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Fri Oct 31 11:48:56 SAST 2014

QUICK REVIEWS: 27 November 2012

Times LIVE | 27 November, 2012 00:07

A LETTER TO MY DOG - NOTES TO OUR BEST FRIENDS

When I was a child, I so longed for a dog that I walked through the neighbourhood with dog biscuits in my pockets and made friends with the dogs in our road. Then I got Emma, my wheaten Labrador, for my 13th birthday. When I went to boarding school I wrote to her daily. A Letter to My Dog is a touching contribution from dog lovers. There are pieces by Oprah Winfrey, Hilary Duff, Tony Bennett and Robin Layton's own entry to Monkey: "I thought I was the one rescuing you, but I would quickly learn that it was you who rescued me." There's Will Smith's daughter's note to Abby: "I love you so much; you're so sweet and friendly! I just don't like it when you pee everywhere! I love you!" Each contribution is accompanied by a dog portrait by Layton. - Caroline Fish

'A Letter to my Dog - Notes to Our Best Friends' by Robin Layton, Wild Dog Press, R234

THE LIFE AND LOVE OF CATS

When I moved into an apartment, I couldn't live without a four-legged pet. I got a cat - Oscar Wild(e). In the introduction to his coffee table cat extravaganza, Lewis Blackwell writes: "A cat's eyes are windows enabling us to see into another world. In this book we enter their vision." Starting with the earliest records of domestic cats 9000 years ago, Blackwell takes us on a journey exploring the joy of cats, searching for the essence of our connection with them. - Caroline Fish

'The Life and Love of Cats' by Lewis Blackwell, Wild Dog Press, R387

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