Jonathan Unleashed

Meg Rosoff has been known to weave dogs into her crossover stories for young adults and teenagers (How I Live Now, There Is No Dog). In Jonathan Unleashed, canines take the lead as Rosoff makes her first foray into adult fiction with a romantic comedy about 20-something Jonathan Trefoil, who is struggling to launch his adult life on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. Jonathan lives in a sublet and has a job he loathes writing advertising copy for an office supply company. He also isn't sure how to placate his pushy, ambitious girlfriend, Julie, who works for a bridal magazine that only increases her zealousness to tie the knot. When Jonathan's brother, James, takes an engineering job in Dubai, he asks Jonathan to care for his two dogs for six months, and Jonathan forges an instant bond with them. Dante is a super-smart and hyper-aware border collie, out of his herding element amid the hustle and bustle of New York City. Sissy is a spaniel who is more sweet-natured and much lower maintenance. The dogs' attentiveness to Jonathan--and vice versa--add a refreshing new dimension to Jonathan's thorny, uncertain life, leading him on a journey that exposes him to new places and people.

Rosoff has a great handle on the nuances of contemporary dog culture. She writes big, funny scenes that heighten the over-active imagination of her very likable hero as he "goes to the dogs" in all areas of his life, hilariously liberated from the stifling confines of his existence. --Kathleen Gerard, blogger at Reading Between the Lines

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