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Talk about an emotional roller coaster! There are so many threads to pull in Man's Best Friend but Roxanne St. Claire took each thread and wove it into an AMAZING tapestry. Captivated by the opening flashback only to have my heart shattered, our lovely author drenched my spirit in every possible emotion. Definitely have the tissues within reach!
Love, tragedy, mystery, worry and celebration. This book has it all, and then some, in spades! Oh, and some REALLY good chuckles, too! (Courtesy of Gramma Finnie, Yiayia and their new cohort, Max!)
Declan and Evie will steal your heart along with their furry friend Lusky a.k.a Judah. And let me tell you (without actually telling you) the ending is every bit as captivating as the beginning...and everything in between! SAVOR this read, my friends. So much happens that you don't want to miss or skim over a word!
MAN'S BEST FRIEND is a standalone read with a happy ever after. It is part of the big dogmother's series. This is a great series and this is the best book so far. (I say that every time). Lots of times in a series it seems things start to go downhill after the second or third book. Not so with this series, they just get better and better. There is a large cast of characters but it is fairly easy to keep up. You don't feel lost if you start at any point. Naturally it is much better if you start with 1 and work your way to the current release. you just have a better understanding of the characters. The setting is the town of Bitter Bark the home of the largest training facility in the state. Run by the Kilcannon family.
This is Declan and Evie's story. As youngsters they are very best of friends. They tell each other everything and they spend a lot of time together. As they become young adults their feelings start to change and they are falling in love. They have always celebrated their birthday's together since they were born on the same day. They always go camping. On this particular birthday they take their relationship to the next level. They have sworn to be together forever. Their lives are planned out - by them. She will be a neurosurgeon for animals and he will be the Chief of the local firefighters in their town.
The next morning they head home from their camp site full of love, hope, and plans for their future. When they get to Declan's house and pull into the driveway it is filled with cars, they know something has happened and it isn't good. Declan's dad, a fireman like Declan, was killed in a fire early that morning. Declan is beyond devastated. He has three younger siblings and a mother that will now depend on him. The weight of losing his father and all that is now his responsibility was crushing his spirit. Then they discovered that it was a small fire and no way should they have lost their top firefighter. An investigation didn't prove much and the file was retired. Declan walked away from Evie and never looked back. He was motivated by guilt, anger, depression. He sunk into a dark hole.
Evie tried everything to get him to respond to her and he wouldn't. She left for college and eventually gave up. It is now 20 years later and the story begins. This is absolutely the best story. One minute you are laughing out loud and the next there is a need for a tissue. Some of the moments are very sad and some are just so touching that it brings tears. Lots of mystery as Declan tries to figure out why his dad died when it shouldn't have happened. The family is all involved as always and the two grannies are front and center with a deck of cards and a cask in their purse. It is funny, romantic, mysterious, fun, and touching. I loved it and definitely recommend it. I recommend the whole Dogfather series that starts it all and then this group in the Dogmothers. Great books and great reads.
I was not paid for this review. I am not a writer nor do I know one. I am not kin to this author. I am a reader and this is my opinion, nothing more, nothing less. 9/27/2020
This is the sixth installment of the successful Dogmothers Series by Roxanne St. Claire, a stand alone book but for your better enjoyment I’ll recommend to read the books in order.
This is the story of the oldest Mahoney’s brother, Bitter Bark’s Firefighter Captain Declan Mahoney and the lady who always held his heart, Evie Hewitt. A second chance love story, sprinkled with a dash of drama and suspense it is hard not to start and stop until you see that final grammar period. These two were working towards their forever after when a fire that turn into tragedy re arrange said plans and it is been 20 years since they have been face to face together.
