Why this book?
When I was very young, we had a golden retriever called Nesta. While we were away on holiday one year Nesta was put in kennels. Clearly, she thought that she was there by mistake and that her duty was to find us, so she dug herself out of the kennels, crossed three very busy roads, and somehow, with that extraordinary homing instinct a dog can have, made her way back to our house - a distance of 15 km. When we finally returned, there she was at the door, starving and weak, but happy and supremely confident that she’d done the right thing. If you’ve ever had a dog do that, then Lassie is the story for you. The movie is good but has nothing on the book which should be part of everyone’s growing up: the family’s poverty, the dog’s courage, and loyalty - all this has stayed with me, become part of my marrow and I now, finally, perhaps 40 years after reading Lassie, have a collie of my own.