Love Dogs? You’ll love these Best Dog Books
At Talent Hounds, we are storytellers. We are also dog lovers of the highest order. We are all about bringing out and celebrating the best in dogs. Most of the stories we tell and read each day are about dogs. The people who read our blog and write about dogs love dogs. Carol of BlogPaws, Fidose of Reality and Wigglebut Warriors even says “My heart beats dog”.
We realized we have a gold mine of talented storytellers in our dog-loving community and wanted to showcase some of their work. We understand the discipline, talent and time it takes to write a book, especially if you are also blogging and working. We are working on a romance and ‘Pippy Love’ and a pre-school picture book series ‘Penny P. Pug” with rather slow progress.
We found there are so many great stories, we decided to focus on books for now, and divide our showcases into fiction and factual for adults and kids.
Here’s our list of top fictional dog books for grown-ups written and/or recommended by Talent Hounds community members and dog lovers in no particular order. They include heartwarming stories, incredible mysteries, romances and tales of heroic feats.
Comment below and on our Facebook Post to be entered in a draw for a copy of a wonderful M.K. Clinton or Jackie Bouchard novel (US and Canada over 18 where legal. Each comment on either or both = one entry)!
Visit these amazing authors to learn more about them and their books by clicking on their names.
Get Chez Stinky for FREE in e-format HERE
* If we missed your dog book or a dog book you love, add it in the comments and/or e-mail me susan at talenthounds dot ca.
Top Fictional Dog Books for Adults
The Returns Series By: M.K. Clinton
We met Melissa through BlogPaws and became friends online. We finally met in person at the BlogPaws 2015 conference. I wish we had had more time to chat as I love her Monday news reports and blogs. She is a great writer with a wonderful sense of humour. She has written 2 fictional books about dogs so far. BUY NOW
September Day Series by Amy Shojai
Amy Shojai is a renowned pet expert and prodigious writer of helpful factual books and articles. I met Amy at Barkworld in 2014 and discovered her first fictional book in the September Day series Lost and Found. I loved it. I have since got to know Amy better through a BlogPaws Group and am totally inspired by her.
Lost and Found– Animal behaviorist September Day has lost everything-husband murdered, career in ruins, confidence shot–and returns home with her trained Maine Coon cat Macy to Texas to recover. She’s forced out of hibernation when her nephew Steven and his autism service dog Shadow disappear in a freak blizzard. BUY NOW
The second book in the series is Hide and Seek which sounds just as exciting. Amy has just completed her third book in the series and we can’t wait for a sneak peek.
Rescue Me, Maybe By: Jackie Bouchard
We met Jackie online and now follow her blog and stories each week. She is warm and kind with a great sense of humour.
Quote from Jackie:
As a life-long dog lover (our family beagle, Barney, and I were “puppies” together), I take inspiration from all the dogs in my life for my books. I’ve been inspired by the dogs my husband and I have owned and loved, by our family’s dogs, by dog stories that I see in the news, and even by an episode of Emergency Vet! I like to say that my novels are “Fido-friendly fiction”, stories about women and the dogs they love, and how those dogs teach them to be better people.
A love story inspired by both of Jackie’s angels, Bailey and Abby. Rescue Me, Maybe is a story of loss, love and self-discovery, while dealing with loss. BUY NOW
If you are looking for another good read that offers drama and laughter check out Jackies’ other novel: What the Dog Ate
Meet Maggie and her the-world-is-my-smorgasbord chocolate Lab, Kona. After a life change, Maggie decides to be more like Kona. Heartwarming hilarity ensues. BUY NOW
The third novel from the bestselling author Jackie Bouchard is a humorous and heartwarming look at how life creates opportunities to love in surprising ways. When Alex Halstad’s orderly life turns chaotic, she must learn from her dog the true meaning of love and acceptance. BUY NOW
An Alpine Grove Romantic Comedy (7 Book Series) By: Susan C. Daffron
Susan has written 20 books and came very highly recommended.(Full list of titles HERE) We look forward to reading them and seeing more of her.
The Alpine Grove Romantic Comedies are full of dogs and cats -Perfect For Pet Lovers. Collect all seven titles including:
Chez Stinky (An Alpine Grove Romantic Comedy #1) Get Chez Stinky for FREE in e-format HERE
Fuzzy Logic (An Alpine Grove Romantic Comedy Book 2)
The Art of Wag (An Alpine Grove Romantic Comedy Book 3)
Snow Furries (An Alpine Grove Romantic Comedy Book 4)
Bark to the Future (An Alpine Grove Romantic Comedy Book 5)
Howl at the Loon (An Alpine Grove Romantic Comedy Book 6)
The Good, the Bad, and the Pugly (An Alpine Grove Romantic Comedy Book 7)
Get Chez Stinky for FREE in e-format HERE
Dogs Don’t Lie By: Clea Simon
We met Clea briefly at a book signing in 2014 and bought and enjoyed a copy of her book Dogs Don’t Lie.
