doG Backwards - opening chapters

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Literary Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic

Michael works in an office and is mourning the loss of his five-year-old daughter, Milly.

Barbara has her own cleaning company and the death of her stepfather, Eric, hangs heavy on her conscience.

Connor is ten and, despite having the love of his aunt and uncle, still misses his mother, who has been dead for over a years.

Liam lives in his big family home all by himself, where he hides from his past and yearns for the return of his mother, father and sister, all of whom are gone for good.

Shelley, friend and lover to Liam, also has her losses, but keeps these a secret from him.

In doG Backwards, the lives of these characters intertwine. However, it isn’t their loss that brings them together – but opportunity.

Michael, Barbara, Connor and Shelley all receive letters from the mysterious ‘reverse programme’ – a secret experiment that makes them an offer beyond comprehension: the chance to meet with the dead for one hour. Michael’s reaction is very positive: he simply cannot believe his luck. The others, however, do not react in the same way: Shelley is disgusted, Barbara cannot face making a decision and ten-year-old Connor simply doesn’t understand.

Michael has to consider his estranged wife, Susan: she has not been chosen for the programme and her devastated reaction leaves their already fragile marriage in tatters.

Barbara has served time in prison for her part in her stepfather’s death, so she is subjected to additional rules, costs and security, and the experience is likely to leave her penniless.

Connor has not only lost his mother, but also his father. So he is faced with a dilemma that no ten-year-old boy should ever have to face: which one to choose?

Shelley takes a different approach – with Liam’s help, she attempts to sell her letter to make money. However, before she can do this, the letter is stolen and makes its way to someone else - Michael’s wife, Susan.

As the close of the novel, the ‘reverse programme’ has changed the lives of the characters forever: Shelley has finally accepted her loss; Barbara finds that one difficult reunion has led to another invaluable one; and Connor makes a choice that reunites him with both his mother and his father.

Michael and Susan’s stories directly contrast. Michael’s shock decision leaves him empty and alone; whilst Susan, the novel’s outsider, has pursued a dream she was denied and ends up on an ambitious and inspiring journey. Neither Susan nor the ‘reverse programme’ officials know where this will take her, but all are agreed on one thing: they must simply sit back and let nature take its course…

Table of Contents

doG Backwards - opening chapters

Michael works in an office and is mourning the loss of his five-year-old daughter, Milly.

Barbara has her own cleaning company and the death of her stepfather, Eric, hangs heavy on her conscience.

Connor is ten and, despite having the love of his aunt and uncle, still misses his mother, who has been dead for over a years.

Liam lives in his big family home all by himself, where he hides from his past and yearns for the return of his mother, father and sister, all of whom are gone for good.

Shelley, friend and lover to Liam, also has her losses, but keeps these a secret from him.

In doG Backwards, the lives of these characters intertwine. However, it isn’t their loss that brings them together – but opportunity.

Michael, Barbara, Connor and Shelley all receive letters from the mysterious ‘reverse programme’ – a secret experiment that makes them an offer beyond comprehension: the chance to meet with the dead for one hour. Michael’s reaction is very positive: he simply cannot believe his luck. The others, however, do not react in the same way: Shelley is disgusted, Barbara cannot face making a decision and ten-year-old Connor simply doesn’t understand.

Michael has to consider his estranged wife, Susan: she has not been chosen for the programme and her devastated reaction leaves their already fragile marriage in tatters.

Barbara has served time in prison for her part in her stepfather’s death, so she is subjected to additional rules, costs and security, and the experience is likely to leave her penniless.

Connor has not only lost his mother, but also his father. So he is faced with a dilemma that no ten-year-old boy should ever have to face: which one to choose?

Shelley takes a different approach – with Liam’s help, she attempts to sell her letter to make money. However, before she can do this, the letter is stolen and makes its way to someone else - Michael’s wife, Susan.

As the close of the novel, the ‘reverse programme’ has changed the lives of the characters forever: Shelley has finally accepted her loss; Barbara finds that one difficult reunion has led to another invaluable one; and Connor makes a choice that reunites him with both his mother and his father.

Michael and Susan’s stories directly contrast. Michael’s shock decision leaves him empty and alone; whilst Susan, the novel’s outsider, has pursued a dream she was denied and ends up on an ambitious and inspiring journey. Neither Susan nor the ‘reverse programme’ officials know where this will take her, but all are agreed on one thing: they must simply sit back and let nature take its course…
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doG Backwards

Chapter 2 The house was cold when Liam got home from work and a damp, autumnal smell infiltrated his nostrils, as he took his boots o... Read Chapter