Friday, February 14, 2014
Huck by Janet Elder
Living in New York City, the last thing Janet Elder and her husband would consider was getting a dog. It wouldn't be fair to the animal as their hectic lives just wouldn't work for a dog. But it was their son, Michael's, biggest desire. He asked for a dog every birthday and every Christmas and talked about having one incessantly. As much as they loved Michael, they just couldn't budge on their decision.
Then came the news every women dreads. Janet was diagnosed with breast cancer, and she knew she faced months of surgery, chemotherapy and radiation. As she and her husband, Rich, discussed their options, one thing became clear. This was the time that they needed to make Michael's dream come true and give him something to look forward to. They told Michael that after her treatments were over, they would be getting a dog.
That's how Huck came to the family. A little, brown poodle, he fit in immediately. Huck fit in immediately and Michael was his focus. He loved Janet and Rich also, but he bonded with Michael and boy and dog loved each other to distraction. A happy ending to a long felt desire, they all felt.
Then tragedy struck. The family had flown to Florida, both to celebrate the end of Janet's treatment and to take Michael to spring training for the Yankees, his other passion in life. Huck stayed behind with Janet's sister and her family in a suburb. The family had a day or so in the Florida sun when they got a call. Huck had run away and no one could find him.
The rest of the book follows the family's search for Huck. They cut their vacation short, and took the next flight home. They went to the town where the sister lived and everyone's life became a search for the little dog who had brought so much joy to them. Along the way they met many townspeople who helped in ways big and small.
Huck is a book most people can relate to. Most have had a beloved pet somewhere in their life. Many have faced the crisis that a life-threatening disease can bring to a family, and the realization that family and love is our priority in life. This book is recommended for readers looking for a positive message, and those who want to relieve their own experiences with a pet and the love it brings with it.