The Story of Rose: A Man and His Dog

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From the acclaimed author of A Good Dog, Dog Days, and Going Home comes this eBook original—a poignant memoir that celebrates Jon Katz’s beloved border collie, Rose, and their transformative years together on Bedlam Farm.
 
“I like to say you get the dog you need,” Jon Katz writes, “and I don’t think any human ever needed a dog more than I needed Rose in the fall of 2003.” That year, Katz embarked on a quixotic quest, moving from the suburbs of New Jersey to a sprawling farm in upstate New York to pursue his dream of becoming a writer. And by his side was Rose, his unswervingly loyal and unflappable new dog.
 
Whether herding sheep on the rolling hillsides, rounding up the neighbors’ stray cows, or rescuing lambs on a freezing winter night, Rose had a nimble mind and a great love for work. Never wanting to be coddled, she watched over Bedlam Farm with singular focus and efficiency, protecting Katz and his menagerie from wild coyotes and menacing storms. Yet Rose saved Katz in more ways than he ever imagined. As he struggled to manage the farm’s daily dramas—and continued to seek his true sense of purpose—Rose connected him to his deeper humanity and a more authentic life. 
 
With warmth, insight, and emotional honesty, Jon Katz has written a joyful remembrance of a one-of-a-kind dog. The Story of Rose reaffirms the profound bond people share with their pets, and the ways that animals indelibly shape our lives.
 
“Jon Katz understands dogs as few others do, intuitively and unburdened by sentimentality. . . . With wisdom and grace, he unlocks the canine soul and the complicated wonders that lie within and offers powerful insights.”—John Grogan, author of Marley & Me
 
Includes moving excerpts from Going Home, and from Jon Katz’s upcoming short-story collection, Dancing Dogs.
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More by Jon Katz

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Jon Katz
In this heartfelt, thoughtful, and inspiring memoir, New York Times bestselling author Jon Katz tells the story of his beloved rescue donkey, Simon, and the wondrous ways that animals make us wiser and kinder people.
 
In the spring of 2011, Jon Katz received a phone call that would challenge every idea he ever had about mercy and compassion. An animal control officer had found a neglected donkey on a farm in upstate New York, and she hoped that Jon and his wife, Maria, would be willing to adopt him. Jon wasn’t planning to add another animal to his home on Bedlam Farm, certainly not a very sick donkey. But the moment he saw the wrenching sight of Simon, he felt a powerful connection. Simon touched something very deep inside of him. Jon and Maria decided to take him in.
 
Simon’s recovery was far from easy. Weak and malnourished, he needed near constant care, but Jon was determined to help him heal. As Simon’s health improved, Jon would feed him by hand, read to him, take him on walks, even confide in him like an old and trusted friend. Then, miraculously, as if in reciprocation, Simon began to reveal to Jon the true meaning of compassion, the ways in which it can transform our lives and inspire us to take great risks.
 
This radically different perspective on kindness and empathy led Jon to a troubled border collie from Ireland in need of a home, a blind pony who had lived outside in a pasture for fifteen years, and a new farm for him and Maria. In the great tradition of heroes—from Don Quixote to Shrek—who faced the world in the company of their donkeys, Jon came to understand compassion and mercy in a new light, learning to open up “not just to Simon, not just to animals, but to the human experience. To love, to risk, to friendship.”
 
With grace, warmth, and keen emotional insight, Saving Simon plumbs the depths of the bonds we form with our animals, and the rewards of “living a more compassionate, considered, and meaningful life.”

