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Why this book
I picked this book of the shelf at my local library really because it was an attention grabbing bright orange and sounded a bit of lighted heart romantic fun. It is part of the little black dress publishing house for romantic fiction.
This book is written by three authors Jennifer Cruise, Anne Stuart and Lani Diane Rich. They are all awarding wining romantic novelists with comic leanings in their books. Each author writes form the perspective of one of the three main characters from the book. If you want to know more about their writing process for this novel they have a good website www.dogsandgodessess.com
About the book
Abby Richmond had come to Summerville, Ohio, to sell the bakery she just inherited from her grandmother whom she doesn't have much memory of as her mother cut ties between them when Abby was a child. However events take a different turn when she and her dog Bowser decide to stay and but attend the Kammani Gula dog-obedience class being held at the local college. Here she meets Web designer Daisy Harris and her mums neurotic dog Bailey and Professor Shar Summer and her paranoid dachshound Wolfie. After drinking some of Kammani's special "tonic," Abby, Daisy, and Shar notices things starting to change not least they can understand their dogs better because they are talking to them. From this point onwards chaos mayhem and romance with Gods descends.
I think the first thing to say about this book from the start is that you really do need to suspend reality as you read it and if you find that hard to do then you will probably want to chuck this book against the wall. The reason this suspension is needed is you are entering a world of Gods and Goddesses and magic so to enjoy this book and you need to just go with it.
I wasn't sure how well collaboration between three authors would work but I have to admit the joins in this novel where one novelist takes over from another were not noticeable to me as the reader. I think from reading their website about the process of writing this book it is remarkable really the way the novel flows so well.
I think anyone who has pets whether they are dogs or not in all likelihood will have spoken to them at some point and thought the animal has understood them. The commentary that the dogs provide in this book is just wonderful and I am sure some of their comments pet owners the world around can imagine their pet telling them. The dogs in some ways actually have the best lines in this book and had me giggling out loud at their comebacks to the other characters.
The women in the novel are cleverly pitched to include one in their twenties, thirties and forties in the hope that the reader can identify with one of them. The characters despite being written by different novelist have a lot of similar characteristics so much so that I found myself forever muddling up Abby and Daisy and who was who even when they were getting it together with the different romantic male leads in the book. In a lot of ways I actually preferred the dogs in this book to the humans and could tell all of them apart with ease.
I found the sex scenes to be a bit cliché and cringe inducing really and they certainly did nothing to raise my temperature as it were. At some points I just skim read these scenes as I found them just not too my reading taste at all. This seemed to be at odds to some flashes on brilliance within the novel such as the inability of the evil goddess to adapt to 21st century and getting hooked on anti- depressants and other medication.
There is a charming quality to the writing at times and the whole book has a fairy tale quality to it with a dash of new age mystery and magical cookies and its unlike any other book I have read in a long time and I really can't think of a book to compare it to, to say if you enjoy this then this is the book for you. This is because it is a modern book with romance as it key selling point but with gods and goddesses from mythical times in it.
The pace of this novel is very fast and furious and everything seems to happen at speed in the novel.
This isn't my regular type of reading material but it certainly was a fun read it's ridiculous, magical, silly and delightful. I have deducted a dooyoo star for the cringe sex scenes and because I found it hard to tell Daisy and Abby apart at times. If you fancy something a bit wacky then this is the book for you.
Paperback: 384 pages
Publisher: Little Black Dress (5 Feb 2009)
Currently available from Amazon for £5.35 new and on the marketplace from 75 pence used.