In 2016, Dion Leonard, a seasoned ultramarathon runner, unexpectedly stumbled across a little stray dog while competing in a gruelling 155-mile race across the Gobi Desert. The lovable pup, who earned the name ‘Gobi’, proved that what she lacked in size, she more than made up for in heart, as she went step for step with Dion over the treacherous Tian Shan Mountains, managing to keep pace with him for nearly 80 miles.
As Dion witnessed the incredible determination of this small animal, he felt something change within himself. In the past, he had always focused on winning and being the best, but his goal now was simply to make sure that his new friend was safe, nourished and hydrated. Although Dion did not finish first, he felt he had won something far greater and promised to bring Gobi back to the UK for good to become a new addition to his family. This was the start of a journey neither of them would ever forget with a roller coaster ride of drama, grief, heartbreak, joy and love that changed their lives forever.
Finding Gobi is the ultimate story of hope, of resilience and of friendship, proving once again, that dogs really are ‘man’s best friend.’
A lovely, honest, heartfelt memoir from an ultramarathon runner. Dion shares how meeting a little dog in China during a gruelling race changed and enriched his life.
This true-life story has a happy ending, so you know from the beginning whatever happens things turn out well for Dion and his doggy friend.
Dion is a driven individual whose childhood ended abruptly with the death of the man he called dad. Much of Dion’s motivation for pushing himself beyond reasonable limits can be traced back to his childhood. The memoir flows like a novel and is full of action, conflict, grounded characters and poignant moments.
Meeting Gobi is serendipitous, and Dion is determined she will be his. The sacrifices he makes, the people he meets and the different culture he learns to live with making this an enthralling read. Gobi’s story is touching, and many times your heart is in your mouth as you wonder if she will ever make it to the UK and life with Dion.
The insight into 21st-Century China is fascinating. The real-life action is heartstopping and the bond between man and dog rewarding. So familiar to everyone who shares their life with a doggy friend. Whether or not, China, dogs and running are part of your life you will enjoy this well-paced, action-packed, original story, I did.
I received a copy of this book from Harper Collins Non-Fiction via NetGalley in return for an honest review.