REVIEW: TBR Challenge – Mutts and Mistletoe
MUTTS AND MISTLETOE by Natalie Cox is an eccentric romp through the holiday season. There are plenty of pups for dog-lovers to adore, as well as a cute veterinarian, and enough quirky characters to make you laugh.
Why was this book in Dorine’s TBR? I have a weakness for dogs on book covers. I’ve owned 4 dogs in my lifetime, all who made me crazy and held my heart in their paws, and I miss them. Now, I get my pup fix from family and friends and books. Who can resist animals and a Christmas theme? That’s how this book landed in my basket at Barnes and Noble last month. I have hoards of Christmas books to choose from, but those hugging puppies got me. It was the perfect pick for our #TBRChallenge Holiday theme.
Living alone in the London area after her breakup with the cheating ex-boyfriend isn’t always as fun as Charlie thinks. Especially after a mini explosion in her apartment building gives her a head injury and a ruined apartment. Needing a sabbatical, Charlie agrees to stay with her friend Jez who runs a posh dog kennel at her home in the country.
As she’s healing, Charlie decides to help Jez out at the kennel while she takes a vacation. How hard can it be? Not-a-dog-lover-city-girl-Charlie is over her head before she takes on more boarders without her friend’s permission. Needless to say, things will only get worse before they get better!
Our heroine Charlie is full of snark. The local veterinarian matches wits with her easily and doesn’t take her crap without giving it back. The dogs are adorable. This light-hearted story works hard at trying to make the reader laugh with Charlie’s antics, but it was her Bulgarian neighbor and helper who finally succeeded at making me laugh-out-loud on page 136. Valko’s lack of proper English skills get him in trouble more than once, but page 136 was hilarious.
I wasn’t keen on Charlie’s irresponsible attitude, which sometimes came off as careless. I’m sure my overprotective mama-bear attitude regarding animals growled. That’s because Charlie made me worry that she wasn’t capable of taking proper care of the animals she had agreed to care for, especially when money offered was doubled or tripled.
Even though she irritated me a lot, I knew she was a work-in-progress and not completely hopeless. Over time, I realized she was trying to cover up her true feelings and a huge heart. That didn’t make her actions okay, but I understood them, and hoped everyone would come out of this situation unharmed.
By page 196 I laughed out-loud again because Charlie’s sarcasm slayed me. Her dependents are growing, and without the true owner of the kennel’s permission. It’s one of those moments that’s so weird and far-fetched, but considering Charlie and her luck for sticking her foot in it, perfectly understandable and realistic. This should be a Hallmark movie. I’d watch it for sure.
A bit of a madcap caper at the end, Charlie realizes she has found a home at Cozy Canine Cottages. We are rewarded by some satisfying romance, but it’s not the full focus of this novel. Charlie and her cute canine crew, assisted by a bevy of nutty friends, entertained and made me laugh. If you love animals, especially dogs, you’ll enjoy this fun holiday story.
Review by Dorine, courtesy of TheZestQuest.com. Paperback copy purchased. Thanks in advance for following links and sharing this review on social media.
Mutts and Mistletoe by Natalie Cox
Category: Contemporary Romantic Comedy
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons (September 24, 2019)
Rated 4 out 5