The Dog Stars

Posted: Tuesday, February 19, 2013, 9:01 am

Reserve now!

The Dog Stars

Peter Heller


reserve now!

Jeff R


General fiction

adventure, literary fiction

In brief


Imagine the editors of "Field and Stream," "Soldier of Fortune" and "Poetry" magazine getting together to write a post-apocalyptic novel.

Hig lives near the airport outside of Denver. He's got a 1956 Cessna that he flies regularly; his dog Jasper is his copilot. Hig enjoys fishing, hunting and gardening.

This all probably sounds very idyllic, and it would be but for the fact that Hig also happens to live in a world that's seen 99 percent of the population wiped out by a mysterious disease. It's a world that Hig and his neighbor Bangley have learned to manage, if not necessarily control.

But there's a question gnawing at Hig. Its roots lie in a mysterious radio transmission he picked up in-flight three years ago. What if there's more? What if someone else is out there? It's that question, that yearning, that desire to connect again that sets Hig on a perilous journey beyond the safety of his known world.

Heller's debut novel presents a post-apocalyptic tale that bends genres and blurs lines. It touches on big themes and asks questions as basic as how we are meant to live. With humor and heart, Heller mixes spare, poetic prose with a journalist's eye for authenticity and detail. The result is an engaging adventure story that's equal parts Cormac McCarthy and Jon Krakauer.