Book Review–Marley and Me: Life and Love With the World’s Worst Dog by John Grogan



This is the 95th book from my 114 in 2014 Reading Challenge.


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Marley and Me: Life and Love With the World’s Worst Dog by John Grogan
Published 2005 by William Morrow


John and Jenny were just beginning their life together. They were young and in love, with a perfect little house and not a care in the world. Then they brought home Marley, a wiggly yellow furball of a puppy. Life would never be the same.

Marley quickly grew into a barreling, ninety-seven-pound streamroller of a Labrador retriever, a dog like no other. He crashed through screen doors, gouged through drywall, flung drool on guests, stole women’s undergarments, and ate nearly everything he could get his mouth around, including couches and fine jewelry. Obedience school did no good—Marley was expelled. Neither did the tranquilizers the veterinarian prescribed for him with the admonishment, “Don’t hesitate to use these.”

And yet Marley’s heart was pure. Just as he joyfully refused any limits on his behavior, his love and loyalty were boundless, too. Marley shared the couple’s joy at their first pregnancy, and their heartbreak over the miscarriage. He was there when babies finally arrived and when the screams of a seventeen-year-old stabbing victim pierced the night. Marley shut down a public beach and managed to land a role in a feature-length movie, always winning hearts as he made a mess of things. Through it all, he remained steadfast, a model of devotion, even when his family was at its wit’s end. Unconditional love, they would learn, comes in many forms.




I’ve been meaning to read this one for a while, but just never got around to it. Maybe the timing is perfect, since I may have not appreciated this book quite as much if I’d read it before. A few months ago, I lost my own fur babies (ferrets). The main reason I finally decided to pluck this one off the shelf is because we have our own little trouble-making dog and I thought it would be a good, relatable read. It’s nice to know that our dog isn’t too much of a troublemaker now.

The movie is good and emotional, but the book is even more so. I laughed, read out parts I found particularly amusing to my fiance’, smiled, and of course, wept. I knew the ending was coming, had found the movie version pretty sad, but it’s absolutely nothing compared to the book. The book also really shows how much patience this family had in regards to Marley, and concerning unconditional love.

If you are a dog or pet lover, this one is for you. Just be warned that it is a very emotional read. It’s even more touching, I think, because it’s true. I hope writing this has helped heal John and his family. I am truly sorry for your loss.









2 thoughts on “Book Review–Marley and Me: Life and Love With the World’s Worst Dog by John Grogan

  1. I loved this book so much. I bawled my eyes out when I read it. Of course, at that time I had lost several pets through the years. I was very upset to hear about your fur babies and I know it was hard to accept a new furry into your life. Your new trouble-maker will be more fun that trouble!

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