Tails of the Unexpected: Digressions, a Dog and Project X by John Donoghue
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
You get John Donoghue’s sense of humour as soon as he mentions the little deep sea diver. I challenge anyone reading Tails of the Unexpected not to pause at page 7 to realise you’ve already laughed seven times (possibly more – I was too busy reading to be counting). That’s when you settle down knowing you’re in for some delicious feel-good factor humour. I lost track of the laugh out loud moments before I’d even reached the halfway point. I think I must be totally on the author’s wavelength. The man holding up the financial institute… OMG! I snorted – outside on the balcony (the woman in the static caravan next door said, I’ll have what’s she’s having). I could picture him, blinkity blink! As for the guy’s rationale regarding his toggles… How could you not embarrass yourself? And the baby hedgehog!! Hysterical! Providing you get over the initial WHAT?? shock.
So, to the story. We have the author, a single dad, deciding he’s going to get a dog, a decision that has to be run by his young daughter, who he’s pretty sure will think he’s not up to the task and will dismiss his idea as a childish whim. JD’s going to do this right though, cue much research on suitable breed and purchase of dog psychology books. Small problem, dogs don’t read. Problem solved: John will write Ten Commandments to be shared with anyone who comes into contact with the dog – and anyone in future who wants a handy ‘how to’ train them guide. Commandments, of course, are made to be broken (well, you know). John will call them suggestions instead. Say no more.
Seriously, the author did remind me of some golden rules regarding training and dog speak. I’ve just rediscovered that the simple word ‘No’ works far better than a lengthy explanation when trying to discourage my dogs from arbitrarily barking, sitting on the table, peeing (not on the table), etc.
The plan hatched to mark Bethan’s birthday centring around birthdays and place names is brilliant, more so because I can picture the various expressions of the mischief makers beneath – and dear Barney’s.
I have to say I felt terribly sorry for John when I read that his parents had encouraged him on his chosen path. Then again, I could see their point. Oh, and I’m seriously upset about the Walk Like an Egyptian song. Really?
If you’re looking for a stress-relieving, belly-laugh inducing read, I would highly recommend TAILS of the UNEXPECTED. Just for info, John Donoghue’s other books – Police, Crime & 999, Police, Lies and Alibis and Police, Arrests & Suspects – will make you laugh so hard they really should come with a health warning. Thanks for a brilliant read, John!
Amazon Link: TAILS of the UNEXPECTED