A golden retriever narrates a hilarious, heart-tugging tale of a dog and his humans as he tries to keep his family together while everything around them falls apart. Ever since Cosmo became a big brother to Max ten years ago, he’s known what his job was: to protect his boy and make him happy. Through many good years marked by tennis balls and pilfered turkey, torn-up toilet paper and fragrant goose poop, Cosmo has doggedly kept his vow. Until recently, his biggest problems were the evil tutu-wearing sheepdog he met on Halloween and the arthritis in his own joints. But now, with Dad-scented blankets appearing on the couch and arguing voices getting louder, Cosmo senses a tougher challenge ahead. When Max gets a crazy idea to teach them both a dance routine for a contest, how can Cosmo refuse, stiff hips or no? Max wants to remind his folks of all the great times they’ve had together dancing — and make them forget about the “d” word that’s making them all cry. Told in the open, optimistic, unintentionally humorous voice of a golden retriever, I, Cosmo will grab readers from the first page — and remind them that love and loyalty transcend whatever life throws your way.
Narrator Cosmo, a 13-year-old hound, may be getting up there in dog years and suffering from slight arthritis, but he remains dedicated to his purpose in life: "doggedly" protecting his boy 12-year-old Max and his family. Lately, though, Max and his younger sister, Emmaline, have been anxious about their parents' fighting. Despite their uncle Reggie's return from Afghanistan, a source of joy to all, things remain strained and angry, and Max fears that he will be separated from Cosmo half the time if his parents split up. When Reggie, a dog trainer, takes Max and Cosmo to a club where dogs and their humans learn to canine freestyle, training to compete for a role in a dance film, Max decides that winning the contest will keep his family together. Cosmo, who has always longed to dance, commits wholeheartedly despite reservations ("My bones are too achy"). Sorosiak (Wild Blue Wonder) offers Cosmo a combination of wisdom and innocence that feel truly dog-like as his warm voice conveys Max and Cosmo's mutual affection the steady and heartwarming constant in both their lives. Touching, bittersweet, and true, this book will appeal to anyone who has loved a pet. Ages 8 12. \n