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Co-owner of Aza & Hilary

Ryoga loves We Are Water Protectors, written by Carole Lindstrom, and Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa author. The colorful, sweeping, compelling illustrations by Michaela Goade are based on all sorts of waves and ripples. Ryoga's favorite people love reading about how water is the basis of all life, dogs and people included. We must work together to protect water against the black snake. Of course, any puppy knows that the black snake isn't a real snake! The snake represents fossil fuels that will destroy the planet and ruin our life giving water. What an important message to learn early in life. What a beautiful life affirming book.

Lately my human Aza has been growing rounder in the tummy. Full of canine curiosity, I researched further and learned of an astounding phenomenon called Human Pregnancy! Apparently I will not be the puppy of the family for long. Eager to expand upon my knowledge, I began reading a book by none other than my human's mother Louise Erdrich. The Blue Jay's Dance is an exquisitely written personal tale of pregnancy and early motherhood. This lovely little book is populated with minute details of the environment and creatures surrounding Louise, funny stories about TV dinners, interesting recipes, and shows how the journey of parenthood can enrich an artists process. Reading this book I feel I can begin to understand what the author, my human, and many other pregnant mothers experience: the sweetness of creating life. What a thrill for a male dog. There are a few too many cats for my taste, but I do feel resonance with the kind-eyed dog of the family. I recommend for anyone who is pregnant, knows someone who is pregnant, or formerly existed as a pregnancy (i.e. every mammal!).

As a longtime and avid Haruki Murakami reader, I have oft dreamt of getting my paws on his first two novellas Hear the Wind Sing and Pinball, 1973. Until now, they were available only in the author's native Japanese or tragically long out of print English editions. Now we are gifted with both books in one volume, Murakami fans rejoice! Those who are familiar with his other works will enjoy seeing the birth of common Murakami themes such as cooking spaghetti, absent and/or mysterious women, and the like. Anyone new to Murakami will get a glimpse into the introspective, strange, yet relatable inner world of his narrators. They may be eager for more after reading this one, and fortunately the prolific Murakami has written many a novel, short story collection, and even a few nonfiction. An extra bonus is the introduction by Haruki himself, where he tells of his writerly beginnings. Highly recommended by this particular pooch!