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Found Hound to Get Book Deal?

Rocco's journey: Soon to be a major motion picture?Photo: istockphoto

We were as heart-warmed as anyone by this morning's story in the Post about Rocco, the beagle who was returned to a Queens family after being reported missing five years ago. Last week Rocco turned up in Georgia, of all places. The shelter where he was dropped off identified him by the microchip implanted in his skin, and now he's back in the arms of 11-year-old Natalie Villacis, the adorable Queens girl who had never stopped loving him. "Every night I would wish, 'Please Rocco, come home,'" she told the Post, and now that wish has come true." We admit it, we teared. But then we got to a passage that made our veins run cold.

Embracing Rocco, Natalie asked her mother, "Where do you think he has been all this time?"
"I don't know," her mother told her. "But if he could tell us, I'm sure he has more than enough material for a novel."

Oh no. Oh please no. Please publishing industry: We know what you're thinking. You're so easy these days — something succeeds and you just want to make it over and over again. Rocco's Journey: The Extraordinary Story of an Extraordinary Beagle, or some such. Red jacket. Rocco's head cocked just so. Christmas release. Appearance of quotable little girl on Oprah leads to massive hardcover sales leads to issuing of an illustrated version leads to a major motion picture, a Homeward Bound for the new, microchip-implanted generation. Abigail Breslin stars, or maybe she's too old? Oh God, make it stop. This is totally going to happen, isn't it?

LOST & HOUND IN QNS. [NYP]

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