Thursday, December 27, 2012

Book Review: The Love Dog by Elsa Watson

This book should come with a warning.  

My review copy of The Love Dog by Elsa Watson arrived just a few days ago when I was multi-tasking:  shipping For Love of a Dog orders, baking a few holiday goodies, wrapping Christmas gifts, and so much more.

I made the mistake of opening the book and reading the first paragraph.  

From that point on my day consisted of juggling my to-do list with reading another chapter or two (or more) until I reached the end and sighed with satisfaction.

It is a dog-gone good read.

Here's the plot synopsis of The Love Dog from the publisher:
Fired from her job as a paralegal, Samantha Novak is in trouble. When Telltale, a Hollywood tabloid, asks her to write an expose on the reality television dating show, The Love Dog, Samantha is thrilled. She’s always dreamed of being a writer, and the fat paycheck won’t hurt. After being recently left at the altar, she’s not too keen on love either.   

Hired as the canine star’s handler, Samantha finds that digging up dirt on set is harder then she thought. 

Apollo, the show’s star, is a sweet golden retriever who takes his job as the “love dog” very seriously. He only wants to help couples fall in love and make everyone on set happy. Mason Hall, the show’s producer and leading man, is down to earth, charming, and... very attractive.

If Samantha doesn’t reveal to the world that the reality show isn’t exactly “real,” her new career will be over before it starts. But when she falls in love with Apollo and Mason, will she still have the heart to expose The Love Dog’s dirty secrets? 
This charming story is told from the point of view of Samantha Novak AND from Apollo, the "love dog."   I wasn't sure I would enjoy the first person narrative told from the dog's point of view, but I fell in love with Apollo immediately.  Truthfully, he reminded me a great deal of my own sweet dog boy, Jeffie, and I found his portion of the story delightful.

From Chapter One:
Fuzzy slippers?
Skeptical attitude?
Double check.
I plopped down next to my sister, Cassie, and clicked on the TV just in time to see a graphic of a giant pink heart—made out of tiny paw prints—materialize on the screen. Schmaltzy music poured out of the speakers. The screen flashed with a close-up of a beautiful golden dog, while over its head formed the words we’d been expecting: The Love Dog.

This light hearted, humorous, romantic romp of a book made me laugh and smile, plus shake my head at some of the human beings!  A perfect read this winter while you're snuggled up with your own furry best friend, The Love Dog would also be a wonderful dog lover gift.

For those of you who are like me and worry about the animal characters - absolutely no harm comes to Apollo.

About the author, Elsa Watson:

From 1996 to 1998, Elsa Watson served as Peace Corp Volunteer in Guinea-Bissau, West Africa, where she began writing novels, all in longhand.  She now lives on an island in Washington State with her husband, cat, and two dogs.  Her short work has appeared in the Writers Journal, Snowy Egret, and Renaissance Magazine.  Elsa is proud to live by the motto:  any day on which you pet a dog is a good day.

Elsa has always enjoyed speculating about what the dogs might be thinking, which led to her novel, Dog Days, and e-novella, A Christmas Tail.
The Love Dog (A Tor MM Original; $7.99) will be on sale to the public January 29, 2013.   ISBN 978-0-7653-6809-6  336 pages.  Available from all major book sellers.  I received my copy as an advance reading copy in exchange for my honest review.  You can pre-order The Love Dog at Barnes and Noble and Amazon now.

I'm pleased to give a very enthusiastic recommendation for The Love Dog by Elsa Watson.  Be sure to come back to Talking Dogs tomorrow for a chance to win a copy of Dog Days  (Elsa Watson's previous novel)!


  1. Your review makes this sound like a book I'd enjoy...Will have to keep a lookout for it.

  2. What a fantastic review. Your appreciation of the book definitely comes through.

  3. I'll put this on my list. :-) I always juggled my chores in that manner when the new Harry Potter book came out. I could clean my house and read the book in an entire weekend. I'm not sure I would have opened the book during the Christmas rush though....I did have quite a bit to do! LOL

  4. sounds like a great book! Thank you for sharing it with us, great review! I rarely read other's book reviews because they are often books that I will be reviewing but thankfully this one isn't!

  5. Wow, Mom could use a good read in a romance. She has been much to busy lately. We will put this on our list. Must take care to enjoy the little things.

  6. Oh, I love Elsa! I read her first book, Dog Days and it was great. I'll have to get this one too. It sounds like another fun one!


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