The Dog Who Was There Review

Product Details

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About the Book

No one expected Barley to have an encounter with the Messiah. He was homeless, hungry, and struggling to survive in first century Jerusalem. Most surprisingly, he was a dog. But through Barley’s eyes, the story of a teacher from Galilee comes alive in a way we’ve never experienced before.

Barley’s story begins in the home of a compassionate woodcarver and his wife who find Barley as an abandoned, nearly-drowned pup. Tales of a special teacher from Galilee are reaching their tiny village, but when life suddenly changes again for Barley, he carries the lessons of forgiveness and love out of the woodcarver’s home and through the dangerous roads of Roman-occupied Judea.

On the outskirts of Jerusalem, Barley meets a homeless man and petty criminal named Samid. Together, Barley and his unlikely new master experience fresh struggles and new revelations. Soon Barley is swept up into the current of history, culminating in an unforgettable encounter with the truest master of all as he bears witness to the greatest story ever told.

My Perspective

I wasn’t really sure what to expect from this book. I have never read from the dog point of view before, and I could not figure out how the story of Jesus would come out. But I took a chance on it, hoping to gain something and broaden my reading horizons a little bit. I am happy to report that I was pleasantly surprised with how much I enjoyed this book!

First I have to comment on reading from the point of view of a dog. It has certainly given me a new perspective of my own dog’s world and how she sees things! It was amazing to me how involved the author got in this dog’s head. I imagine he must have spent time watching the world from a dog’s level in order to write so beautifully and realistically. I loved Barley and going along his journey to different families. The images of each and every scene that played out before Barley were vivid in my mind and I felt like I was there with him.

Next is the story of Jesus. Although not referred to directly as Jesus in this story, any Christian will easily know that the Teacher referenced in the book, or the Kind Man as he was sometimes referred to is Jesus. What an interesting and yet powerful way to get the message of Jesus across. So many good points were brought up throughout the book that we can relate to ourselves. Even character transformations that happened before our eyes, because of Jesus’ word – that can certainly happen today as well. I felt because of the way Jesus was presented that even a “non-Christian” would enjoy this and perhaps have an eye-opening moment.

I received a complimentary copy of this book through the Fiction Guild. I was not required to write a favorable review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.


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