Island Dogs


THE BOOK:  “Island Dogs.”


THE AUTHOR:  B.M. Simpson.

THE EDITOR: Bob Boardman.

THE PUBLISHER: Amazon Kindle.

SUMMARY: Island Dogs is a novel for the mixed and muddled masses. It is a story about five beleaguered souls who continue to hope for a better life after watching most of their dreams slip away. To try and pick up the pieces of their shattered lives, they take refuge in the Caribbean. While trudging on and dealing with the troubles of life, they become a rum soaked version of the Island of Misfit Toys. Before the islands, they were the educated and dimwits. They were rich and poor. And they were socially connected and social outcasts. After landing in Anguilla, they become each other’s support group and best friends. And, for better or worse, they become the Island Dogs.

THE BACK STORY: I’ve been writing one thing or another since my early twenties, (which would be the early 1980’s). To skip a lot of my life story, I moved to Anguilla for work in 2006. In some ways the islands are like every other place in the world. What I mean by this is people are people no matter where you are. Some work hard, some don’t. Some party hard, some don’t. Some are extremely religious, some are not. Some are quite reserved and proper and some are more free spirited. And some grow and improve with age while others just never change their colors. The population of Anguilla is a lot smaller than the US, but there is still diversity, just in smaller numbers. With all that said, the islands are unique, colorful and in my heart and mind, a fantastical place. After arriving in Anguilla it did not take long for me to realize I was going to write something about the Caribbean. I didn’t know if it would be short stories or song lyrics or as it turned out to be, a novel. Almost everyone who knew I was a writer in the islands told me, “Man, you gotta write a book about the Caribbean.” I think most of them thought I would write true stories about people and experiences that touched me in one way or another. But the truth is, I like writing fiction more than writing factual. I was always pretty sure that when I wrote something, it would be a made up story, not that I don’t have plenty of great experiences I could write about. I worked hard on a construction project in Anguilla and most of us played pretty hard, too. Even though the characters and most of the places in Island Dogs are fictitious, many of them are not too far off from reality. The personalities, the scenery, the food, the drink and the atmosphere in the book are true to form in most ways. Does everyone who goes to the islands party like the Island Dogs? Of course not. I know people who go to the islands for Bible Retreats or to volunteer for agencies like the Peace Corps, but that’s not who this story is about. There are also tourists who stay in world-class resorts and dine in the high-end restaurants, never leaving the comforts of their tourist center. But the book is not about them either. WHY THIS TITLE: It just seemed to fit.

WHY SOMEONE WOULD WANT TO READ IT: The starting point is a fantasy common to many of us — leave the unfulfilling job, the bills, the neighbors, the lawn that needs cutting and flee to the Caribbean, where life is supposedly like a year-around cruise. Of course, this quintet of likable ex-pats soon learn that hanging out in Da Limin Hut won’t solve their problems, just deaden them. But Simpson has breathed life and pathos into his characters as well as humor, and you will probably wind up choosing a favorite. Then pull up a barstool and enjoy the ride.

REVIEW COMMENTS: This book was extraordinary! I fell in love with the characters, the beautiful island, and every chapter in this book. The writer did a remarkable job painting a beautiful picture in my head… I felt what the characters felt, I placed myself on the beautiful island of Anguilla, and I was so wrapped up in the book that I laughed, I cried, and I was truly sad when it was over. If there was a second book I would already be halfway through it, and I just finished Island Dogs yesterday. I have never fell in love with people in a story, or their experiences as much as i did with this book. I thought it would be a nice beach read, but it was so much more than that. B.M. Simpson did a beautiful job making these characters so relatable, and making each Island Dog different. I think every person who reads this novel will have a favorite person, because you truly feel like you are there, in the moment- sipping on rum and experiencing the ups and downs and hilarious moments that life throws at you. I love it and can officially say I have a favorite book! — Erica Michele.

This book took me by surprise. Hiaasen-esque character development brings Island Dog’s personalities to life. The sometimes amusing, often disastrous search for meaning in their lives drives the principals to a wonderfully entertaining confluence. Their path to enlightenment has more twists and turns than a volcanic mountain highway. A delightfully entertaining read, I highly recommend it. — Richard W. Carr.

If you are an avid reader, let me just say this is an easy read, at no point did I want to put this book down. It has a great cast of characters that you will get to know each one individually. I hope to read more about their Island Life..(hint to the Author) Great Job and Very Well Done!!! — Marilyn Rearick. I found Island Dogs to be an immensely entertaining read! The author hooks you from the start and reels you in to the point you can almost taste the rum punch and feel island breezes on your skin! I was sorry when it ended…hoping to read more from this talented author! — Teresa Travitzky.

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AUTHOR PROFILE: Brian Simpson was born and raised in rural Maine.  He joined the Air Force at the age of 18 and lived and moved across the U.S. and Europe. After leaving the military, he spent years living and working in the Caribbean. On the islands of Anguilla, St. Kitts and Grand Cayman, he discovered a passion for island life and formed friendships second to none.  After 30 years of writing poems, songs and short stories, he wrote his first full-length novel, Island Dogs. Today, Simpson and his wife live in Florida. They enjoy periodic trips back to the Caribbean where they visit friends, share island stories, and soak up the peaceful sun, sea, vibe and soothing breezes of the islands.  And of course, a good rum punch made perfect by a local. Brian is now hard at work on a second novel.  Watch for details coming soon.

AUTHOR COMMENTS: “Everybody needs to escape to an island now and then. Find your island.”


LOCAL OUTLETS: Haslam Book Store, 2025 Central Avenue, St. Petersburg, FLA 33713.

WHERE ELSE TO BUY IT: ebooks from Amazon: ebooks for Nook: In Paperback: .

PRICE: $14.99 & $7.99 on Amazon & Kobo.



Published by


Recently retired after 35 years with the News & Advance newspaper in Lynchburg, VA, now re-inventing myself as a novelist/nonfiction writer and writing coach in Lake George, NY.

8 thoughts on “Island Dogs”

  1. With kids and grand kids in Hawaii, I can relate to the island experience described here. Sounds like a super summer read and I will definitely check it out!


    1. Island Dogs is not War and Peace and is not a story that will change the world or solve the social problems of humanity, but then again, there aren’t many books that fall into those categories. It is a story about people who are far from perfect and who make a lot of mistakes in life. In other words, in one way or another, it’s about most of us.

      I hope you enjoy.

      B.M. Simpson


    1. Thanks for checking out Island Dogs. It was a book that was a blast to write and even more fun to do the research. I love the Caribbean and I love imperfect people and the two of them seem to go hand in hand.

      I hope you enjoy the story.

      B.M. Simpson


  2. Deirdre, I spent about seven years in the Caribbean and there are not too many moments I would change. It was a defining and discovering period of my life, perhaps like no other. I often sign my book with, “Find your island.” Everyone needs to find an island now and then. It’s just what we need to do.

    Thanks for the congrats and I hope, if you read Island Dogs, you enjoy it.

    B.M. Simpson


  3. Someone who just finished reading Island Dogs just asked me, “Do you think the islands are a metaphor?” The answer, of course is, do you – the reader – think the islands are a metaphor.


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