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Chez Stinky (An Alpine Grove Romantic Comedy Book 1) [Kindle Edition]

Susan C. Daffron
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (209 customer reviews)

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Burning Down George Orwell's House
Burning Down George Orwell's House
Pulitzer Prize and PEN/Faulkner Award finalist Robert Stone describes Burning Down George Orwell's House as a "… most enjoyable, a witty, original turn … one part black comedy and one part a meditation on modern life. It is well-written and truly original." Learn more about the author, Andrew Ervin

Book Description

Kat Stevens is a slightly insecure, mostly bored technical writer who likes her cat a lot more than her boss. She hasn't laid eyes on her great aunt Abigail since she was eight, so she's stumped when she inherits Abigail's house in the small hamlet of Alpine Grove.Kat's uncomplicated life gets decidedly less so when she discovers the inheritance comes with some hairy conditions: four dogs and five cats that her aunt wanted her to love as her own. Of course, the house smells like a barn--with a touch of antique skunk--and, naturally, has serious roof issues. And that's before the three-legged cat gets stuck in the wall and the shower goes kablooey.

When Kat meets Joel, an unemployed techie type with no love lost for his sister, Kat looks past his obvious flaws, given his timely and desirable skill set: a talent for fixing things (and his own tools). Despite out-of-control dogs, cat fights, dust dinosaurs, massive spiders and an old grizzled hippie passed out in the yard, Kat discovers the tranquility of the forests of Alpine Grove starting to seep into her soul. And why she can't she stop thinking about Joel?

Note: Chez Stinky is a full-length novel (300 pages/80,000 words) that is Book #1 of the Alpine Grove Romantic Comedies. It's a feel-good novel that appeals to people who enjoy a little light romance and quirky animal stories.

Editorial Reviews


"This book will have you laughing as you can visualize what the animals are doing. The animals are great in this book, they have their own personality, and I love that!"
     ~ Kelly, Reading in Black and White

"If you're a fan of chick lit or animals, two things that I personally love, then check this one out! I'd highly recommend it!"
    ~ Stephanie, Steph the Bookworm

"I stayed up well past my bedtime as I was truly intrigued by the characters. The charming yet descriptive use of words entangled me in their world."
   ~ Jayda, Two Children and a Migraine

"I love animals, so I really enjoyed this book.  I also like the characters in this story.  There was a little bit of drama and intrigue that made the book interesting."
   ~ Melina, Melina's Book Blog

"If you are an animal lover, a romantic, a techie, a tree hugger, or someone who just enjoys a book that helps you to escape the daily grind, then pick up a copy of Chez Stinky, you won't be disappointed.
     ~ Caren, Dakota's Den

From the Author

Chez Stinky is the first book in my series of Alpine Grove romantic comedies. The readers who seem to enjoy my books the most are women who have a sense of humor, like animals, and prefer sex scenes that just fade to black (not 50 shades of anything). For example, you'll see in the reviews that people tend say things like, it's a good book for lovers of "light reads, chick lit, light romance and animal stories..." Because Chez Stinky was my first novel, when it came out, I got questions about why I made the choices I did and how much of it is real. Here are a few FAQs for those of you here on Amazon who might be wondering:

More Alpine Grove?
Many people have asked about upcoming books. The fifth Alpine Grove novel, Bark to the Future, is available now on Amazon and I'm working on the sixth book. You can always find out the latest on my web site 
Although each book is a stand-alone story, because Alpine Grove is a small town, many characters tend to reappear, so I think it's more fun if you read them in order. The correct reading order is:
1.     Chez Stinky
2.     Fuzzy Logic
3.     The Art of Wag
4.     Snow Furries
5.     Bark to the Future

Why 1995?
Chez Stinky is set in 1995. At the risk of divulging how old I really am, the easiest answer to the question, "why 1995" is because in 1995, I was about the same age as the main character, Kat. The way you feel and behave when you are in your twenties is not the same as when you are {ahem} older. I may not be wiser, but I do make different choices now. As I wrote, I could imagine where I was and how I felt during that time period. Also several plot points depend on the fact that cell phones and the Internet weren't as widely available as they are now.

