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Dog Boy/Hornung, Eva/Paper/1921520094/S023-G
In a deserted Moscow apartment building four-year-old Romochka waits for Uncle to come home. Outside the snow is falling, but after a few days hunger drives Romochka outside, his mother's voice ringing in his ears. Don't talk to strangers. Overlooked by passers-by, he follows a street dog to her lair in a deserted basement at the edge of the city. There he joins four puppies suckling at their mother's teats.
And so begins Romochka's life as a dog.
The story of the child raised by beasts has fascinated through the ages, but Eva Hornung has created such a vivid and original telling, so utterly emotionally convincing, that it becomes not just new but definitive: yes, this is how it would be.
Taking us with Romochka into the world of his dog-family, she shows through his clear, alien eyes the disintegrationùand obdurate persistenceùof community, of family; the uncertain embrace of society, the consequences of social breakdown and exclusion. And in doing this she shows us our brutal, tender, frightened selves; exploring what our animal nature brings to our humanity.
Dogboy is the most visceral, utterly amazing novel you will read this year.