May 26 • 12:11 PM

We can learn a great deal from animals

September 17, 2008
On the first two or three pages of a book that are captioned 'preface' or 'prologue,' Sy Montgomery's "The Good Good Pig" is instead captioned "Praise for The Good Good Pig."

Jill Hough was in our Henry Stephens Memorial Library the day I was dropping off "Merle's Door" Lessons from a Freethinking Dog, by Ted Karasote. A great story about Ted and Merle finding each other. Many, many laughs as Ted interpreted what Merle was saying. However, if you don't like to cry while reading a book, don't read the last chapter, Chapter 18, "Through the Door." But, you really have to if you share the true love of a dog as Daisy and I do.

Jill and I love animals. One time she lent me her horse to take on one of our Elk Hill, week-long camping trips on the Pigeon River near Vanderbilt when I was without a horse, for a reason I can't recall. When I moved from the farm recently, she adopted my big, grey cat Jigs. That day at the Library she suggested a book, "The Good Good Pig.'' Why would a young lady with a Doctorate be reading a book about a pig, I asked myself.

After reading the Praises, I put the tail-end of settling- in at my new apartment on Kidder Road on hold and spent part of the weekend reading. I did take time out Saturday to go to the annual Prayer Breakfast for United Methodist Women in Lexington, for which daughter-in-law Lynda was in charge. She did a good job. Of course, I went to church this morning.

I will share a couple of the praises and you will rush to get the book about the pig, "Christopher Hogwood." Vicki Croke, author of "The Lady and the Panda" wrote,

"Move over, Wilbur, there's a new pig on the block. Sy Montgomery has conjured a pure classic for the animal lover's soul. Poetic, insightful, funny, and deeply moving. The Good Good Pig is as hard to define as it is to put down."

John Grogan, author of "Marley & Me," a dog story, is waiting for me to read next. Then back to you, messy apartment ... maybe ... 'cause I have "Benji and Me" by Joe Camp to read also. I read his "The Soul of a Horse" a couple of weeks ago. John Grogan has this to say about The Good Good Pig. "This is a book not so much about a barnyard animal as about relationships, in all their messy, joyous, and heartbreaking complexity. In loving yet unsentimental prose, Sy Montgomery captures the richness that animals bring to the human experience. The Good Good Pig is a good good book, beautifully rendered and filled with wondrous surprises." To me, some of which were the color pictures of Christopher Hogwood. Guess that is the kid in me, I like to have pictures. And now I know why Jill loved the book.

— A True

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