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About a Dog (A Bluff Point Romance) Mass Market Paperback – May 30, 2017
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Praise for About a Dog
“With a down-to-earth heroine, charming hero, and adorable puppy, About a Dog is romantic and entertaining. Jenn McKinlay writes sexy, funny romances that will leave you begging for more!”—Jill Shalvis, New York Times bestselling author
“Funny, charming, and heart-stoppingly romantic. With an irresistible hero and an utterly enchanting heroine, not to mention a dog you can’t help but fall in love with, About a Dog is the perfect mix of sweep-you-off-your-feet romance and humor. Jenn McKinlay is a rising star.”—Jaci Burton, New York Times bestselling author
“McKinlay delivers heartwarming humor at its finest.”—Lori Wilde, New York Times bestselling author
"With a perfect sense of comic timing and a gift for creating endearingly eccentric characters--including an adorable dog who threatens to steal every scene she is in--McKinlay delivers a sweetly satisfying contemporary romance that will have readers sitting up and begging for more."—Booklist (starred review)
“Clever writing, laugh-out-loud humor, and a sizzling romance. Mackenzie and Gavin’s reunion story will keep you turning the pages and laughing until your sides hurt. This one is a keeper.”—Delores Fossen, USA Today bestselling author
“About a Dog has friends, family, romance...and of course a dog! It’s funny and sexy! I loved it!”—Holly Jacobs, national bestselling author
“I loved About a Dog! Mac and her friends are funny and real. The romance is charming, as is the town of Bluff Point, Maine, with its quirky residents, both human and animal. Tulip is the cutest matchmaker and best scene-stealer ever!”—Nancy Warren, USA Today bestselling author
“Filled with warmth, fun and humanity.”—RT Book Reviews
Praise for the novels of Jenn McKinlay
“Full of warm and likable characters.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Full of fun and plot twists.”—Booklist
“What a great read!”—Library Journal
About the Author
Former librarian and New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Jenn McKinlay is the author of About a Dog, as well as the Library Lover’s Mysteries, the Cupcake Bakery Mysteries, and the Hat Shop Mysteries. Jenn lives in sunny Arizona in a house that is overrun with kids, pets, and her husband’s guitar
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I struggled with this book at first. Huge fan of Jenn McKinlay’s other series, but this one was a slow starter for me. I’m not a big fan of chick lit, and I knew going in there wouldn’t be much mystery, but I read this anyway because of my affection for her other work. At first I thought, yeah, yeah, yeah, been there, read that. Enter Tulip, a pit-bull mix, and things suddenly got a lot more interesting. I had to finish to find out what happens to the dog.
While this was initially slow for me, I have to say it’s well-written, with laugh-out-loud funny, snappy dialogue, interesting characters and a great setting. I was just kind of meh, until Tulip shows up. Then I had something to hold my interest. There are some detailed sex scenes, which I didn’t really care for, so just paged past – at this age, I don’t need to know what tab A is doing with slot B. Just knowing that they are getting busy is enough – makes the story more realistic. I did enjoyed watching Mac make peace with her past, and figuring out her relationship with Gavin, the veterinarian. The ending was very satisfying and, while this kind of book generally isn’t my cup of tea, I think I’m picking up book no. 2 at least. Got to find out what happens next with Mac, Gavin, and Tulip.
PS, do check out McKinlay’s other series (the Cupcake Bakery Mysteries, and A Library Lover’s Mysteries). Well worth reading.
Overall reaction to the story? About a Dog is one of those cute and fuzzy reads that you grab when you want something that will entertain but not get too heavy on the conflict. I enjoyed it more than I should but I do think the relationship needed more heat because it felt a little flat to me. With a set up like the best friend’s sibling trope, I expect more heat and definitely more tension between two characters like Gavin and Mac. However, even with the smoke but no fire romance, I still had a good time with this book. The characters are likable, and the situations while a bit unbelievable at times were entertaining and engaging.
Describe the hero in five words: Veterinarian. Sweet. Fun. Kind. Smart.
Did you like him? Yep.
Why? Some women love a man who loves babies. Me, not so much. It’s the men who love animals that get my engine going and a man like Gavin who works at saving them? Sign me up! This guy was a romantic at heart and he had no problem putting himself out there to show Mac that he was serious about wanting something real and lasting with her. How swoon worthy is that? Gavin knew that if he wanted a real chance with Mac that it was going to be an uphill battle but he totally went for it and I liked that about him, he didn’t shy away from the challenge that was convincing Mac that she could trust him.
Describe the heroine in five words: Smart. Loyal. Stubborn. Kind. Shy.
Did you like her? Yes.
Why? You can’t help but feel for Mac. She was left at the altar, had a booze filled one nighter with her best friend’s little brother, and now he wants a more permanent relationship with her. She’s in a tough spot but she manages to pull herself together to attend her best friend’s wedding. I liked her determination to make the people she cared about, in this case her best friend, happy by participating in numerous wedding centered activities. Not exactly fun for Mac at times but she wasn’t selfish enough to whine about it. She was inherently kind hearted but at the same time stubborn and afraid of what Gavin wanted and of course of putting herself out there again. I could understand that but come on girl, a veterinarian who isn’t afraid to put his heart on the line? She also needed to woman up towards the end, she kept quiet about some things that she really didn’t have a reason to keep quiet and almost lost everything.
Let’s talk about the romance: Okay so Mac and Gavin had a history, he had a massive crush on her when they were younger which turned into full blown love as an adult. Then when Mac got left at the altar she let her broken heart do the talking and slept with Gavin. He’s her best friend’s little brother AND he’s younger than her to boot so that makes him off limits in Mac’s mind for sure. But that doesn’t stop the mutual attraction. I loved that set up, the problem was that I felt there should have been more heat, more palpable tension between them than there actually was. That was the only mild disappointment in About a Dog. Other than that I enjoyed Mac and Gavin’s interactions with each other and their growth from friends to something more.
How about that supporting cast? Jenn McKinlay really knows how to bring in a memorable supporting cast! I fell in love with everyone from Gavin’s sister Emma, to friends Carly, Jillian Zach, and Sam, and especially little Tulip the puppy Mac rescues. All of them were warm, loving, and supportive even when they were dishing out reality checks. A lot of the laughs came from Mac’s aunts though; Sarah and Charlotte were a riot and a definite handful. I couldn’t get enough of them. They all brought a lot of heart to the story.
Click It or Skip It? Click it. About a Dog is one of those books that has a special kind of magic that makes you smile, love, and laugh all the way through.
* A copy of this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley for the purpose of an honest review. All conclusions are my own responsibility and I was not compensated for this review.