Sunday, November 25, 2007

wild animals of the tame kind

While we're on the subject of animals, I've been reading about a wild animal of another kind: an enormous, rambunctious, destructive, affectionate, psychotic labrador called Marley, the kind of dog who pulls garage doors from their moorings, gets expelled from obedience class, and tears walls to pieces during thunderstorms.

The book is Marley and me: Life and love with the world's worst dog by John Grogan, which I read after seeing it on a facebook friend's profile (I can't remember who, but thankyou!)

This book was a breath of fresh air, making absolutely no intellectual demands (it's fairly well written, but not in the "worthy English literature" sense) and causing lots of big belly laughs (LOL, as they say in SMS land, unless you're my mother, in which case LOL will never mean anything other than Lots Of Love). Good medicine for a troubled mind and heart, following the trivial (see whiny blogs below) and not-so-trivial (family health issues) trials of the last couple of months.

My brain also needed a break after ploughing slowly through the encouraging but densely written book Spiritual Depression by Martyn Lloyd-Jones (yes! I've finished, thanks to a looming deadline for a book review.) I've also been trying to wrap my brain around some difficult issues to do with self-control and food, involving my first encounter with New Testament Greek (thank you, Rachel!) And I've been reading some pretty heavy novels recently (thanks again, facebook friends, you and your Visual Bookshelfs.)

Of course, you won't enjoy this book if you're like my husband, who has a pathological aversion to dogs of any kind; or if you can only bring youself to read worthy books by Calvin and Carson, Nietzsche and Foucault, or Dostoyevsky and Doctorow. I'm not so discerning, I'll read pretty much anything, including the small print on the side of the muffin mix box, unless it's too appallingly written. I do like my apostraphes in the right place, though.

So if you're feeling tired after exams, a year at work, or months caring for young children, I suggest you take a copy of this book on holidays this summer, and relax mentally as well as physically. Happy reading!

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