Title: Dog Days
Author: Ericka Waller
Publication Date: 11th March 2021
George is very angry. His wife has upped and died on him, and all he wants to do is sit in his underpants and shout at the cricket. The last thing he needs is his cake-baking neighbour Betty trying to rescue him. And then there’s the dog, a dachshund puppy called Poppy. George doesn’t want a dog – he wants a fight.
Dan is a counsellor with OCD who is great at helping other people – if only he were better at helping himself. His most meaningful relationship so far is with his labrador Fitz. But then comes a therapy session that will change his life.
Lizzie is living in a women’s refuge with her son Lenny. Her body is covered in scars and she has shut herself off from everyone around her. But when she is forced to walk the refuge’s fat terrier, Maud, a new life beckons – if she can keep her secret just a while longer…
Dog Days is a novel about those small but life-changing moments that only come when we pause to let the light in. It is about three people learning to make connections and find joy in living life off the leash.
I am a little bit dog obsessed so as soon as I read the blurb of Dog Days and saw the gorgeous cover I was extremely excited to read it! I can confirm it is just as brilliant as I had hoped and furthermore, an intensely moving read. The story follows three very different people – elderly and cantankerous George who has recently lost his beloved wife, anxious counsellor Dan who struggles with romantic relationships but finds his life turned upside down when he meets the charming Atticus and Lizzie, a secretive, intelligent and complicated woman living in a women’s refuge with her son. We follow them (and their dogs!) as they all experience joy, loss and deal with the complexities of life.
Dog Days really got to me, I laughed and cried throughout and I genuinely cannot recommend it highly enough. This book is at its core about being human and about healing. You definitely do not have to be a dog lover to appreciate the emotion and sensitivity in this book but if you do understand just how much impact and love a dog can bring into the life of someone, especially someone struggling then you will totally recognise the feelings this story provokes. There is a quietness to Dog Days which is truly beautiful. It is subtle in its delivery but so incredibly powerful at the same time which is impressive. It tackles some very weighty subjects and goes to some dark places and yet never feels depressing at all. I think this is because there is so much care taken all the way through to deal with the darker moments with intelligence and sensitivity. Another aspect of Dog Days I loved is that it covers so many different types of relationship. There is romance but there’s also friendship and family which are given just as much weight and importance. Every relationship feels so genuine and authentic in a way that makes the reader completely invest in the lives of these characters. I honestly think that every reader of Dog Days will find something to relate to and understand within it which is what makes is such an incredibly special book which I highly recommend.
Thank you so much to Anne Cater of Random Things Blog Tours for inviting me on this tour and organising it. I kindly received a copy of the book from the publisher. My review is entirely my own honest opinion.