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Stay: A Novel [Kindle Edition]

Allie Larkin
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (153 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $15.00
Kindle Price: $9.99
You Save: $5.01 (33%)
Sold by: Penguin Group (USA) LLC

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Book Description

Girl meets dog in this effervescent "feel-good debut" (People) by the author of Why Can't I Be You

Savannah "Van" Leone has been in love with Peter Clarke since their first day of college. Six years later, Peter is marrying Van's best friend, Janie. Loyal to a fault, Van dons her pumpkin-orange, maid-of- honor gown and stands up for the couple, struggling to hide her true feelings even when she couldn't be more conspicuous. After the wedding, nursing her broken heart with a Rin Tin Tin marathon plus a vodka chaser, Van accidentally orders a German Shepherd puppy over the Internet. When "Joe" turns out to be a hundred-pound beast who only responds to commands in Slovak, Van is at the end of her rope-until she realizes that sometimes life needs to get more complicated before it can get better.

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Larkin debuts with a funny and touching story about love, loss, and dog ownership. Twenty-something Van Leone, fresh from serving as maid of honor at the wedding of her childhood best friend and the man Van's been in love with since college, impulsively buys a German shepherd puppy on the Internet while drowning her sorrows in vodka and a late-night Rin Tin Tin marathon. Van's surprised to discover, however, that the little ball of fuzz she's expecting is an enormous Slovakian police dog that she names Joe. The expected furniture-destroying and neighbor-terrifying antics ensue, but Joe quickly becomes Van's family, chief confidant, and romantic catalyst. The fresh start Van had envisioned turns out to be more complicated than she'd hoped—particularly after the newlyweds return from their honeymoon—but Joe nudges her ever forward. Though the support cast could be trimmed and the love interest lacks satisfying depth, Van's conflicts feel authentic, and her emotional frankness is refreshing. Cute story, nicely told. (June)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


"Stay has everything ... humor, heart-and, endearingly, buckets of dog slobber."
(-Miami Herald)

"Gilmore Girls meets Marley & Me in this funny and compelling debut."
(-Library Journal)

Product Details

  • File Size: 447 KB
  • Print Length: 323 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0452297125
  • Publisher: Plume; Reprint edition (June 10, 2010)
  • Sold by: Penguin Group (USA) LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003NX7NII
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #131,911 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
54 of 58 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Sweet and Furry Love Story!! May 1, 2010
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Being a dog lover, this book immediately caught my attention....although one doesn't need to be a dog lover to enjoy this book, an appreciation for the canine species would certainly help. That being said, here are my thoughts on this book:

I loved it!! Savannah Leone stands by as the maid of honor in her best friends wedding, while her best friend weds the man that Savannah has been secretely pining for for the past 7 years. While she desperately tries to be happy for both of them, this proves to be a difficult task and she drowns her sorrows in vodka and Kool-Aid. One night while watching a Rin Tin Tin marathon and being plastered out of her mind, she goes online and orders a German Shepherd puppy from Slovakia.

Enter said puppy.

The tiny little ball of fur that Savannah ("Van") is expecting turns out to be a hip-high, seemingly mutant version of some sort of wolf hybrid. "Enormous" doesn't quite adequately describe the size of this "puppy". Van is stunned, to say the least, and quickly learns that not only does this dog only understand commands in Slovakian (for wihich the sellers have considerately supplied a list of these commands for the new buyer), but the dog also has been trained to "search the building" and "find narcotics". Ha! Ha! Ha!

The first half of the book is filled with humor as Van tries to adjust to life with a dog (she's never owned a dog in her life) and I found myself frequently laughing out loud as Van rearranges her life to accomodate this overgrown ball of fur. Anybody who has ever owned a dog will surely understand how easy it is to lose all sense of reality when trying welcoming a fluffy, four-legged creature into one's life.
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Book for dog lovers! May 8, 2010
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I think in all honesty, this book deserved a more average rating of 3 but I was inclined to go with a 4 out of 5 because I enjoyed meeting Joe and watching a bond grow between Van and Joe, her new "puppy."

Van has been in love with her best friend, Peter, since college. Unfortunately, he has been in love with her best friend, Janie, and now, they have just married. It's a standard chick lit type storyline basically. Van does the wallowing thing and in that wallowing, amidst some alcohol and Rin Tin Tin, she decides to order a German Shepard puppy off the internet. And oh yeah, this puppy is coming from Slovakia. $6,000 later, Van is in for a shock because her puppy is definitely not a cute ball of fur. He is a growing German Shepard who obeys Slovakian commands.

