Friday, March 23, 2018

Dear Abby - Favorite Dog Movies: Asta from The Thin Man

Dear Friends,

Today we are going far back in dog movie history to talk about Asta the Wirehair Fox Terrier from The Thin Man movies of the 1930's. 

The Thin Man was a series of detective comedies starring William Powell and Myrna Loy as Nick and Nora Charles.  They lived with their dog Asta.  These movies were based upon The Thin Man by Dashiell Hammett.  (My Momma asked me to add that the book is a great read!)

Asta was portrayed by Skippy the dog (also known as Asta) for the first two movies, The Thin Man (1934) and After The Thin Man (1936).   There were several later Thin Man movies that starred other dogs (who were still billed as Asta).   These movies were: Another Thin Man, Shadow of the Thin Man, The Thin Man Goes Home, Song of the Thin Man, and the 1950's TV series The Thin Man.

The popularity of Asta made Wirehair Fox Terriers a popular dog breed in the 1930's!

Skippy, who portrayed Asta, was born in 1931 or 1932 and worked in movies until 1941.  Skippy was owned and trained by Henry and Gale Henry East.  He had a reputation as being one of the smartest and most responsive dog actors in classic Hollywood.

Asta with owner Henry East
Skippy later appeared in The Awful Truth, Bringing Up Baby, and Topper Takes a Trip.

Here is a very short (and very cute!) video of Asta in After the Thin Man.

Have you seen any of The Thin Man movies?  I would love to hear from you in the comments!


Abby xoxoxo

Book Review - The Heart Between Us by Lindsay Harrel

Book Synopsis
Megan Jacobs always wished for a different heart. Her entire childhood was spent in and out of hospitals, sitting on the sidelines while her twin sister Crystal played all the sports, got all the guys, and had all the fun. But even a heart transplant three years ago wasn’t enough to propel Megan’s life forward. She’s still working as a library aide and living with her parents in her small Minnesota hometown, dreaming of the adventure she plans to take “once she’s well enough.” Meanwhile, her sister is a successful architect with a handsome husband and the perfect life—or so Megan thinks.

When her heart donor’s parents give Megan their teenage daughter’s journal—complete with an unfulfilled bucket list—Megan connects with the girl she meets between the pages and is inspired to venture out and check off each item. Caleb—a friend from her years in and out of the hospital—reenters her life and pushes her to find the courage to take the leap and begin her journey. She’s thrown for a loop when Crystal offers to join her for reasons of her own, but she welcomes the company and the opportunity to mend their tenuous relationship.

As Megan and Crystal check items off the bucket list, Megan fights the fears that have been instilled in her after a lifetime of illness. She must choose between safety and adventure and learn to embrace the heart she’s been given so that she can finally share it with the people she loves most


Purchase Links

Amazon | Books-A-Million | Barnes & Noble | iBooks

My Review
The Heart Between Us tells the story of two sisters.  Megan had heart troubles throughout her childhood.  Eventually she was the recipient of a heart transplant.  She has learned to live cautiously because of her years of illness, in and out of hospitals.   Megan's twin sister, Crystal, had a happy, active childhood and as an adult she seems to have it all - handsome husband and career as an architect.  Then Megan meets her heart donor's family and her life changes.  They loan her their daughter Amanda's journal and Megan reads the young girl's bucket list.  She determines to follow the bucket list in order to fulfill Amanda's dreams.  Crystal surprisingly joins her on this quest, and in the process, they fulfill a few dreams of their own.

The Heart Between Us is such a lovely and uplifting novel.  It is told in alternating chapters about Megan and Crystal.  I found Crystal harder to warm up to at first because she seemed so perfect -- but I soon learned that was an illusion.  These were characters I cared about and enjoyed reading about.  I also loved Caleb, Megan's friend who has gone through a similar heart journey.  The romantic sparks between Megan and Caleb were fun to read!

I am a good armchair traveler but don't actually enjoy adventure travel myself.  However, I loved reading the travel scenes in this novel!   I especially loved the scenes in London and Paris.

This is a Christian novel and the message of faith is strong.  There is a wonderful message about trusting God, listening to his will, and being willing to take chances.

I loved the skillful way Lindsay Harrel drew these very different characters and moved their storyline along.  I found this a quick and compelling read.  (I could not put it down!)  It is well written and handles potentially heavy topics of health and life and death in a deft and positive manner.

I recommend The Heart Between Us for fans of women's fiction, Christian fiction, or anyone who is looking for an uplifting novel about changing your life.  I loved it!

Author Bio
Lindsay Harrel is a lifelong book nerd who lives in Arizona with her young family and two golden retrievers in serious need of training. She’s held a variety of writing and editing jobs over the years, and now juggles stay-at-home mommyhood with writing novels. When she’s not writing or chasing after her children, Lindsay enjoys making a fool of herself at Zumba, curling up with anything by Jane Austen, and savoring sour candy one piece at a time. Connect with her at

Connect with Lindsay

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I received a copy of this book from TLC Book Tours.