A Little Dog Like You by Rosemary Sutcliff | “After Pippin, a beloved chihuahua, dies … “

A Little Dog Like You by Rosemary SutcliffToday’s diary entry about her dog Barny put me in mind of the little book Rosemary Sutcliff published a years earlier, in 1987, A Little Dog Like You. Kirkus reviews wrote at the time of publication in the USA in 1990:

After Pippin, a beloved Chihuahua, dies, he begs St. Francis to let him go back to his beloved mistress, Mammie–who, hoping that her faithful friend will return, manages to puzzle out the time and place of their joyful reunion. Though the plot sounds trite, Sutcliff’s skillful pen turns the story to gold–an unsentimental portrait of an affectionate bond that will be familiar to any dog lover, while the difficulty posed by the painful discrepancy between the life spans of dog and human is resolved with a reincarnation that is both metaphorical and realistic: the new dog is not precisely Pippin–he has new markings and is given a new name–but he does represent a continuation of love. The format is as engagingly diminutive, as Pippin himself; Johnson’s precise, gentle  illustrations add just the right touch. A well-wrought charmer.

Author: Anthony Lawton

Chair, Sussex Dolphin, family company which looks after the work of eminent children’s & historical fiction author Rosemary Sutcliff (1920-92). Formerly CEO, chair & trustee of various charity, cultural & educational enterprises in UK.

3 thoughts on “A Little Dog Like You by Rosemary Sutcliff | “After Pippin, a beloved chihuahua, dies … “”

  1. I wish I could get hold of a copy of that one. Not the least because I own a Chihuahua ( or rather he owns me). :-)

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  2. I also found my copy at a library book sale and purchased it to give to my mom. She has cherished it as the little dog in the story is so much like her Chico. Great little book.

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  3. I was surprised to find this at a library book sale not too long ago; I even wondered if it might be some other Rosemary Sutcliff! But the Kirkus review is spot-on; the gold of Sutcliff’s pen is instantly recognizable. In a January post, I wrote:

    “…it’s as much a Sutcliff story, in its own way, as is The Eagle of the Ninth. Her prose is tender, sprinkled with yellow daffodils, and describes thoughtful people yearning for companionship and love. A children’s story, to be read aloud, but also to be savored comfortably by adults. After reading it, you will want to hug your pet—if you have one—and generally share smiles with those you love.”

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