Eugene, the black one-eyed dog, plays a key role in my novel CELETERRA. Based on dog’s nature – faithfulness, reliability, courage – dogs are the true best friend of humans. Dogs are hunters, and as such they carry some threatening aspects; deep down inside many of us have some fear of dogs, or at least respect for them. Dogs broadcast “don’t mess with me.” They love their wolf pack, yet are independent, and focus on their own survival at all times.
A list of my favorite novels featuring dogs. Did I miss one?
- The Watchers — Dean Koontz
- Travels With Charley — John Steinbeck (non-fiction)
- Ghormley the Gnarley — Carlos Belavacqua (children’s fiction)
- The Banyan Tree — Terence Killiam
- Knifing the Roach Nest — Christiana Pelletier
- Springers on the Island Green — Aubrey Fortuna
- Portrait of the Artist as a Young Dog — Dylan Thomas
- Get in the Stagecoach — Christopher Hill
- Lift up Thy Frock-Coat — David Waits
- Lassie Come Home — Eric Knight
- Lad, A Dog — Albert Payson Terhune
- Marley and Me — John Grogan
- The Sheep-Pig — Dick King-Smith
- Cujo — Stephen King
- White Fang & Call of the Wild — Jack London
- Hound of the Baskervilles — Sherlock Holmes
- The Poky Little Puppy — Sebring Lowry
Sample from Celeterra
A dark shape appeared, at the end of the field that he was staring at. The figure wasn’t very big, yet sturdy and four legged. It moved from left to right and back again, as if it was looking for something, its nose close to the ground. Vance tried to focus his eyes, but he kept on seeing two unaligned images. He got up and staggered towards the moving form. It was still about 300 yards away, when, as if alerted, it stopped moving and stared at Vance intently. It was an animal. Vance hadn’t seen many animals in paradise, and certainly no species as big as this. Unexpectedly, the animal let go a loud, horrifying bark and started to run towards Vance in a strong, powerful gallop.
It was a dog, a menacing black dog. Vance could see the sharp white teeth in its ugly black face. Fear swept over Vance and he stumbled back. The monster put its jowls in the air and barked again, roaring. Vance considered running away, but realized that it was too late. No matter where he would run to, the animal could easily overtake him. He had a vision that the dog was a Messenger from Hell. It had come to pick him up, to collect him, and to drag him down into the Eternal Fire. Finally, they had decided what to do with him, God and the Devil had signed a sacred pact how to handle his disgraceful soul. They had scrutinized his past, had appraised his character, and had jointly decided to expel him from paradise forever. Spellbound, paralyzed, he stared at the approaching monster. It was a personified evil, the devil incarnate.
Then, suddenly, the dog seemed to shrink. As it was getting closer, it also seemed to reduce in size. Its shape and face gained some familiarity, as if Vance had encountered the beast a long time ago, in a previous life. The familiarity increased rapidly, as the animal got nearer and nearer. Finally, Vance recognized the animal. This big black bulk, now at the most 25 yards away, was no messenger from hell. Its pink tongue hung out if its mouth. The dog’s single eye gleamed in the sun with affection and enthusiasm. The other eye socket had been stitched closed, a trail of dried-out tears running down from it.
It was Eugene. Vance dropped down on his knees. The dog ran up to him and jumped, its four feet leaving the ground. The animal hit Vance’s chest with such speed that they both fell to the ground. Standing on Vance’s chest, the dog’s rough tongue went all over his face. After a second of hesitance, Vance embraced his companion, tears of happiness running from his eyes. “Eugene! Eugene, where do you come from?! My Eugene, my dog! My Buddy!”
Eugene barked loudly, a single big WOOF. He jumped off Vance’s chest, his big tongue lolling out of his mouth. Vance went into the shelter and brought the dog some tap water and something to eat. Eagerly the dog emptied the bowl of liquid, but ignored the food.
Want to read more?
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