In so many ways, the character of Brown Dog reminds me of my family’s big, fuzzy mixed-breed dog, Lincoln. Both B. D. and Lincoln have hair of legendary unruliness. Both prefer cold weather. Both smell bad. Both take full advantage of proximity to members of the opposite sex. Neither frequents a dentist. Neither possesses any reason to care what day of the week it is. Both find deep pleasure in walking through the woods. Both are “inexperienced at thinking ahead.” Both approach a porterhouse steak with almost spiritual ecstasy. . .
Like Jennifer Egan’s “A Visit from the Goon Squad,” the pleasure in “Dirty Love” is in seeing the multiple narratives, like light towers at the corners of a field, shine their collective, overlapping glow onto the arena below.