I really wanted to love this book. But I really didn't. Sigh. I will start with the positive. Alexis is a good writer, and that shows in this book. It is full of lyrical and careful writing that in itself is a pleasure to read. But....this tale of dogs who obtain human consciousness was a failure to me in two important ways. One, I do not subscribe to the "alpha" theory that Alexis infuses his doggie society with. I understand why he does it, as this theory is so prevalent in our society today, but there are important studies that show that this theory (based on wolves) is not a true picture of how domesticated dogs interact with each other. Secondly, I do not subscribe to the picture of humanity that is presented here. Yes, human beings are flawed and too often we make the wrong choices which results in incredible harm. But not all the time. I thought this book majored on the dark and depressing part of human nature without balancing it with some light.
I found this book incredibly difficult to read. I'm a dog lover and could not stomach the long litany [SPOILER ALERT] of dogs dying one after another in horrible ways. And the last one broke my heart. Ugh. I very, very rarely say that I hate a book, but I really hated this one. The only reason I read to the end (and I rarely give up on a book) was because I was reading this one for my book club. They all hated it too.