Book Review: Cowboy & Wills…and a Giveaway!
There are very few dog stories (movies, TV, books) that don’t leave my weeping like a baby. I have a special place in my heart for dogs, I’ve grown up with dogs, and I’ve experienced the loss of a much-loved pet. But Monica Holloway’s story of her son Wills and his best friend Cowboy touched my heart in a way that no movie or book ever has. Monica has a unique ability to bring letters on a page to life. With every sentence and experience I felt like I was right there with her, living through her heartache and joys, ups and downs.
Monica’s son Wills has high-functioning autism. As she struggles to understand and deal with the diagnosis herself, reading books and seeking the help of experts, she also desperately wants to create a normal, happy life for her wonderful son. We quickly learn that everyday activities aren’t so normal for Monica and her son. Wills is a very literal little boy. He doesn’t understand sarcasm, joking, or teasing. He craves routine and is frightened by crowds and loud noises. But he has a heart of gold.
To help Wills (and herself) cope with this life changing diagnosis the family heads to the pet store to find comfort and an opportunity for Wills to come out of his shell just a little bit further. After collecting a string of pets, from fish to hamsters, Wills finally gets what he’s always wanted…a dog. Cowboy, a Golden Retriever puppy, joins the family on Christmas day. And from that moment on, the two are inseparable.
With the help of Cowboy, Wills’ world begins to open up. Bit by bit little breakthroughs occur. Monica and her husband begin to celebrate these little victories…making messes and getting dirty, eating in restaurants, initiating conversations, playing with classmates and going on playdates, and talking on the phone.
I know you will enjoy this book as much as I did…despite the tears! You’ll smile and laugh as you see things from Wills’ perspective, dance and celebrate Wills’ victories and breakthroughs right along with Monica. And you’ll empathize with her as she details her struggles, fears, and efforts to try and make it ‘all better.’
I’m so excited to be able to give away a signed copy of Monica’s book, Cowboy & Wills!! Simply leave your favorite pet memory in the comments section below by December 21. One lucky winner will be selected using www.random.org.
UPDATE: Congratulations Jill, you are the winner of Monica’s signed book Cowboy & Wills!