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A Boy and His Dog at the End of the World

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Member Reviews

I don't tend to read much sci-fi/fantasy, but when I do, I almost always end up loving it. That's what happened when I read A Boy and His Dog at the End of the World. This book really made me think, and it also made me wonder just how far would we be willing to go to save or retrieve someone or something we love. When a thief steals one of Griz's dogs, he takes his other dog, Jip, and goes searching for the thief and his beloved animal. I don't know about anyone else, but I would definitely go to the ends of the Earth to save one of my pets, so I easily identified with Griz. This book was so good and took me on such an adventure!
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My thanks to NetGalley and Orbit Books for a copy of this book.

A Boy and His Dog at the End of the World by C. A. Fletcher is a novel about love and loyalty, both two- and four-legged, when society is gone, and everything around you is broken, failing and corrupt. In this future, mankind has developed problems reproducing and the birth rate has dropped to near zero, with some exceptions. A boy lives with his small family on an island in the Atlantic, when a trader comes a visiting, eventually leaving but taking a dog away with him. Griz, our boy, leaves his island to get his dog back, and travels a, well not brave, but a new world to both him and the readers. A familiar tale to long term dystopian fiction readers, but with a lot of fresh ideas, interesting writing and many surprises. An interesting end to the world.
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Very slow start, almost considered putting it down.. . Figured out the secret, liked the relationships and thought the ending was great. So far removed from history that you forget it's dystopian
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A BOY AND HIS DOG AT THE END OF THE WORLD is an interesting and engaging post-apocalyptic novel. In Fletcher's novel, the world has suffered the "Gelding", which left most of the human population sterile. Society is crumbling, and many people live in tiny pockets of self-sufficient groups. At the heart of the novel is Griz's quest to get back his stolen dog. It's a very well-told story of family, grit, survival, and loyalty. Enjoyed it a lot.
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While the end of this book was a surprise, I unfortunately found the part between the beginning and the end to be grim (which is fine in a post-apocalyptic novel) and plodding (which is NOT acceptable.) I kept wishing the thing would just be over. Sorry, but I probably won't recommend.
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Overall a rather dull book that I feel like I've read before. The writing was a weird mix of attempting to be wise and also juvenile. The "twist" at the end was irritating as it was very clearly just for impact on the reader (aka attention for the book/author) and not for the story's sake. Was I supposed to be blown away? Because I wasn't.
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A highly enjoyable post-apocalyptic story that kept me on my toes the whole time. I loved following Griz's journey as he learned about the world around him.
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An engrossing post-apocalyptic tale. An excellent addition to fiction collections where dystopian titles are popular.
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A complex survivalistic story with heartbreaking moments and such well thought-out worldbuilding. I love the details such as the main character knowing from photos what a crowd of people looks like but not what that smells like or sounds like, or the fact that dialogue in French is spelled out phonetically because that's how the main character understands it, leaving the reader to also kind of have to guess what the other person is saying as if we're understanding as little as the main character is.
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First off, I would love to be alone with just a dog (actually, just my cat) at the end of the world. Something about it seems ...peaceful?

Okay, well this book proves that it is absolutely not. Griz, who lives in an eerily quiet apocalyptic world, takes us on an adventure when a redbearded shithead (yep) stole one of his dogs. And you KNOW Griz has to get her back. 

"Never trust someone who tells good stories, not until you know why they're doing it."

This was a haunting, unassumingly exciting read. The reader feels like they're facing the obstacles alongside Griz, instead of simply reading it. All of the characters were well written and the atmosphere was palpably dangerous. Apocalyptic, end-of-the-world stories are very popular right now, but this one feels fresh and new. 

Thanks to Orbit Books for and ARC of A Boy and His Dog at the End of the World in exchange for an honest review.
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I am a member of the American Library Association Reading List Award Committee. This title was suggested for the 2020 list. It was not nominated for the award. The complete list of winners and shortlisted titles is at <a href="https://rusaupdate.org/2020/01/2020-reading-list-years-best-in-genre-fiction-for-adult-readers/">
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I liked this book but not as much as I expected. I usually really enjoy post-apocalyptic writing but this one dragged a bit for me. It became a case of liking the premise more than the execution.
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This novel is AMAZING! The narrative is excellent and the timing is impeccable. The structure is unique and well-done. This story deals with the post-apocalypse in a much more internalized way so that it just feels like another occurrence. The real mastery is the character development and poignant situations which are relatable and incredible all at once. Definitely one of my favorites of the year and an indisputable must read!
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I loved the reference to the cult favorite movie with script by Harlan Ellison.  Honestly that was the high point for me.  The story was better than workmanlike but it did not live up to my, perhaps, overblown hopes for it.
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I received this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. I loved the story of Griz searching for the dog Brand stole. The author created a really vital world in the future where the Gelding had happened and made a lot of people infertile, killing off most of humanity. On the journey Griz meets a woman from France looking for someone that killed her family with a disease. And the ending is jarring. Great story telling.
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Rating: ★★★★

Synopsis

When a beloved family dog is stolen, her owner sets out on a life-changing journey through the ruins of our world to bring her back in this fiercely compelling tale of survival, courage, and hope. Perfect for readers of Station Eleven and The Girl With All the Gifts.

My name’s Griz. My childhood wasn’t like yours. I’ve never had friends, and in my whole life I’ve not met enough people to play a game of football.

My parents told me how crowded the world used to be, but we were never lonely on our remote island. We had each other, and our dogs.

Then the thief came.

There may be no law left except what you make of it. But if you steal my dog, you can at least expect me to come after you.

Because if we aren’t loyal to the things we love, what’s the point?

Review

Big thanks to the publisher and author for an advanced reading copy of A Boy and His Dog at the End of the World in exchange for an honest review. Receiving this ARC did not influence my thoughts or opinions on the novel.

