Review of ‘The pet boutique’ by Suzie Carr.
Taylor Henshaw is an accomplished bestselling author suffering from writer’s block. To help her find her writing mojo again, her editor sends her to work in a pet shop that needs serious building renovations. While working on the project, Taylor meets Lexie Tanner, an attractive photographer and pet shop manager. As the refurbishment project progresses, Taylor and Lexie explore their budding attraction, but Taylor is a complicated woman dealing with bereavement and unsolved issues from her past. Will they have a happily ever after?
This is a slow-burn romance with the background of a building renovation and a cute dog as a co-lead. ‘The pet boutique’ refurbishment progresses as Taylor rebuilds her life and heals her old wounds. Both women leads are multi-layered and believable, their chemistry is built slowly but surely with the help of Cashmere, the dog, who acts as a facilitator in their relationship. Ms. Carr knows how to bring a dog character to life, to showcase their bonding with humans, their ability to support their masters in times of need and to understand the heartbreak of losing a pet.
The romance is well written as well as the network of different relationships and people participating in the pet shop project. I haven’t read many books by Ms. Carr but I listened to a few of her ‘Curvy life’ podcasts and I could see throughout the story bits and pieces of her own life philosophy. Hers is a positive and empowering outlook. I liked that aspect of the novel but, for my taste, she put too much emphasis on the dog frolics rather than the human relationships which fell a bit in the background. I think the author poured her heart out inspired in her bond with her own pet and her eventual loss. For me, it felt a bit excessive, but I’m sure that dog lovers will appreciate this better.
Overall, a good slow-burn romance in which the dog steals the show. 4 stars.
ARC provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.