The Dogs of Babel by Carolyn Parkhurst
Reviewed by Renée Bosman, Government Information Librarian
When linguist Paul Iverson arrives home to find his wife dead following a fall from their backyard apple tree, he is confused and heartbroken. Was it an accident? She had never previously expressed an interest in tree-climbing. Was she picking apples? Did she intentionally fall or jump? He wasn't aware that she was unhappy or contemplating suicide. The only witness to Lexy's death was her Rhodesian Ridgeback, Lorelei. As a linguist, Iverson knew of previous attempts to teach dogs to talk and he decides to attempt the same with Lorelei to discover what she saw that fateful day. In the meantime, he finds other clues that raise more questions about Lexy's last day. As Paul mourns and struggles with the mysteries surrounding his wife's death, he reflects on their marriage and what it means to truly know and understand those that you love.