The Pru Marlowe pet noir series features an animal behaviorist who can hear what animals are thinking, most notably her irascible tabby Wallis.
In the first novel of the series Pru picks up clues by listening in on animals thoughts–and learns there are secrets in the pretty little town that make murder look simple. Unable to tell anybody about her psychic abilities, uncertain at times about her own sanity, Pru comes to realize that if she clears Lily, an ex pit-fighting pit bull, she’ll likely become the prime suspect–or the next victim. While the only creature she can totally trust is her crotchety tabby Wallis, Pru’s got to uncover the real killer–and find a way to live with her gift–before the real beasts in the town savage her and those she has come to love.
Check out the whole Pru Marlowe Pet Noir Series: Dogs Don’t Lie (2011), Cats Can’t Shoot (2012), Parrots Prove Deadly (2013), Panthers Play for Keeps (2014), Kittens Can Kill (2015), and When Bunnies Go Bad (2016) BUY NOW
Click HERE for a full list of Simon’s work including many novels for cat lovers!
Red Dog By: Louis de Bernieres
While visiting Perth in Western Australia, Louis discovered a bronze statue to Red Dog outside the town of Dampier. He soon discovered the magical story behind the bronze dog.
“A few months later, I returned to Western Australia and spent two glorious weeks driving around collecting Red Dog stories and visiting the places that he knew, writing up the text as I went along. I hope my cat never finds out that I have written a story to celebrate the life of a dog.” – Louis de Bernieres
Scents and Sensibility: A Chet and Bernie Mystery (The Chet and Bernie Mystery Series) By: Spencer Quinn
In the latest entry in the immensely popular Chet and Bernie mystery series, Private Investigator Bernie Little and his canine companion, Chet, return home to encounter some alarming developments. When a mysterious case of illegal cactus smuggling comes to their attention, Chet and Bernie Little, find themselves in a prickly situation in this eighth book in the New York Times bestselling mystery series.
Quote from Spencer:
“Chet, a dog, narrates the Chet and Bernie series, but he’s not a talking dog. He’s as purely canine as I could make him. But as we all know, dogs have a narrative of what’s going on in their heads. That’s what’s on the page.”
See the complete Chet and Bernie Mystery series written by Spencer
The Art of Racing In The Rain By: Garth Stein
Enzo knows he is different from other dogs: a philosopher with a nearly human soul (and an obsession with opposable thumbs), he has educated himself by watching television and listening carefully to the words of his master, Denny Swift, an up-and-coming race car driver. Now in his twilight years, Enzo finds himself thinking back on his life with the Swift family, reflecting on all he has learned about the human condition and how life, like racing, is about so much more than simply going fast. BUY NOW
The Plague Dogs By: Richard Adams
Adams’ third novel is an engrossing tale and remarkable journey into the hearts and minds of two canine heroes, Snitter and Rowf, fugitives from the horrors of an animal research center who escape into the isolation–and terror–of the wilderness. BUY NOW
And some classics:
Flush By: Virginia Wolf
This story of Elizabeth Barrett Browning told through the eyes of her cocker spaniel, Flush. Although Flush has adventures of his own with bullying dogs, horrid maids, and robbers, he also provides the reader with a glimpse into Browning’s life. BUY NOW
Lassie Come Home By: Eric Knight
Celebrate the human-animal bond with a classic story of Lassie – A prize collie and constant companion for a boy named Joe. But when Joe’s father loses his job, Lassie must be sold. Three times she escapes from her new owner, and three times she returns home to Joe, until finally she is taken to the remotest part of Scotland–too far a journey for any dog to make alone . . . But Lassie is not just any dog. BUY NOW
Dog Stories By: Jack London
Set in the Klondike, California, Mexico, and the South Seas, the short stories collected here–many for the first time–show London as one of the great American storytellers.
“The Call of the Wild,” perhaps the best novel ever written about animals, traces a dog’s education for survival in the ways of the wolfpack.
“White Fang,” in which a wolf-dog becomes domesticated out of love for a man, is an unforgettable portrayal of a world of “hunting and being hunted, eating and being eaten, all in blindness and confusion.”
In “The Sea-Wolf,” the primitive takes human form in the ruthless, indomitable Wolf Larsen, captain of a crew of outcasts on the lawless Alaskan seas.
Buff: A Collie And Other Dog Stories By: Albert Payson Terhune
Buff : A Collie,
“One Minute Longer”
The Foul Fancier
The Sunnybank Collies
Read these classic short stories from 1921. Terhune wrote books about dogs in the 1920s and ’30s, and through his books he created a spark of love for dogs in general and for Collies.
The Story of Edgar Sawtelle: A Novel By:
Born mute, speaking only in sign, Edgar Sawtelle leads an idyllic life with his parents on their farm in remote northern Wisconsin. He is forced to flee into the vast wilderness that lays beyond the farm. Edgar comes of age in the wild, fighting for his survival and that of the three yearling dogs who follow him. But his need to face his father’s murderer and his devotion to the Sawtelle dogs turn Edgar ever homeward. Will he make it?
