Whitney Pastorek
April 11, 2005 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Wild Dogs

type
Book
Current Status
In Season
author
Helen Humphreys
publisher
W.W. Norton
genre
Fiction

We gave it a B+

In the tiny but powerful Wild Dogs, six strangers sit at the edge of a forest over one long, horrible summer, waiting for their best friends — their dogs — to stop running wild and come home. The emotional leader of the human pack is Alice, who’s come unmoored from her own life but finds herself caught up in caring for the group as best she can; her compassion is evident as the characters each get a chapter to describe their individual tragedies. Helen Humphreys maintains the same spare, unflinching honesty throughout, whether writing from the perspective of a brilliantly stoic scientist or a brain-damaged young girl. Wild Dogs isn’t for the fragile of heart, but its brutal perspective on love and loss will haunt you for days.

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