Gone to the Dogs
By Mary Guterson
(St. Martin's Griffin, Paperback, 9780312541798, 288pp.)
Publication Date: July 7, 2009
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Rena never meant to steal her ex-boyfriend's dog. She was just casually driving by his new house, taking stock of his new life, when the dog invited himself into her car...Okay, so she stole the dog. But how could Brian, her boyfriend of seven years (not to mention “unofficial” fiancé), have done this to her? Fallen off the face of the earth, only to resurface with a gorgeous, live-in girlfriend and live-in dog? Honestly, a girl can only take so much. Besides, how could a yellow lab as great as this one be happy living with those two very bad people?
Unfortunately, being a dog-napper is the least of Rena's problems. Her mother’s dating a “potential” serial killer, her sister’s having an identity crisis and she’s the target of one hopeless fix-up after another—most recently, the highly moral Chuck, who just happens to know all about Rena's dog-napping escapades. If Rena wants to straighten things out, she'll have to face up to the choices she's made, the dreams she's put on hold, and the man who broke her heart.
Mary Guterson has written for magazines, journals, and public radio. She is the author of the novel, We Are All Fine Here, published in 2005. A former public school speech pathologist, she now works at a bookstore on Bainbridge Island, Washington.
"Guterson’s latest (following We Are All Fine Here, 2005), delivers another wacky chick-lit heroine, twentysomething Rena, part-time Jew and full-time waitress, depressed and moping after being dumped for another woman. In a mad moment, she steals her ex’s dog, and in the process of caring for Big Guy, she starts to recover from her depression and realizes it’s time to move on from her college apartment, job, and lifestyle… there are many zany and refreshingly realistic characters, from big sister Aviva—a dope dealer turned both stay-at home-mom and Orthodox Jew—to possible love interest and amateur moviemaker Chuck. Suggest this one to Jennifer Weiner’s many fans and to readers of Julie Powell’s nonfiction Julie and Julia (2005) about another young woman struggling to find a life that works." —Booklist“Hilarious, touching, and downright inspiring, Gone to the Dogs is unrestrained good fun and an irresistible read!" –Garth Stein, New York Times bestselling author The Art of Racing in the Rain
"Fans of Jennifer Weiner will eat this up like good dark chocolate." —Debra Dean, author of The Madonnas of Leningrad and Confessions of a Falling Woman
“The sharp wit and keen observations of Gone to the Dogs had me compulsively turning pages. If Saul Bellow and Lucille Ball produced a love child, she would write like Mary Guterson.” —Randy Sue Coburn, author of Owl Island and A Better View of Paradise