Bau: Focusing on the World Outside

Sometimes (too often) I am left alone. My favorite activity when this happens is to get comfortable and stare out at life outside. I can do this for hours. I am very good at focusing. Better than most humans, I would say. I just wish that she would move that basket of flowers. It blurs my vision.

Although the dog’s visual acuity is considerably less than that of a normal human, a lot of information  is still getting from his eyes to his brain, even though the focus is “soft” and he won’t be able to make out many details. The overall effect is something like viewing the world through a fine mesh gauze or a piece of cellophane that has been smeared with a light coat of petroleum jelly. The overall outlines of objects are visible, but a lot of the internal details will be blurred and might even be lost. (p. 25)

In How Dogs Think by Stanley Coren.

Bau thinking

dog contemplating life

 

Comments are closed because I will be away for two weeks.

Christoph Fischer: The Body in the Snow

The body in the snow

 

Figuring out the puzzle in a mystery is always a lot of fun and has the added perk of exercising the brain.
The Body in the Snow is a modern version of a classic Agatha Christie plotline. Set in Llangurrey, a remote hamlet tucked miles away from the nearest town, is experiencing the worst snowstorm in twenty years. All roads and motorways have been closed.
I was immediately drawn into this cozy whodunit and the domestic dynamics among the characters.
The author begins by introducing the characters, a bit of their background, their family, marital status and so forth in very broad drawn strokes. You get the picture. There’s a Diva, a happy divorcee, a handyman and a host of other unlikeable characters.
Now, in present time, they find themselves neighbors, along with their past histories, secrets and personalities that clash with each other. The characters have such unique characteristics that I had no problem distinguishing them from each other, as is not always the case when there are multiple characters in a story. One of the more endearing interactions was between Bebe, a fading star and Beth, a rooky but spunky detective.
Fischer’s detective Beth is a lot of fun and brings lightness and charm to the novel. No gore or violence was a plus. It was simply a fun, light relaxing read and a pleasant way to exercise the brain muscles.

J.E. Spina: Hunting Mariah

 

Hunting Mariah

It isn’t because Hunting Mariah reminded me of my own in progress novel that I really loved this book, although that didn’t hurt. There’s a serial killer’s hunger for school girls whom Spina gives reasons for his macabre behavior as she allows us to get inside his insane mind and his intensifying obsessive need to kill. He will stop at nothing until he satisfies his warped hunger to hunt down Mariah.

The novel contains many plot angles that drive it forward. Of course, there’s why Mariah is being hunted by the serial killer in the first place – a mystery which the author is able to maintain throughout the novel. Why is she kept in isolation in a psychiatric ward and what are her memory blanks about? Why can’t Tony, a man who obviously cares deeply for Mariah but for reasons revealed only much later in the novel, return his love for her? Adding more tension are the secondary characters that inhabit this thriller and Spina has the talent to create suspense around each of them.

Although the author makes clear from the beginning who the killer is I kept wondering, as other characters were introduced and more twists were added, if it could be someone else.

Writing under the name Janice Spina the author is known for writing children’s books – at least over a dozen. Hunting Mariah brings J.E. Spina into the respectful world of fast-paced adult thrillers which will keep you turning the pages.

 

Bau: Sense of Smell

I love my morning walks. My new environment is a lot different from my old one and I am beginning to discover all sorts of interesting smells which is super tremendously stimulating.

The percentage of the dog’s brain that is devoted to analyzing smells is actually 40 times larger than that of a human! It’s been estimated that dogs can identify smells somewhere between 1,000 to 10,000 times better than nasally challenged humans can.

https://www.dummies.com/pets/dogs/understanding-a-dogs-sense-of-smell/

smelling

dog enjoying grass perfume