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Publisher's Summary

A true story of acceptance, perseverance, and the possibility of love and redemption as evocative, charming, and powerful as the New York Times best seller Following Atticus.
Drawn by an online post, Tom Ryan adopted Will, a frightened, deaf, and mostly blind elderly dog, and brought him home to live with him and Atticus. The only owners Will ever knew had grown too fragile to take care of themselves or of him. Ultimately Will was left at a kill shelter in New Jersey.
Tom hoped to give Will a place to die with dignity amid the rustic beauty of the White Mountains of his New Hampshire home. But when Will bites him numerous times and acts out in violent displays, Tom realizes he is in for a challenge.
With endless patience and the kind of continued empathy Tom has nurtured in his relationship with Atticus, Will eventually begins to thrive. Soon the angry, hurt, depressed, and near-death oldster has transformed into a happy, gamboling companion with a puppy-like zest for discovery. Will perseveres for two and a half years, inspiring hundreds of thousands of Tom and Atticus' fans with his courage, resilience, and unforgettable heart.
A story of a dog and an indelible bond that is beautiful, heartbreaking, uplifting, and unforgettable, Will's Red Coat honors the promise held in every living creature, at any stage of life.
©2017 Thomas F. Ryan (P)2017 HarperCollins Publishers
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Gillian on 05-06-17

Wildflowers And Drunken Butterfly Dances

An act of kindness leads one on a spiritual journey of a lifetime. A dog at death's door, deaf, blind, thrown away and forgotten learns to rear up and kick his front legs out, learns to circle in drunken butterfly dances of joy: Here I am! I'm alive!
"Will's Red Coat" is perhaps even more deeply heartfelt than the more philosophical "Following Atticus" (which was truly brilliant), as it is about sunlight and shadow, life and death, serving without ego, and the simple joys of living each moment here and now, second by glorious second.
What lovely prose! Ryan captures the beauty of their surroundings and infuses every dying leaf with jubilant color, every wildflower with spine-tingling fragrances that are enough to make Will circle with joy, using what vision remains him to spy each petal.
This is a fairy tale of a story: a backyard that opens to an Enchanted Forest, a wild bear who is smitten with the three, apple-taking beavers, a spider who needs a prompt every now and then to respect their space as they respect hers. It's a story of compassion on every level, of empathy lived and shared.
There's a word in Japanese that means, "to repair with gold"--a technique of fixing broken pottery with melted gold which makes the broken even more valuable than the whole. And how fragile we all are. How very, very beautiful.
What a journey I've just been on with Tom, Atticus, and the irrepressible Will. One I will never forget.

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9 of 13 people found this review helpful

By Kathy on 09-07-17

Short and Succinct

I absolutely loved Tom's first book, Finding Atticus.

I really struggled with this book. I am the sole dissenter, it seems. I quit two hours before the end.

I didn't like his flowery writing and the extreme anthropomorphism--you will never convince me any dog appreciates beauty of the mountain scenery. Perhaps, just perhaps, the dog is feeling his owner's high?

I hated the fact he took in a dog that bit him daily and he laughed at it. I hated the tone of almost religious reverence his voice took on as the book continued on.

I hated the minute details of his daily life with Will, got so tired of hearing of the hand knitted afghans, the flower deliveries for a dog, every breath the dog took.
Is this real or was it done to enable a second book?

Sorry, you must feel I have become a curmudgeon. This book is for extreme animal lovers and although I am a confirmed dog lover, it appears I am not extreme enough.

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2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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