A technical writer?
Kat is a tech writer and yes, I was a technical writer too when I was in my 20s. And sadly, I really did have a conversation about ginkgo with my boss. It was not one of the high points of my writing career.

The inspiration for Chez Stinky (the house)
The house in the story is loosely based on my house in Idaho when I first moved into it. And yes, the stairs really were covered with blue shag carpet because the decaying plywood was really slippery.

The dogs of Chez Stinky
For 12 years, I lived with four dogs. The "gang of four" lived to ripe old ages (12 - 15 years old), and they are still missed greatly. Tessa is based on my dog Tika who was tested for "hyperkinesis" otherwise known as doggie ADHD. Over time, Tika turned out to be a wonderful dog, but the early years were rough. Tessa's leash arrangement in the story is also based on a real thing. (I thought of using a backpack to slow down Tika long, long before dog trainers recommended it on TV.)

Small town life
Anyone who has lived in a small town has probably experienced the glacial speed of the post office. That is just as true in the town where I live in Idaho as it is in Alpine Grove. If you want to meet people, go to the PO.

If you have other questions about the book, please ask. I love hearing from readers!

Product Details

  • File Size: 687 KB
  • Print Length: 300 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Magic Fur Press (September 23, 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00E40H4JC
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,245 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Chez Stinky July 6, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition
Technical writer Kat Stevens' quiet and slightly boring life is about to get a lot more complicated ...

In Chez Stinky, the debut novel and first book in the Alpine Grove Romantic Comedy series, author Susan C. Daffron weaves a lighthearted and entertaining story that is sure to tickle the reader's funny bone.

The story follows the trials and tribulations of Kat Stevens when her ordinary life takes a strange turn in direction when she inherits her late Great Aunt Abigail's decrepit house in the small town of Alpine Grove, and a motley crew of four dogs and five cats. But there are stipulations to the inheritance: she has to move permanently into the house and she has to keep all the animals. When Kat receives word that her apartment complex has been sold, and the new owners are converting the apartment units into condominiums, she quits her job and moves to Alpine Grove determined to make Chez Stinky her new home. With a ranshackle house full of animals; a sexy unemployed Aeronautic engineer and self-proclaimed nerdy techie neighbor named Joel Ross; and a variety of dramatic and comedic roadblocks in her way to receiving her inheritance, can Kat restart her life in Alpine Grove?