Let the hijinks begin! Joe, as he is christened, becomes the cause for many changes in Van's life, including meeting a new guy. But he is also the best friend she has, her only family. Then of course, Peter comes back into her life. The story then falls into some well known plot points making it fairly average in the will she or won't she, what will she really do, type of chick lit style.

What I liked about this story was the relationship between Van and Joe, even though he is a dog. I enjoyed Marley & Me and well, most dog stories so really, if you don't like dogs, you are not going to like this story. However, I did feel like he helped Van move forward a bit. It was kind of a one step forward, two steps back, but she was trying to change, trying to find her own path in life rather than wishing she was Peter's Janie. And frankly, I really liked how rude Janie was. She wasn't afraid of mincing words.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars enjoyable and funny May 9, 2010
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
It would be very simple and convenient to classify Stay: A Novel into the chick-lit genre. It would also be quite easy to dismiss this book as just one more book about a twenty-something woman struggling to find "the one." It'd be easier still to classify this book as that book about the dog who helps a woman find true love.

The fact of the matter is that "Stay" is a book that embodies all three of those characteristics; it's a book that prominently features a dog on its cover and details the circumstances surrounding a woman's acquisition of a dog and her subsequent understanding of who she is as a person.

It would be simple to dismiss this book as being a lesser book because of the aforementioned characteristics. However, that would be a mistake. Allie Larkin manages to embrace those characteristics and, by incorporating them into her first novel, it's as if the author is saying that she knows that this book is meant to entertain. Larkin doesn't want you to dismiss her, yet, she doesn't want to be taken too seriously either.

The story of a woman who accidentally purchases a dog from Slovakia over the Internet and then falls in love with her puppy's veterinarian isn't going to win a Pulitzer Prize, but it's not meant to either. Larkin's debut novel is a quick read, with humor-filled passages. "Stay" belongs on your bookshelf with those rare chick-lit books that you treasure, right next to the other rom-com books that don't take themselves seriously but provide you with hours of pleasurable reading. "Stay" can hold its own on the shelf right next to Helen Fielding's "Bridget Jones" novels and it wouldn't be entirely out of place there.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome! Totally awesome!
While I enjoy reading, not every book grabs me emotionally and makes me go back and reread parts of it. This book did. It's sweet, funny, romantic. I loved every bit of it. Read more
Published 3 days ago by bunnygirl
5.0 out of 5 stars FANTASTIC!
I LOVED this book. It reminded me of the first time I read Jennifer Weiner (Goodnight Nobody, still one of my favorites) PLUS it had a dog. How can you possibly beat that? Read more
Published 7 days ago by Laura K
2.0 out of 5 stars Wanted to like this book...
But it was really boring, cheesy, and predictable. It had the foundation to be acute story, but the characters lacked depth. Read more
Published 12 days ago by Jay
5.0 out of 5 stars love, love, love this book. one of my absolute favorites!!!! you won't...
this book has everything I love. I am a huge dog lover and this book spoke to me on so many levels. There comes a time in every woman's life where she tries of playing second... Read more
Published 14 days ago by ViviBee
4.0 out of 5 stars Cute quirky contemporary romance...perhaps leaning towards chick lit.
After Peter, the guy she has loved for years, marries her best friend, Van goes on a bender drinking a lot of vodka and watching re-runs of Rin Tin Tin. Read more
Published 19 days ago by Ian
3.0 out of 5 stars A dog is the catalyst for moving on in life
Savannah (aka, Van) is the maid of honor at her friend Janie's wedding. They have known each other since they were children, as Van's mother was the housekeeper for Janie's family. Read more
Published 20 days ago by Michelle Boytim
5.0 out of 5 stars great book!
The story was great. I loved the dog and the characters. The Rochester references and Wegmans made it feel like I could run into these people locally :)
Published 25 days ago by rld27
5.0 out of 5 stars Review
Very well written and fun to read. Recommended by a friend who purchased the book. I am looking forward to more good reads from this author. Read more
Published 26 days ago by R A Landry
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read.
Made me laugh and made me cry. What an emotional rollercoaster. I especially liked Joe the dog and Louis. An enjoyable read.
Published 1 month ago by Loretta
5.0 out of 5 stars I loved it!!
This is not my usual reading fare. I couldn't sleep so decided to read a couple pages, I finished at 8:00 a.m. I could not put it down. I cried and I laughed, more than once. Read more
Published 1 month ago by S. Bible
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More About the Author

Allie Larkin is the internationally bestselling author of the novel Stay (2010), and Why Can't I Be You (2013). She has never ordered a dog off the internet or assumed a new identity to attend a high school reunion.

Allie lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband, Jeremy, and their German Shepherd, Stella.

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