Parkhurst, Carolyn. The dogs of Babel, a novel.

Author:Theiss, Nola
Position:Brief Article - Young Adult Review - Book Review

PARKHURST, Carolyn. The dogs of Babel, a novel. Little, Brown, Back Bay. 264p. c2003. 0-316-77850-8. $13.95. SA

When the narrator's wife, Lexy, dies in a fall from a backyard apple tree, the only witness is their dog, Lorelei. In his grief, Paul, who is a trained linguist, decides that the dog knows something about the death and tries to teach him to communicate. Even he realizes how ludicrous this is, but he can't seem to move on to the next phase of his life until he solves the mystery of her death. Gradually he gathers clues that Lexy left him and comes to understand what really happened. The book is about communication and how difficult it is to connect with another person and yet how desperately we need to. Some of the symbolism in the story is obvious; for instance, Lexy is a mask-maker and a truth hider. Paul is a linguist who can't understand his wife's needs until...

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