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Dog Lovers Book Club - February 2020

Looking to escape from your daily routine with a dog book? Find your next favourite read in this February 2020 selection of the Dog Lovers Book Club. Books always make a great present for a dog lover on Valentine's Day!

by Ben Moon 

In the bestselling tradition of Finding Gobi and Marley & Me, the moving story of a dog, his human, and the friendship that saved both their lives – and inspired countless others.

Ben Moon had no intention of getting a dog until he met the soulful gaze of a Husky-Pit Bull cross pup in a rescue shelter. Ben instantly felt a connection, and his friendship with the extraordinary Denali was born.

The two friends set out on the road together on an adventure that would take them through some of the best years of their lives. 

When Ben was diagnosed with colorectal cancer at 29, Denali never left his side until the pair were back out surfing and climbing crags. Soon after Denali was struck by the same disease, and Ben had the chance to return the favour. 
This is the story of an extraordinary friendship, and the power of the love we give and receive when we have our friends by our side.

Paperback, 288 pages
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Australia, 1st February 2020

RRP: $27.99 at

by Emily Dean

The funny, heart-breaking, wonderfully told story of love, family and overwhelming loss which led one woman to find hope and healing in the dog she always wanted.

Growing up with the Deans was a fabulous training ground for many things: ignoring unpaid bills, being the most entertaining guest at dinner, deconstructing poetry. It was never home for the dog Emily craved.

Emily shared the lively chaos with her beloved older sister Rachael, her rock. Over the years the sisters bond grew ever closer. As Rachael went on to have the cosy family and treasured dog, Giggle, Emily threw herself into unsettled adventure - dog ownership remaining a distant dream.

Then, tragically, Rachael is diagnosed with cancer. In just three devastating years Emily loses not only her sister but both her parents as well.

This is the funny heart-breaking, wonderfully told story of how Emily discovers that it is possible to overcome the worst that life can throw at you, that it's never too late to make peace with your past, and that the right time is only ever now, as she finally starts again with her very own dog - the adorable Shih-tzu named Raymond.

Paperback, 304 pages
Publisher: Hachette Australia; Imprint: Hodder Paperbacks, 28th January 2020

RRP: $22.99 at

by Vita Sackville-West

A collection of photographs of 44 breeds of dogs that capture them in particular and very individual moods. 'How very odd it must be to be a dog...'

Over the years Vita Sackville-West had many dogs, including Cocker Spaniel Pippin (famously the mother of Virginia Woolf's Spaniel, Pinka), German Shepherd Rollo, whose photograph hangs in Sissinghurst Castle, and Elkhound Canute, who used to hop on the bus into town whenever he got bored.

Sackville-West traces the origins and history of forty-four breeds, reflecting on their characteristics with frank humour, from the Father Christmas-moustachioed Schnauzer to the silky gentle-eyed Afghan, 'like somebody's elderly Aunt Lavinia, who nourishes a secret passion for the Vicar', and the elegant and ancient Saluki, 'without a doubt the dullest dog I ever owned'.

Charming and fascinating in equal measure, this collection of profiles is testament to the fact that, 'when one loves dogs, it is difficult not to attribute human qualities to them'.

Hardcover, 80 pages
Publisher: Allen & Unwin, Imprint: Faber Factory Plus, 3rd December 2019

RRP: $19.99 at

A Girl and Her Dog's Tale
by Marita Balto

15-year-old Emma Hanson runs away from her home after having another blow out with her mother. With the help of her brave dog, she finds her way to the Marina on Kangaroo Island - South Australia, where she hides out on her father's sailboat until things cool down at home. 

However, her father, Peter, returns to his sailboat unexpectedly, with the aim to sail to an Indonesian island to stash the gold he and his mining partner, Johnnie, have claimed. Emma and her dog hide below deck as they sail out, fearing repercussions from her father for hiding in his boat.Things take a drastic turn as Peter and his partner get into a drunken altercation and Johnnie kills him and dumps his body overboard. Emma witnesses the murder and when Johnnie falls asleep, she grabs supplies and her dog and sneaks onto the skiff that is in tow. Now lost at sea, with little experience and supplies, Emma must brace herself against the elements and her own demons and prays that she will be rescued. 

But when she washes up on an Indonesian island, she faces new challenges against the harsh tropical conditions. There is more to the island than meets the eye as Emma soon learns and must hide from human traffickers as they smuggle children into Australia. Through it all her dog Cozzie stays with her and fights to protect her. But with dangerous criminals and no way off the island, how will she survive and return home?

Paperback, 152 pages
Publisher: Thorpe-Baker, 20th December 2019

RRP: $32.99 at


EMBER (Rescue Dogs)
by Jane B Mason, Sarah Hines-Stephens

Action and adventure with high stakes and a happy ending - and dogs!

After Ember is rescued from a devastating house fire, she longs for a forever home. But every family that adopts the yellow Labrador puppy brings her back, saying she is untrainable, has too much energy, or is just plain destructive. After three failed placements, young Ember is out of options.

The Sterling family runs a ranch that turns rescued dogs into rescue dogs. They're willing to take a chance on the young Lab, not knowing that Ember's first rescue will test her skills and strength beyond imagination...

Paperback, 304 pages
Publisher: Scholastic Inc., 7th January 2020
For Ages: 8 - 12 years old

RRP: $12.99 at

by Dawn McNiff, Patricia Metola (Illustrator)

Dear Izzy, I’m a Sky Dog now. I live in Dog Heaven, because I died...

When Alfie the dog dies, he sends his owner Izzy letters in the post from his new address: The Nicest Cloud, Dog Heaven, The Sky. He wants her to know that he misses her – so much! – but his new home in heaven is brilliant. There are postmen to chase, angels to tickle his tummy, and he never even has to take a bath!

Can his letters comfort Izzy, who is is feeling lost without him? Sensitively balancing humour and raw emotional truth, this is a beautifully observed tale sure to reassure children experiencing loss and grief for the very first time.

Format: Hardcover, 32 pages
Publisher: Walker Books Ltd, 1st February 2020
For Ages: 3+ years old

RRP: $24.99 from

100 DOGS
by Michael Whaite

* WINNER - Sainsbury's Children's Book Awards- Children's Book of the Year! *
* WINNER - Sainsbury's Children's Book Awards- Best Picture Book! *

Small dog, tall dog, playing with a ball dog, big dog, dig dog burying a bone . . .
Can there really be 100 dogs doing 100 doggy things packed into the pages of this picture book? Yep, we've counted and we're pawsitive!

Follow the bouncy rhyme as it weaves its way through an array of hilarious hounds (from petted pugs to silly sausage dogs) and find out.

This silly celebration of dogs is bursting with funny details to spot and crazy, characterful dogs to fall in love with - a bark-aloud book to return time and again.

Board Book, 32 pages
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd, 7th January 2020
For Ages: 1+ years old

RRP: $14.99 at

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