Cover image for Fetch : how a bad dog brought me home : a graphic memoir
Title:
Fetch : how a bad dog brought me home : a graphic memoir
Author:
Georges, Nicole J., author, artist.
Publication Information:
Boston ; New York : Mariner Books, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2017.
Physical Description:
314 pages : illustrations ; 26 cm
Summary:
The author describes her life with her misbehaved dog, a pet that saw her through many changes in life over the course of fifteen years.
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780544577831
Format :
Book

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PN6727 .G466 Z46 2017 Graphic Novel Central Library
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PN6727 .G466 Z46 2017 Graphic Novel Graphic Novels
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Summary

Summary

From an award-winning artist, a memoir of life with a difficult, beloved dog that will resonate with anybody who has ever had a less than perfectly behaved pet

When Nicole Georges was sixteen she adopted Beija, a dysfunctional shar-pei/corgi mix--a troublesome combination of tiny and attack, just like teenaged Nicole herself. For the next fifteen years, Beija would be the one constant in her life. Through depression, relationships gone awry, and an unmoored young adulthood played out against the backdrop of the Portland punk scene, Beija was there, wearing her "Don't Pet Me" bandana.

Georges's gorgeous graphic novel Fetch chronicles their symbiotic, codependent relationship and probes what it means to care for and be responsible to another living thing--a living thing that occasionally lunges at toddlers. Nicole turns to vets, dog whisperers, and even a pet psychic for help, but it is the moments of accommodation, adaption, and compassion that sustain them. Nicole never successfully taught Beija "sit," but in the end, Beija taught Nicole how to stay.


Author Notes

Nicole J. Georges is a professor, writer, and illustrator, who has been publishing her own zines and comics for twenty years. She is the author of the Lambda Award-winning graphic memoir Calling Dr. Laura and the diary comic Invincible Summer . She lives in Portland, Oregon.


Reviews 3

Booklist Review

*Starred Review* A teenage Georges (Calling Dr. Laura, 2012) surprises her boyfriend with a dachshund puppy. In four words, it doesn't go well. They name the adorable, neurotic mutt Beija and love her beyond reason. Unfortunately, the list of Beija's enemies starts with the teens' parents and grows by many unhappy landlords and neighbors during several subsequent failed attempts to find Beija a better home. But that settles it: Georges and Beija are a team, and they will be one another's constant for the next 16 years. In telling her dog's story, Georges tells others of a feral childhood that left her craving stability, of discovering her creative voice and her career, of love and relationships, of learning empathy from books. She fights for Beija, protects her, and together they grow up. Georges in her cat-eye glasses and changing hairstyles and capricious, sweet-faced, small-bodied Beija appear in most drawings, while occasional text on ribboning scrolls heralds comic and serious realizations (Canine Non Grata, or I believed Beija was my horcrux). This dual bildungsroman of a woman and her pet is a touching tale of how a friend, even a difficult, four-legged one, can become a kind of home to live in.--Bostrom, Annie Copyright 2017 Booklist


Publisher's Weekly Review

"Every dog manual will tell you not to pick the dog hiding at the back of the cage," writes Georges (Calling Dr. Laura) in her second graphic memoir. Yet, in the midst of her own semi-feral childhood as a high school drop-out, Nicole adopts Beija, a mutt with an overly large shar-pei head, stubby legs, and a long dachshund body. Beija grows into a temperamental and challenging companion, with a hatred of men and a tendency to lunge at small children, and accompanies Nicole and her boyfriend to Portland, Ore., into a punk house full of underground musicians and artists. Fifteen years and many relationships later, Beija is still by Nicole's side, having taught her the true definition of loyalty, love, and personal boundaries. Drawn in black and white with watercolor washes and elegant hand lettering, this book is an homage to classic zine aesthetics that captures an incomparable friendship. An honest, moving portrayal of the essential bond between humans and animals. Agent: Holly Bemiss, Susan Rabiner Literary Agency. (July) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.


Library Journal Review

Lambda Award-winning author/artist Georges's (Calling Dr. Laura) prickly, moving account of growing up with a misbehaving mutt begins near the end of the duo's time together. The author is hosting a Quinceañera for Beija, a shar-pei/corgi mix with issues, when the dog lunges at two children, one a toddler. This latest eruption sends Georges and Beija to the basement to reflect on their history. A 15-year-old Georges had rescued Beija in a misbegotten attempt to heal her boyfriend's childhood traumas. That didn't go as planned, nor did several tries to find the dog another home, so Beija becomes the author's one constant, sticking with her through car wrecks and college evasions, a move from the suburbs to a Portland, OR, punk flophouse, and the transition from dating boys to dating girls. One sees the influence of Lynda Barry in chapters about the artist's life as a "feral child," drawn differently than those featuring teen/adult "Georges." A West Coast vibe infuses her quest to rehabilitate her bad dog, with visits to a pet psychic, nods to Dog Whisperer Cesar Millan, and a stint working at an animal refuge. When Georges finds a lump while bathing Beija, the inevitable final act is touchingly, beautifully conveyed. Verdict Part grief memoir, part coming-of-age story, part feminist manifesto, this well-written, splendidly illustrated title would be a good YA crossover. It will stir the hearts of misunderstood riot grrrls, owners of unruly canines, and LGBTQ readers.-Liz French, Library Journal © Copyright 2017. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.