The Dogs of Littlefield
By Suzanne Berne
Simon & Schuster, Hardcover, 9781476794242, January 2016, 288pp.
The Short of It:
Perfect suburban neighborhoods are anything but perfect.
The Rest of It:
Littlefield, Massachusetts, is this perfect little town filled with psychologists and professors, wide open spaces and dogs, lots of dogs. But as perfect as it sounds, the dogs are off-leash and the neighborhood is divided over whether to allow them to continue to go off-leash or to impose leash laws. In the middle of this debate, someone is poisoning dogs one by one which has set the entire neighborhood on edge.
On the surface, there is a lot of dog talk but really, as with any suburban neighborhood where everyone knows everyone else or at least seems to think they know everything about everyone else, there is a lot of conflict between husbands and wives, friends, etc. The white picket fences are just an illusion, really.
However, what could have been a really strong read was really just okay in my book. Halfway through, the story seemed to lose steam even though there was still plenty to know about what was going on in the neighborhood. But Berne’s depiction of suburbia was pretty spot-on and that is what carried me through.
In the end, I enjoyed getting to know a new author but wish that the pacing had held up a little better.
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