Chez Stinky was such a fun read, the author does a wonderful job of weaving an entertaining tale that has a good mixture of comedy, drama, mystery and romance. The reader is easily drawn into the story as they follow the humorous trials and tribulations that Kat encounters in Alpine Grove. The motley crew of lovable animals provide a touch of added comedy to the story with their individual personalities and crazy antics, the reader will easily find themselves laughing out loud as they turn the pages.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Chez Stinky was a good debut novel August 22, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
While the writing isn't stellar, the characters were engaging and likable and the plot kept my interest well. I have hopes that the author will get more comfortable and develop a better style for fiction writing -- in this book her extensive non-fiction background is holding her back a little.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Little bit of everything June 25, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition
A little mystery, humor, and great characters...that's what made Chez Stinky an intriguing read for me. It's a tad on the slow side at first, but it definitely picked up. Kat is a technical writer who's about to face some changes in life. The story made me laugh, and pulled on my heartstrings. There's so many feel good moments, but has it's emotional parts as well. It's a great read to sit on the porch for an afternoon and cozy up to. I'll be looking for more from this author in the future, I really enjoyed her writing style.
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I'm not really sure what to say about this book. SPOILER ALERT: First, it was unclear who the love interest was until about half way through the book. Second, the lead character's reactions to some pretty extreme circumstances is a bit...unrealistically underwhelming? Her boss tells her she needs to dress sexier and while she does quit there's not real follow up. Then her dog may have been shot at and that doesn't seem to garner too much of a reaction from her. Last, at the end, when she finds out about her family background and that her mother isn't actually her mother, she seems to take that a little too much in stride as well. I did get through the whole book but I just don't get this book's all.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An enjoyable read April 4, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition
This was an easy, enjoyable rather charming read. The animals are characters in their own right, not just there as scenery. Looking forward to reading more about the likeable characters and their exploits.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
By Angela
Format:Kindle Edition
I liked this book very much! I chose to give Susan five stars for a well-written and very interesting book!
I found it very hard to just leave it when I had to ,to do errands and chores one has to do daily, you probably know what that's like right readers and author? I recommend this book for those who love reading about pets in a story. This book has mention about cats and dogs. With a mention about how this young gal gets involved with the caring of all these pets and about a romance too, I think! Great job Susan! By Angela
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Chez Stinky June 25, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition
Susan C Daffron is now on tour with CLP Blog Tours and Chez Stinky
I’m a huge animal lover (dogs in particular) so I knew reading this blurb that I would have a fun time with this story. And I was right! The book was easy to get immersed in, and the characters of Chez Stinky are full of personality and so fun to read about. I thought the story was light-hearted, yet there were several serious moments involved, and I enjoyed the duality that was delivered. I found myself making excuses for why I just had to keep reading. I’m very much looking forward to more from this cast of characters!
4.5 stars
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars good story July 22, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This story was very drawn out. Kat inherits a house from her great aunt whom she has not seen in years. When she shows up she is told that she can have the house and the money only if she keeps all of her great aunts animals. In the process, kat finds out that the house is falling apart and her career is dead and her old apartment in the city was sold and she has to move. So her life is flipped upside down. Then the guy helping her fix the house flakes on her and she asks for a favor from Cindy (dog sitter) if her brother Joel will help her. Slowly they get involved.
The story takes a while to get into it. But I am looking forward to book 2. There is love in the book but don't expect details on love scenes or peoples bodies.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Not so stinky
This was a sweet little love story. I enjoyed the animals and how they were all characters in the story. Will look for the next book in the series.
Published 1 day ago by Julie Weiss-mackenzie
3.0 out of 5 stars Cute, fun and loaded with animals.
Well it had it's fun and has intrigue but not enough to make me buy the next! Just to much for the plot line.
Published 3 days ago by Carole
3.0 out of 5 stars A Good Summer Read… if you’re feeling lazy!
This light-hearted, humor infused book would be a perfect pick to read on an easy summer vacation. The story and characters do not require intense attention or thought from a... Read more
Published 4 days ago by BP
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved It!
I loved this book. Maybe it is a little predictable but it is good! I couldn't put it down.
Published 6 days ago by SherryL
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun Read
I really liked this book. It's a light, fun, romance with a little bit of mystery thrown in for an unexpected twist. Read more
Published 8 days ago by S. Stephens
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
A quick fun read.
Published 8 days ago by Joanna Krajewski
4.0 out of 5 stars Stinkarific!
Cute story. Fun read.
Published 9 days ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun.
A fun story. Hard to put down. The ending has an interesting twist. Will be looking for other stories frame this series.
Published 10 days ago by lorraine
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun and funny especially for dog lovers.
Cute story.
Published 10 days ago by Peg Hawkins
3.0 out of 5 stars New to Daffron
Chez Stinky was an easy read without being boring. I liked the first 3/4 better than the end. I thought the conclusion was rather rushed. Read more
Published 11 days ago by Linda Corrie
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More About the Author

Susan Daffron is the author of the Alpine Grove Romantic Comedies, a series of novels that feature residents of the small town of Alpine Grove and their various quirky dogs and cats. She is also an award-winning author of many nonfiction books, including several about pets and animal rescue. She lives in a small town in northern Idaho and shares her life with her husband, two dogs and a cat--the last three, all "rescues."

When she's not writing novels, Susan works as the president of Logical Expressions, Inc., a publishing company based in Sandpoint, Idaho. You can read more about her at her website

Susan was the president and founder of the National Association of Pet Rescue Professionals and also was the president of the Small Publishers Artists and Writers Network.

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