Evie Hewitt left Bitter Bark and became a successful veterinary which specialized in Neurology, but as it happens to many, the job takes a toll and she decides to take a sabbatical, return to her roots and visit with his grandfather Max who lives in the historical Gloriana House, their family house, which has been passed down from Thaddeus Bushrod founder of Bitter Bark. What these two professionals don’t realized is that their family had a hand in their chance encounter. Enter Gramma Finnie and Yiayia, the Dogmothers who devised a chance encounter for our protagonists with the help of Max and a lovable Siberian-Malamute mix who will need their help, who will be the main reason for they coming back and revisited that fateful night and who also give a nudge towards their future.
I loved this book. Oh the feels! First, there was a Siberian mix puppy in my childhood and Rocki you just knew how to make Judah special. Second, this is a romance story where both central characters have fulfilled their goals indepently, they know what they really want and this time around are well prepared to work and fight for their HEA. Third, family…specially all the senior characters with their wisdom and perennial youthfulness at heart, they’re a force to reckon with. And lastly, how can I not give a shout out to Bitter Bark as a whole?
Man’s Best Friend kept me up all night, made me laugh out loud, unearthed happy memories, guess constantly as a mystery is solved and believe that love is not only for twenty/thirty something…it is ageless. Five shining stars!
The Dogmothers Series is a spinoff from the Dogfather Series, both series sport unique covers that portray rescue dogs from Alaqua Animal Refuge in FL and “local heroes” as their companions. During releasing month, part of the sales are donated to them.
These are my most sincere thoughts and opinion. Although I received ARC, I bought a copy because my personal collection will be incomplete without it.
Declan and Evie have been best friends for so long and they always believed their friendship would last forever. That friendship moves to a new level on the night they go on their annual birthday camping trip. Unfortunately, things begin to unravel when Declan's father dies in a fire trying to save Evie's family. Promises made and plans for their future made just hours before become lost as Declan struggles with his loss and dedicates himself to taking care of his family. Evie is heartbroken and though she tries to keep their friendship alive, things fall apart and she leaves to return to college and build her future without Declan.
Twenty years have past and Evie is home to be with her Grandfather, whose health is declining. She has a lot going on in her life but one thing she knows for sure, she wants another chance with Declan. Declan is close to reaching his goal as the Chief of the fire department. He also wants another chance with Evie. Of course, a dog brings the two friends back together.
We all know that they get their happily ever after, but all the things that happen during their time together make this book a fascinating read. There is so much love, so much hurt, so much joy, so much sorrow. I felt like I was on a roller coaster, and loved every minute of it. The ending was a shock and really made the story interesting to follow. A little more drama than the other books, and that was perfect for me. True love, true friendship won the day. I also like that Evie's grandfather was in cahoots with the grannies. It was a nice twist to the story.
Roxanne St Claire has a wonderful talent for drawing emotions from her readers. This book hit all the marks she strives for in each book. There is no question she put her heart and soul into writing it and every other book in this series. Now we must wait for the next one.
A beautiful second chance romance. Two best friends who had just recognized their romantic love for each other are torn apart by tragedy. They spend twenty years apart, catching glimpses of each other but never gathering enough courage to talk to each other. Captain Declan Mahoney is 41, he's finally realized his life has passed him by. In spite of being an excellent firefighter, respected citizen and loving family member he is alone, locked in a deep dark basement of his own making. But Evie Hewitt is back in town, helping her elderly grandfather and his historic Victorian mansion. She's a neurologist veterinarian surgeon. She's 40, very well respected professionally, a soft heart for anyone, but especially animals, and she's alone. Of course, the dog mothers see exactly what needs to be fixed. So, mix together the huge Irish and Greek families, a lost but loving dog rescue, Dogmothers, a grandpa looking for family, the history of Bitter Bark and a twenty year old mystery and the result is a well written (love the internal asides throughout the character's external dialogue), interesting and bittersweet story. Dec and Evie deserve to be together, they finally are able to get out of their own ways to find their happy ever after.
