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The $60,000 Dog: My Life With Animals (2013)

by Lauren Slater(Favorite Author)
3 of 5 Votes: 4
0807001910 (ISBN13: 9780807001912)
Beacon Press
review 1: In this book Lauren Slater writes, in a series of essays, about the ways in which her life has intersected with animals. The $60,000 dog of the title is her Shiba Inu, Lila, who went blind with glaucoma; at one point, Slater's husband figured out that the dog, with her medications and vet bills, cost them $60,000 a year.I wanted to like this book more, but I was let down by my own expectations. I thought the book would be more about animals and less about people, and that's kind of what I was looking for at the time.
review 2: I won my copy from Goodreads Giveaways!I really enjoyed this, but I have to caution people from being misled by the title. As intriguing as the title "The $60,000 Dog" sounds, Slater's writing is far from centered around dogs, or any sort
... more of in-depth analysis of the cost of "pets" on our society. That kind of article would be better suited for an interest magazine piece or research paper assignment at your local university. And the subtitle "My Life with Animals," although broad, does not truly convey what the reader is picking up when they delve into Slater's pages. Slater's work is a new kind of autobiography. The kind that manages to convey events both through a child's eyes and with adult meaning and sensitivity. If I had to describe the book in one word it would be just that: sensitive. Although others may find it neurotic, I believe that opinion would come from a reader who has not experienced depression that can take you down the rabbit hole of your own mind and leave you shaking in the darkness. Slater's writing is so nuanced you can taste smoke on your tongue and see the living AND dying cells within the network of your own skin, and yet she still manages to appreciate what she still does not know, and quite possibly, what she will never know. I applaud Slater for opening herself up in such a truthful way; admitting to her fears, questions, and acknowledging her pain. So where are the animals? - you might be wondering. Animals are tools, teachers, and conduits through Slater's life, but I would not consider them the main focus of the book. At the center of everything is Slater (as we each are the principal of our own story). And her prose is filled with "quotable quotes" that question humanity's purpose and very existence.I would recommend this book for those interested in exploring the philosophical side of life and considering how animals help us better understand ourselves and the world around us. Not everyone can appreciate the lessons animals provide to us, and not everyone respects the nature of Slater's musings. But for me, her style of writing, her sensitivity to her surroundings and other beings who occupy the same space, all were considerations I enjoyed hearing articulated. Happy Reading! less
Reviews (see all)
I didn't really care for this book. Judging by the title, I was hoping for a much different story.
good storytelling, but not very exciting,went on for too long in some parts.
didn't finish it. what I did read was nice, I just lost interest.
Won in a Goodreads first reads giveaway. Review to come.
4.5 stars. Beautifully written memoir.
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