Book Chat

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oogyIt’s always a pleasure to start out with a book I really enjoyed, and this month,Oogy: The Dog Only a Family Could Love filled the bill. I found this book charming. It’s the story of Oogy, a dog of the breed dogo (I’d never heard of that before either) who had been used as a bait dog as a puppy, and was thus horribly disfigured and left for dead before a caring vet rescued him.

Enter the Levin family, who visited that vet to have their beloved cat put to sleep. They saw Oogy, and the rest is history. The book details the family’s (well, actually mostly the dad’s) efforts to make up for Oogy’s awful beginnings with a wonderful life.

They succeed, and the affection they feel for Oogy just makes you feel warm and fuzzy. It’s a happy story about a very happy ending for one dog.

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she got up off the couchAfter enjoying A Girl Named Zippy last month, I was eager to dig into its sequel, She Got Up Off the Couch: And Other Heroic Acts from Mooreland, Indiana. This book, while still largely about Zippy, also focuses on her mom, who – after 20 years of basically sitting on the couch reading while her loser husband gallivants around town doing not a lot of anything positive – is encouraged by her prayer group to take a test advertised on TV. Lo and behold, she tests out of a full year of college, and she begins taking classes at Ball State. She learns to drive as well, loses 100 pounds, and becomes an academic success. This doesn’t go over so well with her husband, who was happy with the way things were previously. He ends up only reluctantly attending a 25th anniversary celebration, and leaving it early. He also ends up leaving the family.


I’m aware that this sounds like a downer, but the book is beautifully written, and I think almost anyone would enjoy the tale of Zippy and her family.



10 thoughts on “Book Chat

  1. Oogy sounds like a real heartbreaker! The very idea of a bait dog makes my blood boil. I’ll have to investigate this book about a happy ending!

  2. Poor little Oogy. He looks quite a bit the worse for wear.

  3. I appreciate your candid review of Craving Grace because the premise does appeal to me too, but I’d rather not waste my time if the book doesn’t deliver. Thanks for your list!

  4. “She got up…” is my favorite of Kimmel’s books. I’ve recommended it to women afraid to go back to school and to Church book club. All found it both a little depressing, but also ultimately inspiring.

    Sad that Craving Grace misses the mark. Could be great for helping folks with legalism.

  5. I’ll have to check out Oogy. Since it has a happy ending it sounds like something both my teenage daughter and I will enjoy. (Though I’m sure we’ll both cry during parts of it.)

  6. These are all new to me. Poor Oogy — that book sounds like it would make a good movie. Too bad Craving Grace wasn’t as good as hoped — the premise sounds good. I’ve not read Kimmel but that sounds interesting.

  7. I haven’t heard of any of these books but it sounds like you had a good reading month. Hopefully June will be just as fruitful! 🙂

  8. I think I put A Girl Named Zippy on my list last month based on your review–but I KNOW I’m putting She Got Up on my list this month. It sounds like quite a story!

  9. I like the title She Got Up Off the Couch. (Sounds like I need to Get Up Off My Computer Chair Right NOW.)

    And I love your picture in the header here. Now there is a perfectly lovely girl in a white dress!

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