrador with a "a coat like sunshine" and a tail that never stopped wagging became an instant team. Together, they transformed a challenge into a triumph. Together, they inspired and educated everyone they met. Now, Leigh honors her friend with the story of their life, together.

    Reason for nomination:
    I'm hard, and I cried, it's amazing
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Kym (A true story about a siamese cat) by Joyce Stranger

    Synposis: (Taken from Amazon reviews as I don't think a synopsis actually exists online and my paper copy is at my mum's (hopefully!))

    A fabulous story which I had in a falling apart paperback for many years. It's a book I re-read at last annually because it is so enchanting.

    Joyce Stranger is the mistress of animal behaviour stories - obviously a perceptive and observant observer, of man and beast, who truly loves all creatures. And that quality shows in this biography of hr first Siamese, Kym, a real character who's interesting life is shown to us from both cat's and owner's point of view.

    As you read it seems there is no mischief he does not get into. There is of course, the obligatory cat-up-a-tall-tree anecdote, and many more which I won't mention as it would spoil the delight in the tale for new readers.

    Cat lovers will laugh and cry and go "my cat does just that!" so many times as they read this book. Thoroughly satisfying, heartily recommend. And all animal lovers will enjoy many of hr other 'tails' too.

    Reason for nomination: I remember loving it when I read it as a young adult. It will make you laugh and cry and empathise :)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I'm going to have to check on availability on that one; generally speaking if something is out-of-print (only available through second-hand sellers) we have ruled it out because people might not be able to track it down. I'll see what I can find out! :)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    piccolo wrote: »
    I'm going to have to check on availability on that one; generally speaking if something is out-of-print (only available through second-hand sellers) we have ruled it out because people might not be able to track it down. I'll see what I can find out! :)

    Ah, makes sense that, I didn't really cotton onto the whole out-of-print thing :)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Purple_roo wrote: »
    Ah, makes sense that, I didn't really cotton onto the whole out-of-print thing :)

    Yeah, sorry. I think it's not widely available enough. Which sucks because Kym sounds hilarious (in the process of trying to track it down I came across a lot of reviews)!
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Book: Walking Ollie by Stephen Foster

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    Synopsis: One winter's afternoon, Stephen Foster walked into a dog re-homing centre with the intention of picking up a retired greyhound. Instead, he acquired an abandoned lurcher pup. Foster's knowledge of dogs was so vague that he had to look up 'lurcher' in key reference work "The Giant Book of the Dog", to find out what sort of animal was coming to join the family. His research counted for little: the new arrival did not conform to any known breed standard, or indeed any standard whatsoever that might be considered dog-normal. "Walking Ollie" is a hilarious - and often heartrending - account of one man's attempt to turn a psychotic wild animal into something resembling a domestic pet.

    Reason: funny and heart-warming. I'll let you in to a kinda spoiler in the discussion thread if it wins. I always think non-fiction stories about animal ownership are a bit wishy washy. But this one wasn't at all. Also give Along Came Dylan (the sequel) a go.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Bumpage - any more for any more?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Refraining from nominating The Gruffalo...
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    OMG Gruffalo!

    Right.

    Call of the Wild by Jack London | Kindle | Kobo

    Synopsis: When the moon rises over the Klondike River, you can still hear the lonely howl of Buck, the most famous ghost dog of them all. Kidnapped, beaten, and starved, Buck becomes a legend when he is shipped to the snowy northern goldfields to work as a sled dog. Bucks companions have become almost as famous. Theres Spitz, the dog that Buck must fight for the leadership of the pack, the one-eyed Sol-leks, the tragic Curly, Dave, Joe, Pike, Dub, and Dolly. And theres John Thornton, the new master who Buck comes to love. Yet, Buck knows that one day he must leave the human world, for his ancestors are telling him to answer the call of the wild.

    Reason for nominating: I like it.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I'll close this tomorrow.

    Meanwhile:

    Oscar by Kate Allen | kindle | I can't find it as an epub :(

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    Synopsis: When Kate Allan's beloved black cat, Oscar, is found lying severely injured in a field near their Jersey home, she is sure the accident-prone boy has met his end. With both hind legs severed by a combine-harvester, his life hangs in the balance; luckily for Oscar, his vet knows Noel Fitzpatrick, star of BBC One's The Bionic Vet, who agrees to try pioneering surgery to replace his legs with specially created prosthetics. This is the amazing true account of a loving family faced with agonising decisions and unexpected twists of fate, and a courageous black feline destined to become the world's first bionic cat.
    (from Waterstones)

    Reason: Bionic cat! The world is not safe from our cybernetic feline overlords.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Incidentally, my last employer were the people who provided the bionic legs.
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