‘The hills bring into focus just how much we love being with dogs.’ In Never Leave the Dog Behind, award-winning writer Helen Mort explores the relationship between dogs, mountains and the people who love them. She meets search and rescue dogs, interviews climbers, and tells her own transformative story of falling in love with a whippet named Bell.
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‘We live in a world populated by dog lovers, where many of us regard them as members of the family. We are fascinated by them: either anthropomorphising our pets or obsessing about the ways they differ from us. And mountains – theatres of risk, drama and heroism – provide the perfect stage for us to enact our canine fascination in all its pathos and poetry. In short, the hills bring into focus just how much we love being with dogs.’ Dogs specialise in getting on with humans, and tales of faithful hounds in hostile environments form part of our cultural history. Award-winning writer Helen Mort sets out to understand the singular relationship between dogs, mountains and the people who love them. Along the way, she meets search and rescue dogs, interviews climbers and spends time on the hills with hounds. The book is also a personal memoir, telling the author’s own story of falling in love with a whippet called Bell during a transformative year in the Lake District. Never Leave the Dog Behind is a compelling account of mountain adventures and misadventures, and captures the unbridled joy of heading to the hills with a four-legged friend.
Helen Mort is a writer, trail runner and climber who lives in Sheffield. She teaches creative writing at Manchester Metropolitan University and has published two poetry collections with Chatto & Windus. Her latest, No Map Could Show Them, explores the history of women’s mountaineering. She has been shortlisted for the Costa prize and the T.S. Eliot prize, and in 2014 won the Fenton Aldeburgh First Collection prize. Her first novel is forthcoming from Chatto in 2019. She is also the author of Lake District Trail Running and has written for Alpinist and Climb. In 2017, she was a judge for the Man Booker International Prize, and chair of judges for the Boardman Tasker Award for Mountain Literature.
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