Around England with a Dog


The story of two seasoned and intrepid Canadian travellers, Lesley and Linda Choyce, who embark on a new adventure with their West Highland terrier, Kelty.

Lesley Choyce is a 70-year-old year-round North Atlantic surfer, the godfather of transcendental wood-splitting, and the award-winning author of over 100 books. His wife, Linda, a former high school principal who has fearlessly commandeered knives from teenage malcontents, usually guides her husband away from quixotic quests, but she is fully on board for this one. As for Kelty, the couple’s West Highland terrier, he’s always ready to give up on chewing shoes and chasing pheasants for something more exciting.

For years, Lesley has been fascinated and perplexed by the tumultuous history of England, the inexplicable customs of the English, and the many paradoxes of the people, but also their indomitable spirit. If he were to continue to grow intellectually and spiritually, he was certain that the answers to the meaning of life were to be found in England. As their itinerary expands, Lesley and Linda will cross borders into Wales and Scotland as well.

Join the Choyces as they hurtle around the U.K. in search of history (all kinds), good food (mostly Indian), quirky destinations (the smaller and weirder the better), and places for the dog to pee. All while waiting for the imminent arrival of new grandchildren back home in Canada. Ever wondered what a Nova Scotian surfer/wood-splitter/Renaissance man/Westie owner thinks of the U.K.? Now you can find out.


“Travel tales of wagging tails, Around England With a Dog is warm, witty, wise and wonderful. Choyce is a masterful storyteller.” —Stephen Patrick Clare, editor of Celtic Life International Magazine

“Have dog, will travel! Nova Scotia’s intrepid author/surfer/traveller Lesley Choyce provides the full scoop, from the ground up, on Britain’s famous and not-so-famous hotspots on and off the beaten path. With its signature mix of gravitas and laugh-out-loud humour, this travelogue/memoir is choice Choyce – this much-loved writer at his disarmingly hilarious and heartfelt best. Roll over, Bill Bryson!” —Carol Bruneau, award-winning author of five novels and three story collections as well as essays, reviews and articles in newspapers, journals and anthologies nationwide

“‘Voyage and return’ is our oldest story form, as in The Epic of Gilgamesh, Homer’s Odyssey, and The Rime of the Ancient Mariner. But let’s be honest here: not one of those stories is particularly funny. But Lesley Choyce’s Around England with a Dog is funny and interesting and epic (well, epic in its own way). It’s a wry ‘voyage and return’ story rich with captivating places, compelling characters and curious history, all in the company of a mildly neurotic, 11-inch-tall West Highland terrier of questionable continence. You can only imagine what happened. Better yet, don’t imagine it. Read it. I promise you’ll find Around England with a Dog a thoughtful and entertaining tale (and tail).” —Steven Laffoley, author of Unfiltered: An Irreverent History of Beer in Nova Scotia

“A thoroughly enjoyable armchair escape by a skilled and prolific author, recounting excursions through enticing parts of the world with his spouse and their furry travel companion.” —Bill Arnott, bestselling author of the Gone Viking travel saga and A Season on Vancouver Island