Coaxed through a depression by her golden retriever, Adams, a psychologist and former English professor, was drawn to five women writers who relied on their dogs for emotional support. Flush distracted Elizabeth Barrett after her favorite brother's death. Formidable, eccentric Emily Bronte, who once savagely beat her fierce mastiff, Keeper, for sleeping on her bed, refused to sentimentalize the human-dog bond in Wuthering Heights. Carlo, a Newfoundland, comforted Emily Dickinson in a dark time--when she may have been in love with a married man--and Edith Wharton mourned the death of one of her pooches more than the death of her mother. And Adams suggests that Virginia Woolf, depicting a dog's trauma in her biography of Flush, who was dognapped for ransom, dealt with her own childhood molestation. Lovers of both dogs and classic writers will identify with this sweet, quirky book.--From publisher description.