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by Louise Bernikow

A woman meets an amber-eyed, sixty-pound boxer in a city park and falls in love. Their first year honeymoon was a discovery of each other's idiosyncrasies-morning dog or evening dog? Television watcher or reader? Then life settles into routine and the once rebelliously high-spirited, independent woman and her bilingual comedian of a dog realize that they're “happily stuck with each other.” In this witty, sharp memoir, Louise Bernikow charts eight years with Libro the boxer as they travel through Manhattan...and that thing called Life. From book tours to beach houses, from Libro's training as pet therapist after 9/11 to his escapades on the campaign trail, Louise plays “Jack” to Libro's “Jackie.” But as Louise all too soon discovers, the stray she rescued is domesticating her. A book about a modern family of two, about joy and grief, and realizing that the life you've made (even if it doesn't include a wedding ring) is more than enough, Dreaming in Libro will bring a wagging tail to any reader.
Download Dreaming in Libro: How A Good Dog Tamed A Bad Woman epub
ISBN: 073821096X
ISBN13: 978-0738210964
Category: Biographies
Subcategory: Regional U.S.
Author: Louise Bernikow
Language: English
Publisher: Da Capo Press; First Edition edition (June 11, 2007)
Pages: 216 pages
ePUB size: 1397 kb
FB2 size: 1784 kb
Rating: 4.4
Votes: 541
Other Formats: azw rtf doc txt

I have not read the first book Bernikow wrote about her relationship with Libro and suggest that the reader do that before reading this one, however, the second book can stand alone and is a splendid work by a woman about her dog. Bernikow perfectly captures the essence of Libro's canine personality and what a dog he is! Sadly he did not live long enough; I finished the book wondering if the writer would ever find another partner as well-suited to her as Libro, and I mean partner of any kind, not just the dog kind. I plan to read the first book now to see what I missed about the first year.
If you have a boxer, if you love that dog, if you love any dog, this is a must read book for you.
I have read both books . Bark If You Love Me and Dreaming In Libro. Loved them both. Like her style of writing.
I am not a "dog person". True, I was seen with one for several years in my last marriage because my beloved stepson, who never asked for anything, uttered the fatal words, "I don't want a dog, I need a dog." This time around, our daughter is on notice. No pets. Ever. Unhappy? Save it for the shrink.

Louise Bernikow was, when I was hanging out with her some decades ago, very much not a "dog person". A noted journalist and feminist historian, she was the fiercest woman I knew in New York: annoyingly smart, achingly attractive, a bachelorette to the death.

And that wasn't just my take.

Louise Bernikow would be the first to tell you that she has done her share of dancing on tables. She has kissed a date good night --- and raced out for a nightcap with his brother. And in the days when she owned a car, she writes, "I carried a nightgown, birth control and my passport in the trunk... ready to leave for Paris at a moment's notice."

But as she was jogging in Riverside Park one spring afternoon, she spotted a crowd. In its center, a police car. And, in the back seat, the cause of the fuss: a purebred boxed with a stumpy tail and "those eyes".

Inexplicably, she took him home.

Louise and Libro's "getting to know you" period is described in her first "dog" book, 'Bark If You Love Me. I did not read it for the simple fact that I could not believe Louise wrote it. Friends told me how charming it was, how well written, how very Louise; nothing would lure me.

Now Louise Bernikow has a second "dog" memoir. Again, friends banged on about it. This time, the combination of an appealing subtitle and personal nostalgia got me to peek inside. Great first sentence: "My mother always told me I would grow into my feet and my nose." And the "how we met" story wasn't bad. Before I knew it, I was reading --- and I was appalled.

Here is Louise, padding around on all fours beside her dog ("partly for knowledge of his spatial perspective").

Here is Louise, babbling to her dog "like an infatuated nincompoop."

Here is Louise, once capable of leaving her apartment and not coming home for days, now rushing home at Swiss-watch intervals and climbing four flights of stairs to feed and walk her dog.

As I say, appalling.

But also, here is Louise jabbing me in the eye with perceptions that dog owners have never shared with me. "Perhaps what animal lovers really love is access to their own tenderness," she writes. And: "Just because a man is nice to his dog doesn't mean he is a nice man."

As I kept reading, the ratio of treacle to smart changed. Smart won, paw's down. Because although it seemed like madness for Louise to treat Libro as if he were human, Libro was clearly an advanced being --- Louie's personal guru, as it turns out.

There are wonderful chapters here: Louise's book tour in California, Libro in tow, is a hoot, and lucky are those who showed up at bookstores to catch their double act. And there is something charming about a woman who relaxes her search for love with a man because she's already found it with a dog.

One argument about pets is that you are likely to survive them --- and then you have to deal with the grief. Not so fast, in this case. Louise gets cancer, and this time, it's the dog who/that has to adjust. And then, later.....

But I don't want to suggest that this is the 'Death Be Not Proud' of the canine brigade. `Dreaming in Libro' is, for most of its breezy, 202 pages, an unleashed romp in the park. Dog lovers who read it will be nodding like bobbleheads. Cat lovers will be jealous as...oh...cats.
Musical Aura Island
I am a dog lover. Much like the author, I didn't really know how much until I became a dog "owner"... Louise Bernikow prefers another label, "friend" or "companion." The story is about "her" relationship with boxer "Libro." It is very fun to watch her go through the process of appreciating a life with a dog. How close they do become. How much she becomes devoted to her dog. How much fun they have together. Having a dog in her life changed her, gave her something to be responsible to, something to love.
Having to come home from the movies earlier, leaving a holiday gathering to check on Libro, the daily routine, and the care and true concern she shows as his "guardian" is heartwarming.
I have two dogs that I absolutely adore. It is a wonder, the things they do, and how they fit into your life. It is very rewarding to read how it is for someone else too.
I enjoyed this book, and if you have a sweet relationship with a canine, you would probably like it too.
While I might not be the most objective critic, having known both the star of the book and being part of the story (the best parts by the way!) I found this delightful tale a real tail wagger, even better than the live version. Poko would agree by the way--my Dalmatian, who thumped quite enthusiastically at the parts I read to him.

There are not many books that you read and then rush to read aloud to someone else because they are so funny. This book is full of such moments. (Yes, I did read bits aloud to humans, as well). I won't spoil the reading by my telling--I hate reviews like that. I will say the two things I love about this book: the writing--it is wonderful, witty, and winsome--and the dogs. Libro is a Buddha in brindle coat. And of course my own pooches, spotted Buddhas who watch over me, one from the other side and one from my bed side (when he's not sneaking into it!).

Now I have thought of a third thing I love--the relationship between author and dog, writer and muse, human and canine friends. Parts of DREAMING IN LIBRO remind me of A Kinship With Life, that well read tome from the 1930s that documents communicating with animals, especially the dog star, Strongheart. Without even knowing what she is doing Bernikow develops a relationship with Libro that is equal--partners--not owner or master and inferior beast. As dog lovers everywhere know, we are the inferior beasts.

It's a beach book, a bedtime book, a gift book, a read to your dog aloud book--what more could one want? If only Libro had liked cats, it would also be a cat lover book. If I say more I will start quoting my favorite parts and that will ruin all your fun, so buy this book for a friend, a lover, a dog.