Annya Vitalevna Koli has written a pleasant and wonderful little story of her life as a young girl. She goes to her new Mum and Father when she is very young, so young she can not run up steps, she is so small she has to walk up them. She finds that she is different than other Collies, what her new family calls her sister and her new aunts and uncles are yellow, black and white, and red. She is blue like her Dog Mum, who is the only dog she has ever seen in her young life.
She and her new dog family have a unique world, a world of ‘two legs’, ‘rooms that move’, ‘kat things’, ‘suns and dark times’ and ‘h’vostiki’. She tells the reader in her own words what she sees and how she lives in her new family and the reader can understand as she grows and her knowledge and vocabulary increase. She has a unique writing style and she is very open about how she and other dogs talk to each other all the time, but no ‘two leg’ understands ‘Dog’. Like most dogs she is bilingual, she speaks Dog and understands Russian very well. As the season changes and goes from ‘warm time’ to ‘cold time’, her new Mum trains her for a show. She and her dog family are very excited on the day she goes to her first show in her quest to be Champion, and fate takes an unusual turn for her and another dog she finds at the ‘show thing’.
This is her first book of a series, she likes to write and is working on her second book now that the ‘cold time’ is here. A quote from Annya: I will fight to protet our family and our house and our green place. I am Koli, this is what we do when we have to.
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When my first warm time was over and a cold time was at our place, Mum said she would start to train me for show. I did not know what this was, this train and show thing, but Aunt Aleesya told me. She said she had been to many show and she was champion. I asked her what these new words mean and she told me. I decided I wanted to be champion, too, so I did what Mum told me to do, how to walk, how to stand and how to run beside her. I am much more fast than Mum so I had to run slow for her. Mum and Father are like all two legs, they run funny and can not run as fast as I can and I think their ears are funny, too, no hair and on the side of their head, not like us with pretty and long ears that stand on the top of our head and we have hair on our ears to keep them warm in the cold time. Two legs don’t have a h’vostik, either, but we do and our h’vostik is long and beautiful with long hair on it. When I was learn to run I learn that if I move my h’vostik I can turn and stop much more fast than a two leg.
We call them two legs because that is all they have, just two legs. We dogs and those kat things have four legs so we are better than the two legs. We can run much more fast than they can and when I was little I saw those kat things walk up the side of our house! I was so surprised and I thought if they can do it, so can I, but I tried to walk up the house and I could not. My Uncle Artem was laughing at me, he told me to stop, that only the kat things can do that, we dogs can not. I asked him why and he told me that the kat things have different feet with sharp kogti on them. My kogti are big but I did not see kogti on the kat things. Uncle Ruslan told me the kat things hide their kogti in their feet. I tried to do that and I can not. I wondered how the kat things can hide their kogti and I can not.
Mum brushed me many times, she told me my hair was perfect and very long. Uncle Ruslan told me I am very pretty, he told me my hair is the longest he has ever seen, he said I was like a blue cloud when I walk. I was happy that he liked me so much and he was very nice to me. When we eat together, because I am young and growing I eat fast. He always tells me to have some of his food, too, so I take just a little so he is happy. My other aunts and uncles, and even my sister Katya, will make noises if I look at them when they eat. Uncle Ruslan told me I make the same noises if someone looks at me while I eat. I did not know this but we both laughed.
Mum train me many times and sometimes Uncle Ruslan and Aunt Aleesya watched me train. Uncle Ruslan told me how fast to run beside Mum and told me I should keep my front legs next to Mum’s legs and not to pull on the lace. Aunt Aleesya told me to hold my head up more sometimes and told me to let my h’vostik out a little more behind me. They both told me to lift my feet high, Uncle Ruslan told me he knew doing this was not fun but he said the two legs at this show thing liked to see us lift our feet high. He said it was almost like a horse but I did not know what this horse thing was then.
After many suns of Mum train me my uncles, my Aunt Aleesya and my Aunt Tatyana one sun told me to sit with them. I could see they were not calm and they were thinking, Aunt Tatyana told me they were nervous but I did not understand that word so I asked her to tell me what it means. She told me and I could see that all four of them were this nervous thing.
Uncle Artem told me he wanted me to be my very best at this show thing, he said he and all my uncles and aunts, even those kat things, wanted me to be champion. Uncle Ruslan told me that at this show thing there would be many two legs and many dogs. He told me that I was special and I asked him why. He said that I am blue and in all his cold times and warm times the only other blue dog he had seen was my Dog Mum and he saw her only one time before I was new. He said I am more pretty than my Dog Mum.