For Marley and Me lovers, you have to read Wesley the Owl: The Remarkable Love Story of an Owl and His Girl, by Stacey O’Brien. I rank this book right up their with John Grogran’s Marley and Me and Sy Montgomery’s The Good Good Pig.

Many people believe in having a totem animal, others just have special connections with animals. You may be a cat or dog lover, bird lover, pig lover and so forth. For others, it’s raptors and owls. The owl is reported to “represent the ability to carry the Light into the Darkness and brighten it” according to The Magic of Totem Animals. There are other beliefs about the power of owls and animals and there are many books and websites about totem animals, for example

However, Wesley the Owl isn’t exactly about totem animals, but it is about a human-to-owl connection that is extraordinary. The author, Stacey O’Brien, tells her story of Wesley, a Barn Owl who was held in the Owl Lab at Caltech because of incurable nerve damage. The author adopts and cares for Wesley from just about day 1 and Wesley lives into his teens. The story is wonderfully written, personal, and touching filled with the “Way of the Owl” with many life-lessons and observations. Owls are able to connect deeply and have many forms of communicating. They are also brilliant. O’Brien writes about Barn Owl facts with the expertise of a scientist and the understanding of an owl lover. She brings the facts down to earth in a way that non-scientists can understand and connect with. Both John Grogan and Sy Montgomery do this with their books as well. We know there are connnections with animals and some of us connect more than others. Some are very open to exploring the communication possibilities. Forms of telepathic communication are now being studied scientifically. O’Brien writes about her connection with Wesley and how Wesley became a life-long support partner, a caregiver, a companion, and a friend, not just a research subject. With laugh-out-loud moments to crying with full senstivity, this endearing book will touch the hearts of all readers. If you enjoyed Marley and Me or The Good Good Pig, you will certainly enjoy Wesley the Owl. This personal memoir demonstrates the power of learning through animals, the benefits of observing animal behavoir, and the powerful connections between animals to humans, animals to animals and humans to humans.

I am an admirer and observer of owls and am always thrilled when I see or hear an owl. I’ve had the keen pleasure of being surrounded by Great Horned Owls and Saw Whet Owls for the past several years. There’s an owl family who lives nearby and it’s a true delight to hear their hoots. Check out one of my favorite sources on owls, The Owl Pages, where you can learn more about owls, view images, and hear their shrieks and calls.

For more information on the book and the author, visit

Happy Reading and Owl Watching!