by Roxanne St. Claire
The Dogmothers - Book 5
Publisher: South Street Publishing
Release Date: June 12, 2020
Reviewed by PJ
John Santorini has his hands full this summer and not just with Maverick, the wild and willful puppy he recently adopted. He's trying to franchise his business, he's got serious staffing issues, and his biggest investor still hasn't committed to financing. But all of those problems fade away when a five year-old girl pounces on his puppy in the park and pronounces him "Mine!" John can handle a kid with a crush on little Mav. But he's not so sure what to do with his instant attraction to her mother, a beautiful young widow who brightens his world the minute she arrives in town.
Summer Jackson has come to Bitter Bark for one reason: to meet a man. But the man she plans to connect with isn't there. Instead, she finds two outrageous grannies who want to marry her off, discovers a colorful extended family that wraps her in love, and crushes hard on a Greek charmer who offers her a place to stay and a job for the season. John may not have been the man Summer intended to meet, but his soul-melting kisses soon have her rethinking all her plans. He's smart, sexy, sweet, and his impossibly adorable puppy is helping her daughter overcome her baffling speech impediment.
It doesn't take long before Summer and John are dreaming of the happy ending they've both been denied. But then the past comes back to wreak havoc on all their lives, and Summer's real reason for coming to town threatens to destroy this budding little family. Will John have to settle for a Summer fling...or do the Dogmothers have the recipe for romance one more time?
PJ's Thoughts:This book is everything I wanted, everything I needed. It's sweet, funny, deeply emotional, and so doggone good that it left my heart overflowing with joy. So much so, that as soon as I turned the final page all I wanted to do was go back to the beginning and read it all over again.
St. Claire has a talent for creating fully-developed characters then bringing them to life on the pages of her novels. By the time I finished this book, I felt as if I knew John, Summer, Destiny, and yes, even puppy Maverick. Like the other characters of this series, they have become so real to me that their sorrows are my sorrows, their fears are my fears, their joy is my joy. I'm 100% invested in their lives and their happiness. That is Roxanne St. Claire's gift.
John and Summer are one of my favorite couples in this series. I loved how Summer jumped in to help John at his restaurant over the summer and the friendship that developed between them. Their chemistry is immediately apparent but St. Claire gives them the time to form a solid foundation of friendship before taking their relationship further. Of course, as usual, the matchmaking grannies try to hurry things along. They're such a hoot.
I'm not sure I've ever met a child character in a romance who I've loved as much as Destiny. She stole my heart and, to be honest, the entire book. She made me laugh, made me cry, made my heart overflow with emotion. This is one very special little girl. I love how the author not only made John's relationship with Summer central to this book but also his relationship with Destiny. This is a little girl who has grown up without a daddy and she wants one in her life. Watching her relationship with John blossom was as satisfying as watching the adult relationship he has with her mom. Then there's Destiny's bond with John's puppy, Maverick. One more love story to add to the slate and what a sweet, heart-tugging tale it is.
If you're looking for a feel-good story this summer that makes you laugh, sigh, shed a few tears, and leaves your heart bursting with happiness, Hush, Puppy is the book for you.
You don't have to have read the previous books in the Dogmother and Dogfather series to enjoy Hush, Puppy but once you've met the matchmaking grannies as well as the rest of the Kilcannon, Mahoney, and Santorini clans, prepare to want their stories as well. Truly, I don't think it's possible to read one of these books and not fall in love with the whole darn bunch.
Tell me what has your heart bursting with joy these days. Is it a book you're reading? A pet? A special child in your life? Maybe it's simply the beauty of flowers in all their blooming glory. Let's share some goodness today.
One person who comments before 11:00 PM, June 15 will receive a print copy of the Dogfather holiday novella, Bark! the Herald Angels Sing (which also includes the first Dogfather holiday novella, Santa Paws is Coming to Town), signed by the author.
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