Revisit the story of Jesus through the eyes of man’s best friend—a special dog named Barley.
No one expected Barley to have an encounter with the Messiah. He was homeless, hungry, and struggling to survive in first century Jerusalem. Most surprisingly, he was a dog. But through Barley’s eyes, the story of a teacher from Galilee comes alive in a way we’ve never experienced before.
Barley’s story begins in the home of a compassionate woodcarving family who finds Barley as an abandoned, nearly-drowned pup. Tales of a special teacher from Galilee are reaching their tiny village, but when life suddenly changes again for Barley, he carries the lessons of forgiveness and love out of the woodcarver’s home and through the dangerous roads of Roman-occupied Judea.
On the outskirts of Jerusalem, Barley meets a homeless man and petty criminal named Samid. Together, Barley and his unlikely new master experience fresh struggles and new revelations. Soon Barley is swept up into the current of history, culminating in an unforgettable encounter with the truest master of all as he bears witness to the greatest story ever told.
“An incredibly inspiring and beautiful tale of a blessed journey of lessons learned as told through the voice of one man’s (and humanity’s) best friend, a loving dog named Barley. Ron Marasco transports both heart and mind heralding understanding and acceptance while weaving rich religious history within the pages of this unique adventure.” —Kristen Chenoweth, Tony and Emmy award–winning actress
“If you need a spirit-lift, a book of hope, a read that will urge you to believe that hope is worth the risk, you are holding the right book. Do yourself a favor—read and enjoy!” —Max Lucado, New York Times bestselling author of How Happiness Happens and Anxious for Nothing
“Some of the greatest life lessons about courage, loyalty, trust, and patience . . . I’ve learned from my dog. Read The Dog Who Was There and learn an amazing lesson about faith.” —Andy Andrews, New York Times bestselling author of The Noticer and The Traveler’s Gift
“The Dog Who Was There is a page-turning read that stops and opens the heart. Revealing profound truth with compelling grace, Ron Marasco offers a singular vision of the greatest story ever told.” —Beth Henley, Pulitzer Prize–winning playwright of Crimes of the Heart and The Jacksonian
“The Dog Who Was There is a wonderful, engaging book that adds a completely new perspective to the Passion story. Ron Marasco has created a character in Barley who will entertain and inspire readers. The retelling of Christ’s ministry through the human characters connects the reader in a unique was to the Gospel message, but it is Barley who will charm people of all ages.” —Kevin Baxter, EdD, Superintendent of Catholic Schools, Archdiocese of Los Angeles
- Inspirational standalone novel with biblical elements.
- Book length: 52,000 words.
- Includes discussion questions for book clubs.
Ron Marasco is a professor in the College of Communication and Fine Arts at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles. His first book, Notes to an Actor, was named by the American Library Association an Outstanding Book of 2008. His second book, About Grief, has been translated into multiple languages, and he is currently completing a book on Shakespeare’s sonnets. He has acted extensively on TV—from Lost to West Wing to Entourage to originating the role of Mr. Casper on Freaks and Geeks—and appeared opposite screen legend Kirk Douglas in the movie Illusion, for which he also wrote the screenplay. Most recently, he has played the recurring role of Judge Grove on Major Crimes. He has a BA from Fordham at Lincoln Center and an MA and Ph. D. from UCLA.
Chapter One - The Dog Who Was There