Praise for Saving Simon
 
“Heartwarming . . . a touching tale.”—USA Today
 
“Highly recommended . . . an enjoyable and thoughtful work.”—Library Journal (starred review)
 
“[Saving Simon] handles the emotional highs and lows of living with animals with empathy and thoughtfulness, forcing readers to re-examine their own meanings of compassion and mercy.”—Kirkus Reviews
 
“The message of this true story will linger with the reader long after the book has been placed on the shelf.”—Bookreporter
 
“[An] uplifting and insightful memoir . . . Katz’s fans and animal lovers of all kinds will no doubt be delighted by Simon’s heartwarming story.”—Publishers Weekly
 
Praise for Jon Katz
 
“With wisdom and grace, Katz unlocks the canine soul and the complicated wonders that lie within and offers powerful insights to anyone who has ever struggled with, and loved, a troubled animal.”—John Grogan, author of Marley & Me
 
“Katz’s world—of animals and humans and their combined generosity of spirit—is a place you’re glad you’ve been.”—The Boston Globe
 
“From Toto to Marley, our canine friends are a sure bet in the literary biz. But no one seems to speak their language like Jon Katz.”—San Antonio Express-News


From the Hardcover edition.

Reviews

4.7
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Additional Information

Publisher
Ballantine Books
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Published on
Aug 6, 2012
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Pages
125
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ISBN
9780345542656
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Features
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Language
English
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Genres
Biography & Autobiography / Personal Memoirs
Pets / Dogs / General
Pets / Essays & Narratives
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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Alexandra Horowitz
The bestselling book that asks what dogs know and how they think. The answers will surprise and delight you as Alexandra Horowitz, a cognitive scientist, explains how dogs perceive their daily worlds, each other, and that other quirky animal, the human.

Horowitz introduces the reader to dogs’ perceptual and cognitive abilities and then draws a picture of what it might be like to be a dog. What’s it like to be able to smell not just every bit of open food in the house but also to smell sadness in humans, or even the passage of time? How does a tiny dog manage to play successfully with a Great Dane? What is it like to hear the bodily vibrations of insects or the hum of a fluorescent light? Why must a person on a bicycle be chased? What’s it like to use your mouth as a hand? In short, what is it like for a dog to experience life from two feet off the ground, amidst the smells of the sidewalk, gazing at our ankles or knees?

Inside of a Dog explains these things and much more. The answers can be surprising—once we set aside our natural inclination to anthropomorphize dogs. Inside of a Dog also contains up-to-the-minute research—on dogs’ detection of disease, the secrets of their tails, and their skill at reading our attention—that Horowitz puts into useful context. Although not a formal training guide, Inside of a Dog has practical application for dog lovers interested in understanding why their dogs do what they do. With a light touch and the weight of science behind her, Alexandra Horowitz examines the animal we think we know best but may actually understand the least. This book is as close as you can get to knowing about dogs without being a dog yourself.
Jon Katz
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

BONUS: This edition contains an excerpt from Jon Katz's Going Home.

In his previous books, New York Times bestselling author Jon Katz introduced us to the delightful menagerie at Bedlam Farm, including Izzy, the unforgettable border collie rescue. Now, in Izzy & Lenore, Katz delves deeper into his connection with the beautiful, once-abandoned dog, learning yet again about the unexpected places animals can take us. Affectionate and intuitive, Izzy is unlike any dog Katz has encountered, and the two undertake a journey Katz could not have imagined without the arrival of a new companion: a spirited, bright-eyed black Labrador puppy named Lenore.

As trained hospice volunteers visiting homes and nursing facilities in upstate New York, Katz and Izzy bring comfort and canine companionship to people who most need it. An eighty-year-old Alzheimer’s patient smiles for the first time in months when she feels Izzy’s soft fur. A retired logger joyfully remembers his own beloved dog when he sees Izzy. As Izzy bonds with patients and Katz focuses on their families, the author begins to come to terms with his own life, discovering dark realities he has never confronted. Meanwhile, Lenore–quickly dubbed the Hound of Love–arrives at Bedlam. Her genial personality and boundless capacity for affection steer Katz out of the shadows, rekindle his love of working with dogs, and restore his connection to the farm and the animals and people around him.

Humorous and deeply moving, Izzy & Lenore is a story of a man confronting his past, embracing the blessings of his current life, and rediscovering the meaning of friendship, family, and faith. Katz shares an uplifting tale of love, compassion, and the rich and complex relationships between dogs and their humans.
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