Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Fido and Friend in Five: Valerie Hobbs and Maddie!

Happy 2013, everyone! I'm normally very superstitious about the number 13. When I'm at the gym, I will never, ever do 13 repetitions of something; I never fly on the 13th, and my husband and I have agreed that we will celebrate our 14th anniversary--twice!

So you can imagine how I feel about the year 2013. However, I'm determined this will be, in fact, a very good year--or at least not calamitous. And what a way to get a lucky start to this year with a Fido and Friend in Five visit with one of my very favorite authors, Valerie Hobbs!

Valerie is the author of eleven novels, two of which (and my unabashed favorites) are dog stories. A short story of hers, which was inspired by a German Shepherd mix she had as a child, also appears in the doggy short story collection Because of Shoe. My favorite Valerie Hobbs book is a charming, funny, wonderfully realized novel called Sheep, about a border collie named Jack looking to reclaim his purpose in life. Valerie has a sequel to Sheep called Wolf coming out this September. Hurray! Valerie has also written non-dog books, many of which are just as wonderful and have garnered lots of praise and awards. Whether Valerie is delving into the mind of a Border Collie, exploring the plight of urban runaways, the moral complexities of the Vietnam war, or a shy girl learning to stand up for what she believes in, Valerie does so with astonishing insight and compassion. Valerie also taught for a long time  at the University of California.

Like a few other authors on Fido and Friend, Valerie doesn't presently have a dog of her own. But she does have a "goddog" she adores, a Golden Retriever named Maddie. Let's meet Valerie Hobbs and Maddie in the first Fido and Friend in Five of the year:

Baby Maddie
Those toys wore me out!
1. How did you and Maddie find each other?  My friend, Gwen, adopted a seven week-old Golden she named Maddie. I fell in love with Maddie at first sight. She was floppy and silly and adorable. She is now seven months old and maturing into a beautiful lady.

2. What makes Maddie's tail wag?  Toys! I gave her a stuffed porcupine and a red dragon. Both squeak, which makes her very happy.

3. What's your all-time favorite dog story?  I'll have to say my own. It's called Sheep, and it's about a homeless border collie. The sequel, Wolf, will be out this fall.

4. If Maddie could change just one thing about you, what would it be?  I would have to pet her 24 hours a day.

Beautiful ladies
5. In five words, tell us what dogs mean to you:  Faithfulness.

Who needs five words when one says it all! Thanks so much to Valerie Hobbs and her BFF, Maddie, for starting out the new year of Fido and Friend in Five. If you haven't read Valerie's books, put her at the top of your Authors-to-Read-This-Year list! And visit her website to find out more about her and the latest news. It's all good!

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