By: Jacqueline Sheehan
Publisher: Avon A
Publication Date: April 2007
Reviewed by: Holly Connors
Review Date: March 2009
Rocky Pelligrino is a lost soul. She’s lost her husband and all desire to live. Lost and Found is the story of how Rocky’s life fell apart and how, with the help of a few close friends and one amazing dog, she rediscovers the joys of life.
Within the first few pages of Lost and Found, Rocky’s husband Bob suffers a massive heart attack and dies. Grief stricken, Rocky chops her hair, rents her house, takes a leave from her job as a psychologist at a university, and heads up to Maine. Landing a job as the animal control warden of Peak’s Island, a small tourist enclave near Portland, Rocky soon settles into the off-season life of rescuing cats, catching dogs and counting the dead seagulls along the beach.
Rocky befriends Tess, a retired physical therapist with a unique look on life, thanks to synesthesia, a condition that creates colors in the mind for everything from noises to days of the week. Next, Rocky meets her next door neighbors, Elaine and her daughter Melissa, a teenager suffering from anorexia. These friendships help pass the quiet days on Peak’s Island, until Rocky rescues a black lab with an arrow sticking out of his shoulder. Rocky takes her job as animal control warden a little too far as she searches out the cruel person who shot the dog.
Lost and Found is a wonderful story of rehabilitation, both physical and spiritual. Lloyd the dog, who eventually is renamed Cooper once his original owner is discovered, helps Rocky heal the wounds of lose caused by her husband’s death. Without realizing it, the dog charms his way into her heart, and Rocky becomes incredibly attached him, as does Melissa, the young girl suffering from anorexia. Melissa adores Cooper and through his love, the girl slowly comes out of her shell. The author does an excellent job of creating interesting characters, realistic situations, and a sense of apprehension that keeps the pages turning. The only shift in this effective storytelling comes from several short chapters told from the dog’s point of view. These brief interludes take anthropomorphism to a new level and disrupt the flow of the story.
Quill says: A satisfying read about the remarkable effects a dog’s love can have on those around him.
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