Welcome to Cozy Jo's Romance Review blog. This is where you'll find reviews and discussions on historical or contemporary romance books and maybe a few other bits and bobs thrown in for good measure.
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Monday, 1 September 2008

Santa Paws

Pleasant, canine themed anthology
3 Stars

This is a collection of 4 stories with all the couples finding love thanks to some delightful, determined canines.

Shakespeare and the Three Kings – Victoria Alexander (England, 1893)
With the death of his beloved aunt, Sir Oliver Stanhope inherits her home and her three pampered, terribly annoying Yorkshire Terriers. Luckily, before her death his aunt managed to acquire the services of a dog trainer. Unfortunately for Oliver, the dog trainer just happens to be the love of his life, an American that broke his heart ten years before.

Not very Christmassy but still a satisfying tale of redemption, forgiveness and love.

Athena’s Christmas Tail – Nina Coombs (Regency London)
When Robert, Viscount Brockton brings home his new wife, she hopes to make the best of their life together but he treats her very coldly. Aware that the pair are in love with each other yet neither can admit it, the couple’s dogs decide to do a little bit of matchmaking.

Not particularly deep, this story is still a fun tale (even with some of the story being told from the dogs’ perspective) but not at all festive.

Away In A Shelter – Annie Kimberlin (Modern Day)
Camille Campbell is a dedicated volunteer at the animal shelter when she agrees to work the shift over Christmas. Unbeknownst to her, Roger Matheson has also agreed to volunteer which does not bode well as the pair can’t stand each other. But that soon changes thanks to a timely blizzard and an adorable abandoned dog.

This was an enjoyable story that could have done with a little more time to make the ending seem less rushed.

Mr Wright’s Christmas Angel – Miriam Raftery (Los Angeles & Alaska)
A few days before Christmas, Joy Winters gets fired from her job as a doctor in a Los Angeles hospital. Feeling depressed, when a mysterious man named Kris Kringle offers her and her daughter two tickets to Alaska for a truly magical and old-fashioned Christmas, she jumps at the chance. When she arrives and promptly crashes her car, she is delighted to be rescued by the mysterious Nicholas Wright and his amazing dog.

I really adored this genuinely magical and sweetly festive story where you really root for all the characters on their way to a delightfully happy ending.

This Christmas anthology is certainly not the best that I have read as many of the stories really lacked any festive touches at all! Having said that, I did find that the last story really captured the true spirit of Christmas and it was definitely the highlight of this book for me closely followed by Victoria Alexander’s tale.

Perhaps not a book that you would go out of your way to find, this is still a good collection of wintery stories that offer a pleasant enough read. 3 stars.

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