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The Thing Is by Kathleen Gerard

The Thing Is (edition 2015)

by Kathleen Gerard (Author)

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431,664,912 (4.25)None
Title:The Thing Is
Authors:Kathleen Gerard (Author)
Info:Red Adept Publishing (2015), Edition: 1, 276 pages
Collections:Your library

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The Thing Is by Kathleen Gerard

2016 (1) depression (1) dog stories (1) elderly (1) fiction (1) G (1) hope (1)



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Sometimes life throws things at us that we are not sure we know how to handle or if we are suited to do so. And such is life for Meredith, who, one day, suddenly finds herself responsible for a four-legged furball for the foreseeable future.
The thing is…she’s not a dog person.

In her latest novel, The Thing Is, Kathleen Gerard spins a delightful tale of humor and suspense, with a little bit of dog hair and drama. Meredith, a reclusive best-selling author, is chosen to care for Prozac – his person, Helen Hendrix, is convalescing in a home, recovering from a foot injury.

Meredith has absolutely no desire to take care of a dog, after all – she’s not a dog person. She doesn’t have the experience, the time, the ambition, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. She attempts every excuse she can muster until all attempts fail and she finds herself stuck with a five-pound terrier who has seemingly taken over her life.

After losing her fiancé one tragic evening a few years prior, she is resistant to even welcoming the pooch into her home, let alone her heart. Meredith quickly discovers that she is to not only feed, bathe, walk and care for a dog, she is to also adhere to his strict schedule as a therapy dog – Prozac spends a large portion of his life visiting and soothing the residents at Evergreen Gardens, a church turned assisted living facility.

Quickly finding herself amidst a whirlwind of octogenarian drama, suspense, and a lot of really good humor, she discovers that Prozac has a very rigorous schedule he must adhere to, for these residents take it very seriously. Weeks pass, hilarity ensues and then tragedy strikes – Prozac escapes.

This heartfelt novel is a definite page turner for anyone who has ever had the pleasure of loving a dog. There is something to be said for the unconditional love animals share with their human – even if it is unrequited. Prozac and Meredith find each other in depressing point in both their lives – Meredith, who has lost her person, her soulmate, her love. And Prozac, who has found himself alongside a self-proclaimed dog hater and is missing his person, his caretaker.
While it is often difficult to pick up a novel about animals – seeing as how most end in tragedy and leave the reader sobbing over the loss of a fictitious pet – this novel is a must read. Gerard has painted such a lovely story – the reader is tempted to laugh and cry all at once. Besides, Prozac tells part of the story, so we finally get to hear it from the dog’s point of view.

Guest Review by Kate Kelly ( )
  celticlady53 | Jun 24, 2016 |
I picked up this book because I love dogs, I was not disappointed, I loved this book. This is an amazing, story with two main characters - Meredith (a depressed author) and Prozac (a yorkie who is really a spriritual guide dog)! Meredith is an author who was with her fiancé when he was killed by a punk who threw a chunk of concrete at him as they were leaving the restaurant where they’d been celebrating her birthday. She’s never really recovered and is seriously depressed and a loner. She also seems to have writer's block. Her sister, Monica, has been trying to get her to come back to the land of the living. When one of Monica's clients ends up in the hospital, she hoodwinks Meredith into looking after her Yorkshire terrier, Prozac, who is a Therapy Dog. Little did they know he’s a Spirit Guide Dog sent to help them all.

The story is told from the points of view of both main characters. Some of Prozac's chapters are absolutely laugh out loud and his comments are quite insightful. The secondary characters are also well developed and have distinct personalities. I loved Judge Thea, who strong arms Meredith into bringing Prozac for his weekly therapy visits. The various residents of the Retirement Home give a very realistic view of this generation trying to come to grips with their new limitations.

It is a great read, showing the journey through grief to life after the death of a beloved partner. Using Prozac to bring out the emotions in the various characters was a great technique. All the characters in this book were realistic with real everyday problems. I think we could all do with a Spirit Guide at some point in our lives, whether a dog or other animal.

This story was extremely well written. It grabbed my attention and held it right to the end. The characters were interesting, real and likeable/loveable. Prozac was the type of dog that everyone can relate to and want to hug or pet. I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys wonderful stories about new beginnings, relationships and of course animals.

I received a copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. ( )
  Carlathelibrarian | Apr 6, 2016 |
Kathleen Gerard has written a quirky, charming and heart touching story about a woman named Meredith who is lost because of her grief; and a very wise little dog named Prozac that is placed in her care. Prozac’s job, just like his namesake, is to bring Meredith out of her depression and back into the land of the living. He does this with some help of a bunch of cantankerous elderly residents in an independent living facility that he visits as a therapy dog. Their “living life to the fullest” attitudes are a perfect contrast to Meredith’s “just waiting to die” depression and Prozac keeps all of them on their toes.

Written from 2 view points the reader gets to see what Prozac is experiencing and feeling and how Meredith makes sense out of what she’s going through. I found myself laughing out loud a few times, and shedding a few tears at the surprising ending. I would give you some quotes but I read an uncorrected proof so I don’t know what is in the polished copy that was just published. This novel is a very enjoyable read, by a talented author who loves dogs like I do. 4 stars ( )
  PamelaBarrett | Apr 1, 2016 |
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