I read some amazing books in 2020 and I would like to share them again with you, updated with the authors most recent releases and their biography.
I enjoyed reading Silent Heroes by Patricia Furstenberg and picked up one of her children’s books and reviewed in April 2020, Joyful Trouble.
This turned into a trip down memory lane, as much of the action takes place in Simon’s Town Naval Station where my father was based 1963 -1965 and where I went to Saturday morning cinema each week and to Christmas Children’s Parties. Including the excitement of seeing Father Christmas arrive by helicopter.
About the book
A humorous read about an incredible dog and how he found his true, yet unexpected calling.
A dog. A friendship. A purpose.
Proven to warm your heart, “Joyful Trouble” is a fast-paced, engaging and funny story.
Patricia Furstenberg paints a charming portrait of the bond between a small girl and boy and their much-loved Grandad. This book takes readers on an unbelievable journey, tackling universal themes and voicing animal rights and the importance of fighting for what is right.
When a Great Dane arrives in a Navy base nobody expects him to win everybody’s hearts, although breaking some rules along the way. But things soon turn sour as somebody threatens to put him to sleep. Who will stand up for this four-legged gentle giant?
A charming celebration of innocence.
My review for Joyful Trouble April 4th 2020
This is a lovely book for all ages, but particularly for children as they are introduced to not just Joyful Trouble and his extraordinary story, but also dogs in general with their amazing abilities and their special bond with humans. This involves some valuable lessons on how best to treat man’s best friend with kindness and respect with the wider view as to how we as humans should behave towards each other.
Great Danes are massive dogs and when they get into trouble, it is difficult not to miss it. Joyful has already bonded with a little boy who goes to boarding school, leaving his best friend behind, which leads to the dog wandering the town and connecting with sailors from the naval base and accompanying them on their trips into Cape Town on the train when off duty. Clearly not appreciated by everyone including grumpy ticket inspectors.
However, a high ranking naval officer sees a solution and this leads to the true story of the enlistment of Joyful Trouble into the Royal Navy. There are several escapades that follow, and it is a wonderful story of how animals and humans find companionship and solace in a time of war, when young men leave home and find themselves in a very rigid and unfamiliar environment. Anyone who has ever been owned by a dog will love the book as well as the characters of Grandad,Tommy and Ana, who are the delightful recipients of his stories of this wonderful dog he was given responsibility for.
At the end of the book, as an added treat, there are some recipes for Vetoek a traditional fried dough bread and some delicious sounding lemon and cinnamon cookies. There is also an introduction to the poem Jock of the Bushveld that will delight any child as they sample the cookies.
A small selection of other books by Patricia Furstenberg (some in Afrikaans)
Patricia Furstenberg is a skilled author, poetess and mother. With a medical degree behind her, Patricia is passionate about mind, brain and education and the psychology behind it.
Her latest book, “Silent Heroes: When Love and Values Are Worth Fighting for”, is a highly emotional read, action-packed, a vivid story of enormous sacrifice and bravery. “Silent Heroes” is a narrative about the value of life. Whose are the spoils-of-war? A new look at the War in Afghanistan, at the MWD, Military Working Dogs and the brave Marines fighting it, but also at the Afghans caught in it.
When she’s not writing Patricia enjoys reading, researching for forthcoming books and traveling with her family. She never counts how many cups of coffee she enjoys in a day.
Patricia lives happily with her husband, children and dogs in sunny South Africa.
Thank you for dropping in today and I hope you have enjoyed my review of Joyful Trouble…and that you will head over to check out Patricia’s books in more details.. thanks Sally