This being so, it's interesting to come across a book that, though entirely realist in every other way, has (almost) no dogs in it:
Dog people, the implication is, are a bit simple-minded, really -- exactly the sort of people that would entrust their money to the likes of Julian and Nigel, and be left the poorer and possibly the wiser for it. Bankers like Julian and Nigel, on the other hand, are too savvy to trust anybody: their only relation with trust is to exploit it. And what creature more trusting than a dog? But the problem, from the banker's point of view, is that a dog's trust is totally unexploitable: dumb creatures that they are, they have no money to invest. So what's the point, really, of a dog? Except,of course, in keeping dog people's idealised vision of the world intact for long enough for Julian and Nigel to cash in on it. Other people's dogs may yet lead to other people's money.Two people are out exercising their dogs. As they pass Julian and Nigel, sitting wrapped against the early chill at a table under the mulberry tree -- just coming into leaf -- they wave cheerily. Dog people, Julian thinks, have an idealised vision of a world in which everybody is matey and loves animals and likes a chat.
In that other world, then, where everybody is matey (in fact, in the park, where dog people go to be matey and have a chat) Simon met Charlie, the Golden retriever. They got on so well that Charlie's owner brought him over to visit Simon at home. The visit was a great success:
Possession, Charlie seems to be saying, is nine-tenths of the law. As for Simon: