My name is Andrew Joyce and I write books for a living. Mandy has been kind enough to allow me a little space on her blog to promote my new novel RESOLUTION: Huck Finn’s Greatest Adventure. I think it’s a good book, but what do I know? Anyway, I’m kinda shy about tooting my own horn. So I think I’ll turn things over to my dog Danny—Danny the Dog. He always has an attitude and usually does not speak highly of me. But please understand that we co-exist as the old Soviet Union and the United States once co-existed. We tolerate each other. So without further ado, here’s Danny.
Andrew took me away from watching reruns of Lassie to help him out here. For a person that works with words for a living, he has very little to say in real life. He wants me to tout his book for him, but I don’t think I will. Instead, I think I’ll tell you how I trained him.
I started in on the training right away—right after I adopted him. We were in the back yard and I was running around sniffing all the wonderful scents and enjoying being a dog when Andrew called me over. He had a ball in his hand and he threw it to the other side of the yard. Then he said, “Fetch” and added, “Go get it, boy!” So that’s what fetch means.
Well, I just looked at him and thought, If you wanted the ball so badly, why did you throw it away to begin with? After Andrew fetched the ball, threw it a few more times, and fetched it a few more times, he got the idea that I’m not a ball-chasing kind of dog. I know some dogs like to chase balls and sticks, but not me.
Next, I had to train him when we took our walks. All us dogs know that walks are not for exercise, doing your “business,” or to enjoy the scenery. Walks are for sniffing where other dogs have gone before. But humans just don’t get it.
At first, Andrew would let me sniff for a few seconds and then tug on the insidious leash he makes me wear. But I planted my feet—all four of them—firmly on the ground. The only thing that moved was my collar when it slipped off my neck. Then he bought me a chest harness. It’s green and looks good against my tan-colored fur if I do say so myself (and I do). Anyway, that didn’t work either; I just dug in deeper. Now Andrew waits patiently while I get my sniffing done.
The last thing I want to tell you about is what Andrew calls my passive resistance. All you dogs out there know how much fun it is to roll around on the grass. Well, I happen to like it a lot—probably more than most of you. And when I’m done, I lay there with a big smile on my face. Of course, Andrew is always in a rush to get home to his vodka. But I’m not moving until I’m ready, so he drags me along the soft grass like a sack of potatoes (it feels good) until he sees I’m not getting up. Then I’m left alone to get up under my own volition. I got that idea when I heard about some guy named Gandhi.
Okay, that’s it for now. I want you dogs out there that are reading this to start training your humans as I have trained mine. They will thank you for it and they will be much happier.
Oh yeah, I almost forgot—go out and buy Andrew’s book.
This is Andrew again. On behalf of Danny and myself, I would like to thank Mandy for having us over. It’s been a real pleasure.
It is 1896 in the Yukon Territory, Canada. The largest gold strike in the annals of human history has just been made; however, word of the discovery will not reach the outside world for another year.
By happenstance, a fifty-nine-year-old Huck Finn and his lady friend, Molly Lee, are on hand, but they are not interested in gold. They have come to that neck of the woods seeking adventure.
Someone should have warned them, “Be careful what you wish for.”
When disaster strikes, they volunteer to save the day by making an arduous six hundred mile journey by dog sled in the depths of a Yukon winter. They race against time, nature, and man. With the temperature hovering around seventy degrees below zero, they must fight every day if they are to live to see the next.
On the frozen trail, they are put upon by murderers, hungry wolves, and hostile Indians, but those adversaries have nothing over the weather. At seventy below, your spit freezes a foot from your face. Your cheeks burn—your skin turns purple and black as it dies from the cold. You are in constant danger of losing fingers and toes to frostbite.
It is into this world that Huck and Molly race.
They cannot stop. They cannot turn back. They can only go on. Lives hang in the balance—including theirs.