Romance, mystery & dogs with personality, all wrapped up with humor.
An impulsive pet spa owner loses her elderly client's prize pooch ... After a lifetime of impetuous mistakes, Jersey Shore pet spa owner Grace Donnelly outdoes herself when a client's prize poodle, a shoo-in to win the annual Fur Ball, goes AWOL while in her custody. With money, careers, and lives in jeopardy, Grace is not afraid to strap on the leather to go undercover in a fetish club looking for clues. Too bad her helpers consist of an aging hippie aunt, a renegade schnauzer, a drag queen, and a dominatrix or two. Worst of all, the only man truly qualified to help is her former flame, the most domineering male on the eastern seaboard.
A smokin' hot bodyguard has his own dangerous agenda ... Texas-born security specialist Nick Jackson faces his worst nightmare when Grace's amateur investigation nearly blows his covert operation. Unless he nails the con-artist who scammed his home-town's senior citizens and whacked a witness, his homicidal granddaddy will take justice into his own liver-spotted hands. To salvage his case, his sanity, and his ex-lover's velvety skin, Nick joins forces with the sassy crusader who rubs him the wrong way--and so many right ways too.
Together, they encounter an explosion of murder & mayhem... Action bounces from the upscale Shore community of Saltwater Estates to a beach harboring washed-up corpses, a yacht no honest preacher could possibly afford, and the bawdiest nightclub in Atlantic City.
With the Fur Ball rapidly approaching and hazards multiplying like bunnies, will Grace find the missing poodle in time, and can Nick nail the con-artist before his granddaddy does?
First in this series, what made this book enjoyable were the characters. Grace cares about people and tends to act impulsively for all the right reasons. She's also self-aware and still has feelings for her ex, Nick. Nick works security and still has feelings for Grace, only she keeps putting herself in danger. And now her attempt to find the missing dog lands her in the middle of his investigation into someone scamming senior citizens.
The pace of the story is steady, with hints at Grace and Nick getting back together, humorous situations especially with pot-smoking Aunt BONeth and Granddaddy Hiram. At each step of the way, there are more clues to how the dognapping is connected to the scamming. The story is well-plotted and the characters well-developed.
A fun read, the next in the series is on my TBR list. For those who enjoy cozy mystery with a side of romance and humor, Fur Ball Fever will entertain.
(Excerpt available on the book page!)