From the first day, George proved himself possessed of two utterly disarming traits: an insatiable intellectual curiosity and a love for Italian leather shoes that bordered on the fanatical, even for a fox terrier.
I had found a soul mate.
This said, after he most deliberately—and ironically—devoured a pair of Ferragamo kitten heels, decisive action was needed. I made for the library in search of a training manual.
After explaining my plight to my librarian (an encyclopedic woman), I returned with Animals in Translation by Temple Grandin and Catherine Johnson. I settled into a chair, George at my side softly smacking on a shoe strap.
As I read, small hairs on my arms rose to attention. A singular and not unwelcome thought arose as well: a dog is a sentient being. I glanced down and met George’s eloquent black eyes. Italian leather be damned, I thought.
Am I grateful for that book?
I know George is.
For more authors on more books they are grateful for, see the November/December 2011 issue of The Horn Book Magazine.