The Truth About Love and Dogs by Lilly Bartlett
Today I am so happy to be reviewing The Truth About Love and Dogs by Lilly Bartlett. There are two lovely covers for this book and I think you will agree that they are both totally amazing.
Which one do I like best?
Damn, I knew I was going to ask myself that!
The shades of blue and green on the UK cover are my favourite colours, and I loved the guy with the beard… but Pugs in a basket?? Come on, it’s a no brainer!
What do you think?
Anyway, thank you to Michele Gorman for sending me a copy which I reviewed honestly.
Four little words, uttered by her husband…
‘Oh my god,’ he gasped into her shoulder. ‘Shannon!’
There’s just one problem: her name isn’t Shannon.
Rewind six months and Scarlett and Rufus aren’t in the honeymoon stage anymore so much as the honey-should-we-bother phase. Desperate to get their sparkle back, Scarlett has plotted, planned and waxed more than any woman should have to, but none of it is working. Which makes it very hard to start the family they want.
At least her business is going strong, even if her marriage isn’t. She and her best friend spend their days tangled up in dog leads and covered in fur. Scarlett/ is the fairy dogmother, training hopeless pets like compulsive eater Barkley, impulsive Romeo Murphy and bossy Biscuit. Meanwhile, her best friend walks the dogs and pines for the man who doesn’t know she exists. Thank goodness the women have each other.
If only Scarlett could work out how to get her marriage back on track. But Rufus isn’t sharing his feelings with her. He is, though, sharing with her best friend. Her best friend, Shannon.
Well, after reading the synopsis for The Truth About Love And Dogs I couldn’t wait to get started on this new book from Lilly Bartlett. I expected a light-hearted romance with lots of cute dogs and clueless owners.
Oh My Gosh! ….This book is so much more than that!
Scarlett and Shannon run a dog business together called Ruff Love (inspired!). Scarlett is a dog behaviorist and Shannon does the dog walking side of things. No dog is too much trouble for ‘fairy dog mother’ Scarlett, who welcomes everyone, including the ‘hoovers’ and ‘humpers’ of the Canine World.
Everyone will recognise traits of their own dogs in Biscuit, Murphy, and Hiccup, not to mention the whole cast of Scooby-Doo! I can’t let this review pass without literally screaming out loud “THANK YOU LILLY” for adding into this storyline that dogs are not fashion accessories to be paraded around in tiara’s, superhero costumes or the latest Kardashian designs! (sorry had to say that!)
I adored the dogs but with them came such an enchanting bunch of dog owners, all with their own insecurities but with one thing in common, they all loved their dogs to bits. Scarlett found herself helping the owners just as much as the dogs, which was applaudable because a happy dog needs a happy owner. Lilly Bartlett has done her homework here and the advice and training techniques that Scarlett uses are extremely well researched. (I will definitely be trying some of them out on my naughty little rescue dog!)
There is an interesting friend dynamic between Scarlett, Shannon and Scarlett’s husband Rufus. This really complicates a situation which arises and puts the whole friendship and business partnership in jeopardy.
I liked how the book tackles a serious subject but from a very different angle. The characters suffer emotionally and deal with the problem in different ways, which causes conflict in the relationship. I was totally invested in the characters wellbeing, and my heart ached for them. I felt that the characters reactions were demonstrated really accurately and their emotions were portrayed just as they would be in real life.
On a lighter note, Shannon is single and hoping to be noticed by her very own Mr. Darcy, who she sees in the park every day. However, Shannon is shy and hasn’t got the confidence to make an impression, she believes that they are destined not to meet. That is until he finally strikes up a conversation… just as she is picking up a big dollop of poodle poo!
I think I have made it clear that I loved this book. It had a bit of everything I look for and is far more than a fluffy feel-good read. Usually, I like to see one or two unsavoury characters but it didn’t matter because the characters were so multi-layered with completely natural flaws and insecurities. Humour flows nicely throughout the book, with the dogs adding some outrageous but completely believable moments. Romance readers won’t be disappointed, the relationship between Scarlett and Rufus is incredibly tender, compassionate and HOT!
I devoured it in a few days and would gladly give it six stars if I could!
About The Author
Lilly Bartlett’s cosy romcoms are full of laugh out loud moments, quirky characters and guaranteed happily-ever-afters.
Lilly is the pen-name of Sunday Times and USA Today best-selling author, Michele Gorman, who writes best friend-girl power chick lit under her own name.