Sophie: The Incredible True Story of the Castaway Dog (Hardcover)
The Incredible True Story of the Castaway Dog
Da Capo Lifelong Books, 9780738214672, 307pp.
Publication Date: January 24, 2012
About the Author
Praise For Sophie: The Incredible True Story of the Castaway Dog…
Publishers Weekly, 10/3/11
“A tender, delightful story of how a cosseted pup turned into a hardy, intrepid—and very lucky—‘supercanine,’ this book will endear itself to dog and adventure lovers everywhere.”
Kirkus Reviews, 11/1/11
“This story of canine loyalty and the power of human-animal relationships is as charming as its blue-furred heroine. A treat for dog lovers.”
Temple Grandin, author of Animals in Translation and Animals Make Us Human, August 29, 2011
“It was amazing how this dog swam to a remote island and survived to be reunited with her family. All dog lovers should read this wonderful book.”
“This emotionally uplifting saga of a Queensland, Australia, family who lost overboard their beloved blue heeler dog, Sophie, while on a weekend boating trip reflects the strength and loyal spirit of these people and canines….Animal lovers and survival story enthusiasts will enjoy this riveting, true store, told with strong local flavor.”
“Dog lovers will appreciate this heartwarming story of animal survival and the ties between humans and animals.”
American Way, February 2012
“A heartwarming tale of the power of love and perseverance.”
“Sophie packs every bit of real-life drama with an absorbing Australian accent and a bit of refreshing good fortune to boot…remarkable and crisp narrative, Sophie nourishes as well as celebrates with a richly detailed mix of passion, inspiration and hope you won’t soon forget.”
Cesar’s Way, March/April 2012“Her story will encourage you.” Richmond Times Dispatch, 3/4/12
“A miracle…and one that will touch not only readers devoted to their pets but also anyone who has known the healing power of love.” Hudson Valley News, 3/1/12
“[A] miraculous story of a brave dog who survived insurmountable odds.” Oprah.com, 3/16/12
“For dog owners who have ever gazed into the adoring eyes of their pet and felt like there were no bounds to what this creature would do for them...this book will confirm that hunch.”
Conversation Starters from ReadingGroupChoices.com
- Dave and Jan believed “that childhood and family life were better with dogs.” Would you agree, and why?
- Did any of Sophie’s personality traits or habits remind you of dogs you have owned? Like what?
- What effect did Sophie have on Dave and Jan once they became empty-nesters? Can you relate to their experience in your own life? How so?
- Do you think Dave and Jan let their feelings get in the way of their judgment in bringing Sophie on the boat?
- What do you think of Dave and Jan’s decision not to alert the authorities about Sophie’s disappearance? What would you have done if you were in their situation?
- Did Dave and Jan’s reaction to Sophie’s disappearance surprise you considering they had said that “they had always loved their dogs, but they were not sentimental”?
- Did you think it was a good idea so soon after Sophie’s disappearance to give Dave and Jan a new puppy? How did the new puppy, Ruby, impact the Griffith family, and how did she differ from Sophie in their eyes? And do you think it made it easier or harder for them to cope with the loss of Sophie?
- Why do you think Sophie was able to survive in the open ocean and for five months on the islands of Keswick and St. Bees? Is it explained, as Australian vet, Rob McMahon says, by the fact that it “would take a dog as tough as a cattle dog to do it,” or could there be some other explanation?
- Was Jan’s sense of Sophie's being alive when Dave and she were on St. Bees just wishful thinking, or was it a premonition?
- Why do you think Sophie chose not to respond when several people who lived on the island, including Peter Berck, offered her food and companionship? Do you think it was out of loyalty to the Griffith family, as suggested in the book?
- How did Sophie’s extraordinary return home affect the relationships between members of the Griffith family—Dave, Jan, Bridget, Luke, and Ellen?
- Have you ever experienced or heard of a similar story of a dog or any pet overcoming tremendous adversity?
- What does this story say about the bond between pets and their owners?