House Broken By:
For veterinarian Geneva Novak, animals can be easier to understand than people. They’re also easier to forgive. But when her mother, Helen, is injured in a vodka-fueled accident, it’s up to Geneva to give her the care she needs. As the truth about her family unfolds, Geneva may find secrets too painful to bear and too terrible to forgive.
Dog Crazy: A Novel of Love Lost and Found By: Meg Donohue
As a pet bereavement counselor, Maggie Brennan uses a combination of empathy, insight, and humor to help patients cope with the anguish of losing their beloved four-legged friends. Though she has a gift for guiding others through difficult situations, Maggie has major troubles of her own that threaten the success of her counseling practice and her volunteer work with a dog rescue organization.
Packed with deep emotion and charming surprises, Dog Crazy is a bighearted and entertaining story that skillfully captures the bonds of love, the pain of separation, and the power of our dogs to heal us.
Play Dead By: Leslie O’Kane
Meet Allie Babcock – The Audacious Dog Therapist with a Flair for Sleuthing At her brand new shop in Boulder, Allie’s very first client is a dejected collie whose previous owner allegedly took her own life. But with a natural nose for crime, Allie soon suspects murder—leaving her dejected canine client as possibly the sole witness to the crime. Allie’s life may never be safe until one of the suspects lands in the pen…
Jackie Bouchard says
Thanks so much for including me and my books with all these fabulous authors & their books! Lots of great books here!
M. K. Clinton says
Thank you so much for including The Returns series with my friends and fellow authors ♥
I loved Jackie’s first two books, can’t wait to get my hands on the third. Haven’t read any of M.K.’s books yet.
Talent Hounds says
Thanks for commenting- good luck- maybe you’ll win a copy XS
Earl Lover says
These look brill! I’ll have to read them!
Rachele Baker, DVM says
Thanks for sharing these, Susan! I have read The Returns by M.K. Clinton and it is very well written and really funny.
Those all look like great books! There are a lot of authors in there that I recognize. 🙂 I think that adding pets helps to make a story better.
Thanks for putting this collection together, I’ve just bookmarked your page and need to place an Amazon order soon! Lots of great new books to choose from. 🙂
Tenacious Little Terrier says
I loved What the Dog Knows that I read earlier this year. I see a lot of great books on your list!
Jenna,Mark “HuskyCrazed” Drady says
Love love lovvvvvvve the series from MK!!!! Was such a great adventurous read!
ღ husky hugz ღ frum our pack at Love is being owned by a husky!
Talent Hounds says
We love MK and she writes so well.
Carol Bryant says
I am proud to know some of the folks on the list and have read some of the books, too. Great list of fab books for dog lovers.
Talent Hounds says
I hoped you would like Carol as I know how passionate you are about dogs. I loved the ones I have read so far and working my way through the list. I also love showcasing out talented friends XS
How nice of you. Thanks for sharing!
City Dog Expert says
The Art of Racing in the Rain is possibly the sadest book I have read.
This is a great list. Thanks for sharing
Talent Hounds says
Thanks so much!
Jessica @ YouDidWhatWithYourWeiner says
Great list if books. Fiction books aren’t really on my radar so I had no idea that so many from the pet blogging community had written the. I would like to read Jackie’s Rescue Me, Maybe if I ever have the time.
Susan and the gang from Life with Dogs and Cats says
I have quite a few of those books, and have always been a fan of Albert Payson Terhune. I found out a few years ago that I live less than an hour away from Sunnybank, and I’m hoping to visit there this fall. BTW, one of the best dog books every? The Story of Edgar Sawtelle. One of my all-time favorites.
–Wags (and purrs) from Life with Dogs and Cats
Talent Hounds says
Oooohh thanks- I have not read that one I don’t think but will add and get a copy. S
Lindsay, Matilda - Little Dog Tips says
What a great selection!
Liv and Spark says
Thanks for this great article filled with all these great books! I have read a couple of them … but will definitely be on the lookout for them all!
Sweet Purrfections says
Mom Paula says when she retires in a couple more years that she is going to start reading again.
I don’t think I saw it on the list but – The Dog Who Wouldn’t Be by Farley Mowat is a classic and great for all ages and one of my favs.
That looks like a great lineup. I only have one of those so will have to look into adding to my library. Thanks for sharing.
Thanks for the suggestions! I’m already in love with the Chet and Bernie mysteries!
Jean Carr says
I have 3 more novels to add to your list:
House Broken by Sonja Yoerg
Dog Crazy by Meg Donahue
Play Dead by Leslie O’Kane
And one memoir
Merle’s Door (I forget the author’s name)
Talent Hounds says
Thanks so much!! I have not read them yet but look forward to some Fall fun
Janice Kryfka says
My home library consists of mostly canine related stories- fiction and non-fiction.I am always thrilled to add more to the pack!