Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Marley: A Dog Like No Other

Grogan, John. 2007. Marley: A dog like no other. New York: Harper Collins.

Marley, A Dog Like No Other, is a juvenile version of the bestseller, Marley & Me. I have not read the adult version, so I cannot compare the two, however, Marley: A Dog Like No Other is a wonderful book in its own right.

A true story, based on the life of a lovable yet incorrigible Labrador, this book is a celebration not only of a dog, but of a family as well - one that is willing to see its imperfections and find humor in them. Like a comedian that spends ten minutes setting up the perfect punchline, Grogan has a perfect sense of comedic timing. Even if the reader can guess the outcome of any one of Marley's many escapades, Grogan delivers them with humor. More difficult than humor, however, is conveying the love that the Grogan family has for their dog.

"We could have bought a yacht with what we spent on our dog and all the things he destroyed. We'd take Marley any day. Yachts don't wait by the door all day for your return. And they don't live for the moment they can climb into your lap or ride down the hill with you on a toboggan, licking your face."

Eight pages of color photos are included. This is a humorous and heartwarming book that has just been chosen as the 2009 One Book New Jersey choice for middle grade readers. An excellent choice!

The movie version is due out on Christmas Day. Read the book first!

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