First of all, this is another post-apocalyptic vision of the world. But, in the Dog Stars, the writing itself sets this book apart: the language is robust and experimental, with short machine gun like bursts and haiku-like prose. It is also dream-like and often beautiful. It is about loss and survival and hope and it scared me, made me cry, and sometimes gave me a laugh. There are no zombies, no vampires, no monsters...just us and we're terrifying enough. It's also a story about finding love in what seems a loveless world.It is about friendship between men when it seems all men must be feared. I love the part of the book that is about the bond between a man and a dog. There are some truly gruesome elements to the book and quite a bit of violence but there is also the beauty of the remaining natural world. It's streams, flowers, trees, and animals; all disappearing but in enough evidence to invoke nostalgia and appreciation. In the end this book is about what it really means to be a human in and of itself. Recommended to anyone but especially those who admire post-apocalyptic novels.