Canine Connections – HABU (Cyberworld Publishing)

Buy it now from our Amazon.com store – Canine Connections
 

Everyone
has heard the expression that a dog is a man’s best friend. That is especially
true when it comes to gay men. For some it’s a perfect relationship,
unconditional love, never asking for anything in return, and you know they are
not going to cheat on you. Whatever the reason, gay men and dogs are undeniably
connected. Canine Connections is a collection of five short novellas each with
an emphasis of the bonds between a gay man and his dog.

In My Dog Jack, a young man is asked by
his dying father to look after his loyal and trusted pet, Jack. At first the
young man can’t wait to get rid of the last thing that reminds him of his
father, but soon the young man discovers that getting rid of Jack isn’t as easy
as he thought it would be.

In Dire Conditions, Keith quits the
football team and his job to take care of three newborn puppies whose mother
died giving birth. After the death of Keith’s mother, Keith wants one of the
puppies, and to be placed back on the football team. Both the coach and the
breeder have conditions upon Keith’s request, and they have nothing to do with
money.

Saving Cleo is another story of death and
love between a man and a dog. The story begins with Roger mourning the loss of
his younger partner. His late partner’s dog Cleo is all that he has to remember
Craig by. Realizing his own mortality, Roger goes on a quest to find someone to
take care of Cleo once he is gone.

In Tank ’n Bull, a nimble minded semi-pro
football player (Tank) who believes he has what it takes to join a new team in
Nashville sets off on an adventure with his lover’s car and a newly acquired
Pit Bull, obviously named Bull. Through their travels Tanks learns many of
life’s lessons thanks to his canine companion.
 

Amos’s Andy is another journey of a young
man suffering from a loss, and his inability to let go of his love and
attachment to a dog. Through the story he begins to realize that life does go
on and that it can be worth living.

Each of
these stories is well written, and each has their own merits. The characters
are believable and well written, and for the most part the stories are
interesting and enjoyable. The overriding themes of death and loss in this collection
made it a bit one-sided in my opinion. There are many more opportunities to
bond with your dog than on one’s death bed, and I wished the author would have
explored more of these canine connections, to give the collection a bit more variety.

Overall
this is a great collection of stories. If you’ve recently lost your canine
connection you may want to keep a box of tissues handy.

Reviewed by William Holden

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