Another great book from Roxanne St.Claire, number 6 in the Dogmother series. This book was a more mature Romance of two people, Declan Mahoney, chief firefighter of Biter Bark & Evie Hewitt, childhood best friend of Declan’s, & veterinary neurologist-neurosurgeon & Judah, Declan’s Husky-Malamute injured stray dog. There was a 20 year hiatus between Declan & Evie’s life after high school. They were both headed on their life’s path to their respective careers but they were both missing that all important person to complete their lives. Declan & Evie were carrying baggage from their past that needed tending to before they could go on to the future. Of course Gramma Finnie and Yiayia had to stick their noses in Declan & Evie’s life to make sure they were on the right path to love. Ms. St.Claire was able to blend all the characters from both series to complete the story so it can be read as a stand-alone without missing a beat. Of course it’s better if you start from the beginning to get the best out of the series, you’ll not regret it. I can’t tell you which book I love best cause each one surpasses the other. I can now go on to read the Christmas story, “Feliz Naughty Dog”. I can’t wait. Enjoy these series!
This is The Dogmothers Book Six How are we already on book 6? There are a lot of Kilcannons and Mahoneys and now Santorinis. Just one BIG, happy family, with lots of dogs. Evie Hewett and Declan Mahoney were best friends all through school, from third grade through the year Declan turned 21. Then Declan’s firefighter dad is killed helping to put out a fire in Evie’s family home. They just can’t connect after. Declan feels he has to become the man of his family and they grow apart. Now, 20 years later, they run into each other again. Declan has adopted a dog abandoned at the fire station. Evie, a veterinary neurologist, notices something is wrong with his gait. They work together to solve the dog’s problems, but Evie’s family has problems as well. In the course of helping the dog, Evie remembers her roots and her love for being a small-town vet. But she is now a bigwig an NC State School of Veterinary Medicine. Can she leave all that for a small town? The people and their problems grab you right away. You may well cry as you read it (good tears, trust me). I think you will enjoy this book a lot.
I loved this book! I loved every minute of reading this book! As usual it was a heartwarming story about love, family, friendship and support!! Evie and Declan were so likeable and perfect for each other. I was so glad that when they got back together their story was filled with kindness and forgiveness..... Deep love and understanding..... There was very little angst in this storyline which made it even more of a beautiful and heart melting read! This touch of mystery throughout the book was interesting and intriguing and it has a very satisfying resolution. As usual all the characters were delightful.... Colorful, quirky, and so endearing. I always enjoy all the affection and interactions between the various family members and their dogs. There is always such a lovely feeling of enjoyment that I get when I read one of the Dogmothers, or the original Dogfather, series. They are such a treat to read especially now in these turbulent times and I highly recommend this book and the entire two wonderful series. You will love them!!!😇
Book 6 in the Dogmother Series. Grandma Finnie and Yiayia strive to see couples in love. In Man’s Best Friend Declan Mahoney and Evie Hewitt are childhood best friends. They share everything, and one night while celebrating there birthdays in the mountains take it to the next level, and become more then each expected. Declan wants to take after his father, and chief of Bitter Bark Fire Department. Evie wants to be the best veterinary neurologist. But the next day everything comes crashing down. 20 years later and Declan along with Lusky the pup who was left at the fire station strolls into the bakery and sees Evie. He’s speechless and words fail him. He owes her an explanation. He can’t let her leave. When they part ways she notices something with the pup. He knows only she would. It’s what she does.
Buy the book to see what happens. So much more to come.
Ms, St. Claire writes with so much heart. All these books in the DogFather and Dog Mother series are filled with Family values, love, dogs, puppies, humor, heart, and so much more.
I don't know how Roxanne St. Claire does it, but every time I think the next book in a series can't possibly be as good as the last one, I find it's not only just as good, but possibly even better! Declan was a puzzle to me in prior stories, and the idea that people could be apart for 20 years and then come back together was hard for me to imagine - but this author is magic! Along with Evie, the reader gets to know, understand, forgive and love Declan across the complicated twists and turns of a great story. And of course there's a wonderful dog in the mix. Superbly written, lots of emotional ups and downs, a little suspense, and the usual high jinks from the Dogmothers and family - this story is yet another (!) new favorite in a wonderful series. Keep them coming, Roxanne!