The New York Times opinion columnist and author of She's Not There, a memoir about her gender transition, considers her personal history through the lens of seven memorable pet dogs and their impact on her life.
Reading Boylan’s memoirs is like working on a three-dimensional puzzle that mysteriously creates space for more pieces. Each of Boylan’s memoirs, complete unto itself, yields insight into the author and those closest to her, and Good Boy is as affecting and funny as anything Boylan has ever written ... Boylan has mastered the art of setting scenes ... the dogs...possess a purpose beyond amusing and delighting us. Clearly, they embody human qualities.
Boylan’s experiences are expressed with a captivating blend of deep reflection and wry humor, delving into her discomfort in her skin as a young boy, struggles in relationships, the death of her father, her transition to womanhood, and her child’s own transition. The dogs are wonderfully portrayed with all of their quirks. Boylan makes astute observations about the way that dogs reflect back their owner’s struggles, sometimes in unexpected ways ... Boylan’s candor and distinctive writing style will appeal to readers of reflective memoirs. A solid choice for libraries looking to expand their LGBTQ biography collections.
The path was not easy, yet [Boylan] injects warmth, humor and spirituality into its retelling ... will be relatable to those who believe dogs can teach us about unconditional love—or at least patient understanding. Though pet stories can veer into the saccharine, rest assured that this memoir does not ... Though it’s a great book for dog lovers, isn’t a feel-good story about the unbreakable bond between human and beast. It’s a chronicle about the enduring messiness of humans, and how we’re worthy of love anyway.