Red Dog Hardcover
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Top Customer Reviews
Although this book might be considered in the "young folks" genre of the "Lassie" or "Shep" variety, Red Dog was real. Giving him a name would have been out of place. De Bernieres introduces him as "Tally Ho", but that was in his early years when Red Dog's centre of operations was a caravan inhabited by an older couple. Moving into a mining community, Red Dog discovered how to manipulate the miners, all men without companions, and the surrounding communities. They petted, fed and sheltered him in turns. He cadged rides in buses, cars, even on the train running south to Perth, nearly 1500 kilometres distant. As the town grew, Red Dog improved his tastes, hitting hotels and restaurants for culinary leftovers. He took up with one of the workers, but John's death in the bush led Red Dog to further his explorations. He was seeking his lost "master".
The stories of Red Dog's wanderings give de Bernieres an opportunity to apply his descriptive skills to the people and the countryside. He fully captures the Australian inflections, and notes how a mining town was a magnet for itinerants.Read more ›
In this beautiful book, Louis de Bernieres celebrates the life of a real Red Dog that lived in Western Australia during the 1970s.
It conveys a real sense of this marvellous dog's character, who was a real people's friend and was widely known and loved in Western Australia, where it got into all sorts of amusing scrapes during its lifetime.
This book, which is a novella rather than a novel due to its shortness, stands out from the rest of Louis de Bernieres work as different: it does not have the serious political undertones of earlier novels such as Captain Corelli's Mandolin, the bestseller that made Louis de Bernieres literary name; it is, however, tragicomic like his first three books, because of its ending; but, it is far more positive - a celebration of a dog's life rather than a political critique.
It therefore represents a break with the past for Louis de Bernieres.
This funny and entertaining dog's tale gets my thumbs up!
(It also has some marvellous illustations by Alan Baker).
This is not a child's book, perhaps for young readers in Junior High, but not for young children. This is a book about adults and how a remarkably charismatic canine changed their lives. This is not a fairly tale, it includes the realities of very trying circumstances and the people who pioneer the way in this extremely difficult environment. When it gets hot in the USA warnings suggest certain groups stay indoors. When it gets hot down under, warnings are issued for gas tanks that are prone to explode when exposed to the sun!
I think it is great that an author who has established himself as an accomplished literary writer would have the courage to step well away from what has worked for him repeatedly. I was reminded of some of John Steinbeck's work that centered around animals, both his own and fictional. If John Steinbeck can make the change I believe it is safe for other accomplished authors to explore unfamiliar genres, and they do not deserve to be punished for doing so. This is especially the case when the results are so worthwhile. I was going to give this 4 stars but I stepped it up to 5. The book was punished and I wanted to even out what is a brief but entering read.
Most recent customer reviews
After seeing the DVD, I just had to have the book to see how much different the two stories were. Louis de Bernieres is one of my favourite authors (Correlli's Mandolin) so I was... Read morePublished 20 months ago by K. Clark
a beautifully written tale of an exceptional resident of Western Australia. Mr. Bernières captivates his readers as deeply as the Red dog captivates all of the characters. Read morePublished on March 18 2002
This book has it all - tears, laughter, romance. I fell in love with Red Dog. Even though the language is simple, and the story short, this is not just a children's book as... Read morePublished on March 10 2002
I loved this book, it was short, like Red Dog's life, it was compact and full of adventure. It described a landscape that is unknown to most people and on the whole was... Read morePublished on Jan. 7 2002 by MS Gabrielle Liddy
This is a lovely book, but it's a children's book: I bet the publishers simply wanted to widen the possible market by playing down that aspect. Read morePublished on Dec 22 2001
If you like dogs, you'll enjoy this book. Much of the negative reaction to it seems to result from comparing it to de Bernieres's earlier works. Read morePublished on Oct. 17 2001 by jhibutti
To put my 1 star into some context, let me start by saying I have no hesitation in rating all four of Louis de Bernieres previous books either 4 or 5 stars. Read morePublished on Oct. 17 2001 by Mark in Los Angeles