Following Atticus: Forty-Eight High Peaks, One Little Dog, and an Extraordinary Friendship by Tom Ryan is published by William Morrow. It tells the story of my adventures with Atticus M. Finch, a little dog of some distinction. You can also find our column in the NorthCountry News.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Humbled

As our book, Following Atticus: Forty-Eight High Peaks, One Little Dog, and an Extraordinary Friendship, makes its way into the hands of readers across the country, reviews continue to come in and on occasion I am humbled.    Mark Twain wrote that "The public is the only critic whose opinion is worth anything at all."  I understood this during my newspapering days with the Undertoad and as a first time author who is often overlooked by many professional reviewers it's a lesson taught to me on a daily basis. 

So you can imagine how it feels when perfect strangers who have nothing to gain, no paid review to write, nor any need to pad their reputation by voicing their opinion on our story have something to say.  While I don't always read reviews, one woman who posted both on Amazon's and Barnes and Noble's websites wrote something that has left me humbled.  And while I'm not sure we are worthy of her kind words I thought I'd share them with you nonetheless.  It follows below. . . .

What we all need right now is (to be) Following Atticus

This is definitely the best book I've read in a long, long time. Tom Ryan takes the reader on an achingly personal yet amazing journey with "Following Atticus". This is not just a typical dog memoir, and it's not just a story about the adversities of hiking the White Mountains of New Hampshire. This book shares with us wonderful life lessons taught by a little dog. live in the moment, be close to nature, reflect, persevere when things get tough, give selflessly, love unconditionally. Atticus gently leads Tom to discover his true self, and as Tom shares this story, the reader experiences all emotions encountered along the way. You will laugh out loud, you will shed tears, you will feel the exhilaration of triumph, and cheer for this unlikely pair. Tom writes in such a way that the reader can't help but feel a personal connection to his experiences. By the end of the book, Tom has changed... and the reader probably has too. This book couldn't come to us at a better time - in a world where we are constantly barraged with bad news and negativity, this book will remind the reader of all that is good and right and possible. Tom Ryan and Atticus are an inspiration, and we would all do well to follow them.

9 comments:

Tiago Vaz said...

Cant wait to get my and on your book ;) Do you have any information if it will get to Portugal? Because its an extra 15 euros with the shiping fees :S

Thanks ;)

Anonymous said...

i am reading your wonderful book and loving it. My husband and I and our miniature schnauzer, Emmi would love to come to a book signing and to meet both you and Atticus M. Finch. We are hoping you will be coming to the Marlton, NJ area at some point in your book tour. We will be there in a heart-beat to see you.
Hope I can find out where and when you will be in the future. Thanks for a wonderful book, we are loving it. <3

Morris Workman said...

Congratulations on publishing your exploits with Atticus, and for catching on with such a prestigious publishing house.

Well done!

*Morris Workman
www.morrisworkman.com

Steven said...

Excellent work, sounds fascinating :)

Kim@Snug Harbor said...

I just finished reading the book and I loved it. Nicely written. I laughed, I cried, but mostly I felt the love! What a journey you have been on. Best wishes for your continued success. Enjoy the ride!

Anonymous said...

I just finnished Tom's book,which brought back many beautiful memories of hiking in the White Mountains with our miniature schnauzer. In 1989 he became the 19th canine member of the 4000footer club.Often I had the feeling to see our Siegfried in Atticus.A heartwarming story. Thanks

Julie Bernier said...

Your book came into my hands via one of my customers who is a librarian at the Portland (Maine) Public Library. She knew I'd love it, and I do, I do. I'm about to begin Chapter 17. I run a school for dogs in South Portland called Dances With Dogs and on Mondays and Fridays I take groups of my students (all small breeds) out hiking. It is the joy of my life currently. Check out my website to see some videos of our very first hikes of Pleasant Mountain in Fryeburg, ME. I get SO MUCH out of sharing this experience with my pals. One of my pack leaders is Addie Mini Schnauzer. She, like Atticus, always stays 10-20 yards ahead of me on the trail and she loves to sit and gaze when we get to the summit, like Little Buddha. If you get up this way on your tour....or you'd like to MAKE a trip up to promote your book, I will help you set it up and you can do a meet & greet here at my school....I would LOVE to meet you and Atticus. I will look for you on Facebook!! Find me at DancesWithDogsMaine.com. Keep writing....keep hiking....and keep sharing what you do.

LG said...

I may buy this book today!

Urban Wild said...

That is EXACTLY how I feel after reading your book. I feel inspired, uplifted, and yes--I am changed for the better having read it. Thank you Tom & Atticus. You are a lovely light in an often dark and ugly world.