My sister read this book when it first released and upon finishing it, she exclaimed that I had to read it. “You know that the dog is going to die and you prepare and brace yourself for the inevitable…and then you end up crying at the end anyway.”
(image from Harper Collins)
I was intrigued, but I didn’t bite. Don’t get me wrong – I love dogs. I love animals and I’ve spoiled all the pets I’ve had over the years. However, the thought of reading about falling in love with a dog only to lose him (which I’ve been through twice) made me queasy and uncomfortable.
Months passed, and I continued to see the book everywhere. On subways. On the train ride home. In book store displays. I even read that the book was being adapted into a movie starring Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston.
So, per my usual fashion, I googled the book and found the website devoted to Marley http://www.marleyandme.com/. As I went through the photos and the user-submitted stories and testimonials, my heart melted. Here’s an excerpt from the “About the Book” section of the website:
The heartwarming and unforgettable story of a family in the making and the wondrously neurotic dog who taught them what really matters in life.
John and Jenny were just beginning their life together. They were young and in love, with a perfect little house and not a care in the world. Then they brought home Marley, a wiggly yellow furball of a puppy. Life would never be the same.
The next time I was at Borders (which is pretty often considering there’s one downstairs from my office and I lov books) I picked up a copy and began reading on my long commute home.
I was smitten.
I won’t write any more about the plot or the specifics of the book, because John Grogan does such a wonderful job of communicating every sweet detail of his family’s life with Marley…I just wouldn’t be able to compare.
I finished the book a few days later on the train home. At this point I started crying like a little bitch and I couldn’t stop. I apologize to the poor commuters who were within earshot of the sobbing little Asian girl that night.
Anyone who has half a heart would love this book. Anyone who has had a pet, especially a dog, needs to read this book.