A middle-aged, overweight, and acrophobic newspaper editor Tom Ryan and a little dog, Atticus M. Finch, are an unlikely pair of mountaineers, but after a close friend dies of cancer, the two pay tribute to her by attempting to climb all forty-eight of New Hampshire's four-thousand-foot peaks twice in one winter. Tom and Atticus set out on an adventure of a lifetime that takes them across hundreds of miles and deep into an enchanting but dangerous winter wonderland. Little did they know that their most difficult test would lie ahead, after they returned home. Following Atticus is ultimately a story of transformation....
"More Than Just Man/Man's Best Friend!"
Drawn by an online post, Tom Ryan adopted Will, a frightened, deaf, and mostly blind elderly dog, and brought him home to live with him and Atticus. The only owners Will ever knew had grown too fragile to take care of themselves, or of him. Ultimately, Will was left at a kill shelter in New Jersey. Tom hoped to give Will a place to die with dignity, amid the rustic beauty of the White Mountains of his New Hampshire home. But when Will bites him numerous times and acts out in violent displays, Tom realizes he is in for a challenge.
"How Bad Is It?", by John Cassidy; "Leap of Faith", by Ryan Lizza; "Voicebox 360", by Tom Bissell; "Is That All There Is?", by James Wood; and "Maids of Honor", by David Denby.