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City Dog [Paperback]

Alison Pace
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
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Book Description

Sept. 2 2008
New from Alison Pace, the author of Pug Hill.

After her divorce, Amy Dodge thought she?d finally write the next Great American Novel. Instead she?s written a bestselling children?s book series, Run, Carlie, Run! starring her adorable and spirited West Highland White terrier and a dashing (but fictional) Scottish explorer. When Carlie is offered a starring role in her own television show, and the explorer begins to take on a life of his own, Amy?s world takes a surreal turn.

But just when Amy starts thinking it?s a dog?s life after all, she figures out a way to make everything change. And though life in New York isn?t always a walk in the park, it might just take her exactly where she needs to be.


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Product Description

About the Author

Alison Pace is the author of the novels If Andy Warhol Had A Girlfriend, Pug Hill, Through Thick And Thin, and City Dog. Her essays have appeared in several anthologies including Howl: A Collection Of The Best Contemporary Dog Wit. She lives in New York City where she is at work on another book.

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Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
By Lydia - Novel Escapes TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
Unfortunately this single girl tale didn't grab me as much as I would have liked. I'm not sure I'm the best judge though, having not only recently separated from my husband but left my dog with him as well, and I found myself struggling with this chick lit novel.

The concept of three narrators was interesting and I laughed at the Carlie's narration, amused because I could just picture the doggie thoughts racing and distracted. Alison Pace definitely has the doggie antics down. But I wasn't sure about Robert McGuire's narration. I found myself jumped out of the flow of the novel, which Carlie's also did, but I was more amused with the doggie thoughts than those of Amy's fictional character.

I also grew tired of Amy's lack of movement forward. She came across as very depressed and with it being three years after her marriage dissolved, I wanted to shake her to get it together (and prayed this won't be me in three years - see, maybe not the best judge). I didn't feel much connection to her, or any of the other characters really and wasn't sure about her love interest, nor did I feel much of a connection even between them.

In the end, I was left with how wonderful doggie love is and how much I missed my dog, but didn't take away much else from this novel - except maybe how I don't want to be in the same place as Amy three years from now!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.8 out of 5 stars  16 reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Read Sept. 4 2008
By Robin Epstein - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This funny, touching page turner is one of those books you try to force yourself to read more slowly because you don't want the ride to end. Pace's gift for storytelling, her deeply charming characters and her witty dialogue are on full display in this novel, and I didn't want to put the thing down until I learned what happened to Amy, the book's winning protagonist and her spirited dog, Carlie. (Though it wasn't the ending I expected, the character made a great and admirable choice--how refreshing!)

The author excels at creating characters who feel like friends. They're people you'd want to hang out with, people you root for. Who doesn't know the woman who runs into her crush just after her dog has vomited on her shirt? (Or who isn't that person herself?) Still, Pace's characters aren't caricatures. They're funnier than most folks I know, yes, but she keeps them grounded in the wonderful and flawed details of real life.

I loved CITY DOG. I think it's a book for fans of romantic comedy, for fans of dogs and "dog people," and for fans of great writing. It's a fun, fast read that will keep you laughing and smiling throughout.

In short, buy it!
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Alison Pace's best book yet! Sept. 4 2008
By Jessie Rose - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
What a great book! City Dog combines a compelling story, endearing characters and a creative writing style that makes it a unique, fun, and fast paced read. There are 3 narrators in the book, one of whom is the City Dog herself! In a stroke of brilliance, Pace enters into the mind of the pup and brings her to life with such enthusiasm and humor you just have to keep reading. The book tackles some difficult topics as the main character seeks purpose in her life, but it's done in a way that inspires rather than depresses.
I've read and loved all of Pace's novels, but this one takes her to a new level. If you're looking for a great weekend read, definitely buy this book!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars mild fun Nov. 9 2008
By J. Schoenbrun - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
it's a mildly pleasant read but a little slow. not a book I couldn't put down. I put it down quite a few times before I finished. the best chapters by far were the ones actually narrated by the dog. at this pace excels.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Oct. 13 2008
By happy reader - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
A writer in New York City deals with her pooch's success and her own disappointments. I enjoyed City Dog so much, from start to finish. This story of a woman and her dog making their way through life in New York City was funny and light-hearted but also dealt with some more serious issues, too like figuring out the life you are supposed to lead. The story was told from the point of view of three narrators: the writer, her famous dog, and one of the writer's fictional characters. I thought it was done really well, and each voice was distinct. I loved the chapters narrated by the Westie, Carlie. They were so adorable. I recommend this book to dog-lovers and lovers of thoughtful romantic comedies and charming fiction.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Meet Carlie! April 21 2011
By Leah Graham - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
After leaving her ex-husband Jonathan, Amy Dodge thought she'd write the Next Big American Novel. Instead she's the author of the highly popular children's series Run, Carlie, Run starring her very own West Highland Terrier Carlie and the fictional Robert Maguire. When Carlie is offered her own TV show, Amy starts to feel a stranger in her own life. Can Amy claw her way back into Carlie's life and can she start to re-love New York City again?

The book opens with Amy on a date, a date which doesn't work out due to the man's use of a verb (you have to read it to get it). Amy then tells us all about how she met her now-ex-husband Jonathan. Then, as Amy's date finally ends, we meet Carlie. Cue point of view change to Carlie, West Highland Terrier extraordinaire. From then on the book changes points of view intermittently as Carlie becomes a TV star in the making. The book is all told in the first person and we have three narratives: Amy (human), Carlie (Westie) and Robert Maguire (fictional Scottish hero).

You may be slightly confused and wondering why on Earth a dog and a fictional hero would be narrating a novel, but trust me, it works. In fact Carlie's insights made the book for me. I have a Westie and could imagine my dog, Suki, thinking everything Carlie thinks and says. Robert Maguire didn't really work for me, I thought that was a stretch too far, but it didn't hinder my enjoyment of the book. Amy was the more prominent of the three narratives but for me it was Carlie who stole the show. The relationship between Amy and Carlie was wholly believeable - if you have a dog, you'll know - and that's the kind of relationship we have with our two dogs.

Don't get me wrong, I thoroughly enjoyed City Dog I just felt as if there was something stopping me from loving it completely. As I mentioned earlier, it was a strange feeling, not being able to connect fully with a book or its main characters. Alison Pace's writing is fantastic and she manages to capture the love between humans and animals perfectly. Even if I wasn't already aware Alison had a dog I'd have guesed it from her writing. Carlie was such a fantastic little character to have in the book and my love of dogs helped no end. I probably wouldn't recommend this to someone who isn't a fan of animals and in particular dogs as I'm sure a lot of people will find this quite an unbelievable story. For me though, I really enjoyed it and look forward to trying to get my hands on Alison's other novels.
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