Saturday, February 28, 2009

The Dog and the Novel

I buy a lot of used (out of print) books through AbeBooks. Every so often they have articles and interviews on topics near and dear to my heart. Today you can find a piece entitled The Dog and the Novel: Loyal Companions. Here's an excerpt from the introduction.

Literature has long had a love affair with dogs. Granted, in January, an AbeBooks bestseller was Vicki Myron's Dewey, a tale about a library cat, but by and large, dogs in literature must outnumber their feline counterparts 10 to one.

. . .

And truth isn't a factor - fiction lovers can't get enough dog stories, either. From the small but brave Toto from L. Frank Baum's Wizard of Oz, to the courageous collie in Lassie Come-Home, authors and audiences are enchanted by the adventures of their furry, four-legged, canine subjects.

With that in mind, we spoke to Dr. Bryan Cummins, professor, collector, author and Ontario-based expert on dog books. He's been a bookseller with AbeBooks since March 1999, and kindly agreed to offer his insights into the world of dog books.

We've also compiled a list of some of the best-loved fictional dog books available, from collectible, to children's, to fiction for adults, to help you discover more about man's best friend.

It's a lovely little article that brought back some fond memories of some of my favorite stories. And yes, I'm proudly a member of team dog. (Sorry all you kidlit cat people!)


  1. I'm a dog person, too and have always enjoyed stories with dogs! Even as a young girl.

  2. How funny - I grew up with both dogs and a cat, and today I saw a dog that, sitting, reached as high as my waist. And I immediately wanted to hug him so much, despite his size and the fact that it probably takes a barn shovel to clean up after him.

    I have grown into Team Dog. So weird.

    (This has NOTHING TO DO WITH TEAM JACOB, however. I'm SO not going there.)

  3. I think it is interesting that all ages are in love with dog books. In my college course we were talking about different titles of children's books with dogs and the list could go on forever. I have always been a dog lover!