ELLE aka PlantCrone of the Great Pacific Northwest. I enjoy almost every genre-S/F, Action, Biographies and Histories & Romance
Most of the reviews of the written version of "The Dog Stars" on Amazon, many readers disliked this book, primarily because it's without dialog-very little give and take..Instead, it's kind of a train of thought and reminded me of the journaling part in "Dances With Wolves" , though the plot is more "The Stand". It's very much one persons reflections on his life.
The story takes place about a decade after the pandemic that kills most of the life on earth. People band together in small groups-this novel relates the story of a couple of these groups. The primary protagonists are Hig and Bangley-two very different men tho have joined together in mutual support. One is a farmer and a pilot, the other is a survivalist hunter type. They support each other, though they aren't really friends. Other characters come to play in Higs relating of his days events, some important, some not so much.
Mark Denkins's narration made everything that could be made of the story line-without his excellent voice, the book could become tedious, however I had a difficult time really getting into the book-it won't be for everyone...It's not an action/thriller story, not a romance or mystery. It simply related Hig's daily life and various characters interactions with him. Slightly dull-I had a difficult time giving the book a rating.
If you like introspective stories, you might enjoy this-not so much if you are looking for action-there isn't much of that here. It's just different.
My taste differs from kid books to gory horror books.
On The Beach, Deathlands, Several Twilight Zone stories, The Gunslinger, and or One Second After.
Read any of the above listed instead of this. Every writer seems to think they can write the definitive Apocalyptic few people left novel. Many of them are excellent and many are just repeats, that bring nothing new to the table. This is the same old, same old. This is probably closer to Earth Abides then any of the others. This is slow and boring. Do not think this is a Zombie book, it is not. Alas Babylon and On The Road are the best of the group.
Do not listen to all these others and waste your credit, I think they were hypnotized.
The last man on Earth was sitting in a room and there was a knock at the door.
Narrator is good.
I think you'll enjoy this if for nothing else than nodding at the sense of freedom Peter Heller gets from flying. He discusses the Nearest button on the GPS he's got in his 1956 Cessna 182. I'm glad I listened to this book. The print version apparently has unconventional punctuation etc. One star off since I feel, some weeks after finsihing, that the bigger picture in the end is a little off the mark.
More than a survival story. Thought provoking themes of loss, love, and meaning and purpose in living. About friendships & trust. Glad there were not any zombies.
I started reading this book several years ago when it was released. I didn't finish it before starting a new job and have spent years wondering what happened to Hig and if he found what he was seeking.
I finally decided to stop wondering and download it here. I usually listen on my commute or while doing chores. This book is so enchanting I found myself sitting down in the middle of a project so I could focus on the story.
Hig is a fantastic character. He's manly, but not hard. You wouldn't exactly call him a wimp, but he and his dog, Jasper, are unlikely survivors of an apocalypse. At least Hig managed to keep himself alive long enough to team up with a fanatic that makes Clint Eastwood look like a sissy. Bangley is a GREAT character. He's mean, hard, insane, and by the time Hig left for his big adventure I completely loved him.
Hig survived the flu that wiped out most of the world, but he didn't get out unscathed. He lost his pregnant wife and the fever altered his brain function though his intelligence in intact. Hig's narration. of the story is broken and sometimes travels in weird patterns as a result. As the book progresses, this is less noticeable though. Does Hig change that much or does the reader become accustomed to the strange thought pattern? It's hard to say.
This is a fantastic story of humanity. I laughed, I cried, and I'll be thinking about the story for days.
I loved The Dog Stars. It felt like a fresh take on a post apocalyptic world (a flu variation wiped out most of humanity). This first person narrative focused more on the narrator's state of mind, past and present. This story transplanted me to his world. While there are scenes of action and violence, they are few and far between, with the horror of the world being more psychological. It's a tale of Hig, his beloved dog, his airplane, and his brilliant and angry survivalist partner Bangley. I was fascinated with the relationship between Hig and Bangley. While there were some times when the narration was a little over-the-top wistful, I still loved this book. It has stayed with me in a way that few books do. This lends itself especially well to the audio format. This had a bit of the feel of The Road by Cormac McCarthy, with The Dog Stars being more engaging.
I lived inside this story for days, relishing every word, character and image. It was a shock when the voice went silent. And for once, I felt like saying: Yes, thank you, Audible - I did enjoy this program.
If you enjoy excellent writing and the post-apocalyptic genre, this is a must. I didn't have terribly high expectations, but if I did, this book would have exceeded them. The best book I've listened to since Cutting for Stone, and I listen to a LOT of books (I have to do the "buy 3 credits now" before my credits come in each month) . The prose, with absolutely excellent narration, felt to my ears like melted butter on homemade muffins feels to my mouth. I devoured it. I adore being read to sleep, but this book could cure narcolepsy. I listened though sleep, while driving and was completely distracted from work.
Told as a single narrative, The Dog Stars is an intriguing story which grabs and pulls you in. A great story, expertly told.
There is no Frigate like a Book To take us Lands away Nor any Coursers like a Page Of prancing Poetry – Emily Dickinson
I loved the writing in The Dog Stars! The author did such a great job of evoking the main character’s personality. Hig was a combination of an outdoorsman and “man’s man,” and then also a poet and philosopher. He was sensitive and often compassionate; I really loved his character.
The Dog Stars reminded me of “The Little Prince” in which the narrator flies around the world in his airplane, is stranded in the desert, and meets the little prince who expounds on the beauties and also the frailties of the world. Like The Little Prince, The Dog Stars presents a lesson about life. This famous line from The Little Prince is really the theme of that book: "One sees clearly only with the heart. What is essential is invisible to the eye." In the Dog Stars, it seems like the apocalypse has made Hig’s past life “invisible, “ and somehow allowed him to live more in the present, appreciating every small beauty, like the little prince said! Hig is has a poetic nature anyway, and so his observations throughout the book are poignant and touching.
At the end of The Little Prince, the prince tells the narrator that when he leaves it will make the narrator sad, but it will be consoling to look at the stars and think of the prince's lovable laughter, and that it will seem as if all the stars are laughing. It seems like Hig uses the stars in this way, as a sort of consolation, and that the name of the book refers to the nostalgia and beauty in the memories of all the stars he has named that console him in his current, post apocalyptic life.
The Dog Stars is the type of sci-fi that I like. I think you could call this science fiction in that it takes one aspect of the world today and fictionalizes it, but still lets all the characters interact in totally realistic way, and the lessons learned apply to us today in the real world. All the ruminations that Hig dished out over the course of the book seemed to be useful not only in a post apocalyptic world, but also in our modern day world.
I loved Hig’s relationship with Bingley. They are forced together, and they both learn from each other. The evolution of Bingley’s character is interesting and heartwarming.