3 out of 4 stars
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The mere thought of a road trip is always guaranteed to rekindle fond memories for me. The different strange locations, the new and exciting people I get to meet, and best of all, the new memories I create with loved ones on each of these adventures make these trips memorable. Carolyn West Meyer tells us about her vacations with her husband, Kel, and her two pet dogs, Miss Bea and Black B.B. She opens her heart to us about her feelings for her girls, as she affectionately calls the dogs, and her best efforts to share her experiences on the road with them over four individually exciting vacations. Each trip is carefully planned out, but things don't always go as planned, you know.
Book One: The First Four Dog Vacations by Carolyn West Meyer took me right back to my childhood days, hopping across cities with my parents or friends during the school holiday season. The experience of getting to bring my pet along during those vacations is one I never had. However, I fully understand Carolyn West Meyer's emotional attachment to her pets, Having been a dog owner for over two decades. Like a mother wanting always to protect her babies, she realizes she cannot afford to leave them alone for too long. So, she creates the space for them to inject themselves into her holiday schedule. She dotes over them and entertains herself with their canine antics, adding more than a serving of comic relief to the narrative she shares.
The novelty of a pet-focused vacation and the excitement that comes with planning for specific animal needs cannot be imagined. Kudos must be given to the author for the extensive effort she put into the detailed chronicling of the daily events of each vacation. You need to have a pet to understand how difficult this can be. The "skunking" incident, in particular, brought tears of laughter to my eyes and reminded me that no matter how outlandish my emergency plans can get, there would always be room for improvement. Having experienced my share of unimaginable canine calamity, I was very keen to learn how they resolved that particular problem and the steps they took to prevent a repeat occurrence.
What's there not to love about this book? It pushes the boundaries of one's imagination with the sights and sounds of the different locations, peppered with a sampling of their rich history. Doing all these while reminding the reader that the author is focused on her pets sharing her experiences is truly impressive. You are guaranteed to stay interested in this book from the first page to the last.
Pet owners will enjoy this book. I also recommend it to individuals thinking of getting their first pet but haven't yet taken that big step. It will give them insight into the scale of responsibility involved in caring for an animal. This book is refreshingly different from your typical pet-inspired tale. If not for the number of errors, it deserves a perfect rating, as there's nothing else for which to fault the book. Sadly, I rate this book 3 out of 4 stars.
Book One: The First Four Dog Vacations
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