The Boy and the Dog: A Novel
“An amazing, beautiful book . . . It shows how one dog’s dignified presence can bring connection and love to a fractured world.” ―Cat Warren, New York Times bestselling author of What the Dog Knows
One dog changes the life of everyone who takes him in on his journey to reunite with his first owner in this inspiring novel about the bond between humans and dogs and the life-affirming power of connection.
Dogs had a special relationship to humans. . . . They understood the human heart and were attuned to it in a way no other creature was.
Following a devastating earthquake and tsunami, a young man in Japan finds a stray dog outside a convenience store. The dog’s tag says “Tamon,” a name evocative of the guardian deity of the north. The man decides to keep Tamon, becoming the first in a series of owners on the dog’s five-year journey to find his beloved first owner, Hikaru, a boy who has not spoken since the tsunami. An agent of fate, Tamon is a gift to everyone who welcomes him into their life.
At once heartrending and heartwarming, intimate and panoramic, suspenseful and luminous--and deepened in its emotion by the author’s mastery of the gritty details and hardscrabble circumstances that define the lives of the various people who take Tamon in on his journey--this bestselling, award-winning novel weaves a feel-good tale of survival, resilience, and love beyond measure.
Praise for The Boy and the Dog: A Novel
Winner of the Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation Translation Prize
“A most extraordinary novel . . . An instant classic . . . It feels like The Odyssey . . . but from a dog’s point of view. . . . It really stays with you.” ―NPR’s Dog Talk
“Sure, you may have read a dog-finding-their-way-home story before, but this one is special. . . . [The dog] enchants and helps each of his temporary owners on his way home, and we imagine he’ll do the same for you.” ―Shondaland
“Moving . . . Dog lovers will need no encouragement to pick [it] up.” ―The Sydney Morning Herald
“A delightful read. It’s heartbreaking, it’s funny, it’s sad―it really covers all of the emotions. . . . It’s an incredible novel—I really loved every moment of it.” ―Christopher Hermelin, So Many Damn Books (podcast)
“Much like the love of our dogs, this fable about a lost dog and his epic journey to find home is a gift to us all.” ―Steven Rowley, New York Times bestselling author of Lily and the Octopus and The Celebrants
“A remarkable story of the transformative power of a dog. Like a figure from myth or fable, the dog inspires in the very flawed humans he encounters a desire for a new life, a new chance—and he just may do the same for you.” —Susan Wilson, New York Times bestselling author of One Good Dog
“A must read for any dog lover, this story of companionship, perseverance, and an incredible journey to find a long-lost friend speaks to our canine counterparts’ innate ability to sense the times of our deepest need.” —Ben Moon, author of Denali: A Man, a Dog, and the Friendship of a Lifetime
“A highly original and unsentimental novel about the powerful bond between humans and dogs.” ―Helen Humphreys, author of And a Dog Called Fig
“A preternaturally intelligent dog, but lost all the same, in a tsunami-ravaged Japan, is called many names by many people. Lose yourself in this story of a dog finding his way home, and in the stories of the lives he changes. No one stays the same, least of all the reader.” ―Michelle Latiolais, author of Even Now, Widow, and She
“Heartwarming and suspenseful, detailing true resilience and survival.” ―Belfast Telegraph
“A moving account of a lost dog . . . Inspiring . . . Life-affirming.” —AsiaOne
“Its plain and honest prose . . . allows you to fill in the spaces with your own lived experience, especially if you’ve had a lasting bond with a beloved animal who profoundly changed your life.” —The Waterloo Region Record
“Heartrending . . . Powerfully demonstrates how love and loyalty can overcome obstacles . . . and how a dog’s love can save a person in every possible way.” ―Booklist
“Affecting . . . Moving . . . Never feels sentimental or overdrawn . . . [Seishu Hase] proves himself a gifted storyteller.” ―Publishers Weekly
“Heartbreakingly moving in its simplicity . . . A touching meditation on shining lights in the face of trauma and hopelessness.” ―Kirkus Reviews