Sunday, 30 November 2014

The Dog Boy by Noel Anenberg



                The Dog Boy is an emotionally entertaining novel set just at the end of WWII in Los Angeles. It follows Phosie, an African-American maid who moves to Los Angeles to be with her son who was wounded in the war and is in the hospital recovering. She works as a maid for Lucille Goldberg as a means to making a living during her son’s recovery and encounters Jakie, Lucille’s brother, and Lucille’s son who believes he is a dog and acts and lives like one at all times, thus the title of the book. Racial issues are at the forefront of this book as care for Phosie’s son is not what it should be due to his color. Also explored quite beautifully is the relationship Phosie has with Lucille to whom she becomes somewhat of a mother figure, albeit one who knows her place. The key relationship is between Phosie and the little dog boy to whom she also becomes somewhat of a mother as well. The author does a brilliant job of exploring the life of an African-American maid during this time in post war Los Angeles without making it the main point of the book. Instead, the focal point is Phosie herself, a strong woman who only wants the best for her son. I really enjoyed this book and found myself completely taken in by the story. I read this on my ereader which formatted it to digital form perfectly and the cover was intriguing as to how it correlated to the book title. This is definitely worth the read.