First eye catching this about this novel is the title and cover. There is very much a Girl With All the Gifts vibe going on with the cover design, WHICH I LOVE, and the storyline has a similar POV of a young child in a post-apocalyptic world.

Unlike TGWAtG, ABaHDatEotW doesn’t deal with zombified humans and survival amongst their numbers, but it does deal with surviving what humanity is reduced to after a world-changing event. It is the relationships that are built when all hope is lost, and the trust you have with another to survive.

Seeing the world from Griz’s viewpoint is sort of mind-blowing as the everyday items we tend to take for granted are full of excitement and wonder when he stumbles upon them. It is this naivety, along with the companionship he shares with his dog, Jip, that completely enraptured me and kept my heart in this story and with Griz. Connecting with characters in the worlds I explore through reading will always be a deal-sealer when it comes to finishing books.

But let’s be honest: I really read this book for the dogs. Having 3 of them myself, I am the Dean Koontz of suckers for books with dogs somehow incorporated in them. And before you get any hesitancy about terrible, horrible, no good, very bad things happening to doggos in the novel, I can put your mind at ease (somewhat) as there are plenty of highs to go with the lows.

Overall, A Boy and His Dog at the End of the World is a captivating read full of fantastic world-building, enthralling characters, and plenty of heart. It is the post-apocalyptic book of 2019 that you need to have on your TBR and is an adventure that you do not want to miss.
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A Boy and His Dog at the End of the World by C.A. Fletcher is a book that refuses to be contained to a single genre and instead smoothly masters several. Fantasy, coming of age, dystopian, apocalyptic...it is all of these and none.

"...Of all the animals that have travelled the long road through the ages with us, dogs always walked closest.
And those that remain are still with us now, here at the end of the world. And there may be no law left except what you make it, but if you steal my dog, you can at least expect me to come after you. If we're not loyal to the things we love, what's the point? That's like not having a memory. That's when we stop being human.
That's a kind of death, even if you keep breathing..."

Griz lives with his family on an island, only them and the dogs they kept. The world has changed and the family sought safety on the remote island. Griz is too young to know any other kind of life. He has heard tales of the world of before. Our world, before everything changed. Griz has never had any friends and has never met enough people to even field a football team. Just Griz and his family and their dogs. Until the stranger came. The thief.

"...You really think a dog's life is worth a human's? he said.
A life's a life, I said. And those lives were in my care.
You're crazy, he said.
I know what I am, I said. And I know what you are too.
And what's that? he said.
Someone who doesn't know what they are, I said. Someone who lies, even to themselves. A thief who think's he's not a bad man..."

The man known as Brand showed up on Griz's island one day and traded with Griz's father. But when he left, he took one of the dogs. Griz's dog. Griz took his own boat and followed, going into a world that he has been in. Shores and ruin cities that he had only ever read about in books. Following the thief. But in the new world, the broken and ruined world, Griz begins to learn more about the humanity that failed. The world that fell apart. But Griz also finds that he is unprepared for the world beyond his island, and the secrets that his parents have kept from him.

"...I saw the hooded figure and I saw the pale horse she sat on, and I saw the long double-barrelled gun she was holding, pointed up at the sky like a knight's lance..."

The disease that had ravaged the world especially attacked the female of the species and young girls of any species, human and dog, were prized. And to often traded or taken. That is why the thief took Griz's dog, because she was female and fit to be bred. Now Griz is in a world whose dangers and traps he knows too little of. But Griz has a secret all his own as well, a secret that puts Griz in even more danger. 

Griz's journey is both through the landscape of a world ravaged and a civilization in ruin. There are hints of Charleston Heston riding on a beach at the end of Planet of the Apes. Look it up. But it is not just the journey through a country that no longer exists as the journey that Griz must take within his own mind. The truths and half truths and outright lies he has lived with for his entire life. Brand tries to convince Griz over time to return to his island and forget this journey. And over the novel we begin to see Brand as perhaps not the bad man Griz thinks him to be and perhaps not a thief at all. This is something that Griz has to accept if he is to survive.

The novel also shows how fragile civilization is. How a disease that mainly targets the female of the species can turn women from humans to a commodity. This is nothing new, conquerors how been taking the women of their enemies for breeding since time eternal. Here, in this dystopian future, it has become a reality. 

A Boy and His Dog at the End of the World is the kind of morality tale that science fiction/fantasy use to do so well and it is refreshing to see it done so again. 

A truly good read!
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A Boy and His Dog at the End of the World is a proper end-of-the-world story, as it has everything you want in such stories. Plus, the entire story revolves around a boy's attempt to get back his dog. That type of loyalty goes a long way towards overcoming any of the story's pitfalls. Thankfully, there are few to none. C. A. Fletcher provides a history so that we can understand Griz' world and why the sight of other people fills one with fear and not excitement. The world into which Griz ventures is harsh and dangerous but not without its beauty as well. Griz' journey is exciting and refuses to follow any pattern, meaning it never becomes predictable or mundane. It is the type of story that engages your imagination while Griz' struggles engage your sympathies. It is the type of book I had hoped more people would read because it is engrossing and provides a plethora of discussion topics. Have you read it? What did you think?
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I received this via netgalley in exchange for an honest review. 

I loved it guys. This book was just what I wanted It to be. The characters were very well flushed out. I loved the plot of this. I can not wait to read more by this author. I highly recommend this book.
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This book was so heartwarming and cute but so sad and heartbreaking. I don't normally go for post-apocalyptic stories, as they aren't really my style, but this one ended up entertaining me quite a bit, which is a positive surprise. It was written, though, in a very weird say, at least for me, which kind of ruined some parts of it.
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