Series Name: Pine Hollows, #4

He turned to George, his guitar cradled in his lap. “You need to start paying more attention when I talk. Didn’t I just tell you the best bass player isn’t always the best bass player? It’s all about chemistry, jud. It’s not about being perfect – it’s about finding that perfect fit.” Howard eyed him. “You really scared she’s gonna decide she wants some else that you’d move halfway across the country?”

This is a sweet small town romance that features adorable puppies.

Dr. Charlotte Rodriguez is single—again—and she blames Jane Austen. She made brooding, aloof men sound oh sodreamy. But after years of failing to find her own Mr. Darcy, Charlotte decides it’s time to swear off dating. She’s going to lavish all her love and affection on someone who actually deserves it: her new puppy, Bingley.

And there’s no one better to give her pet advice than her neighbor and coworker George Leneghan. He’s quiet and patient and, best of all, way too sweet to ever be her type. But as their friendly banter turns flirty, the unimaginable happens—Charlotte starts catching feelings.

Just as Charlotte is trying to untangle what it is she truly wants, George announces he’s contemplating a cross-country move. Suddenly, Charlotte wonders if she’s kept her soulmate in the friend zone so long that she’s entirely missed her chance at a happily ever after. Dear Reader, could it be possible she’s had it wrong all this time?

This is a book for Jane Austen fans. It has some clever references to Austen characters . It’s part of a series but can easily be read as a standalone. This felt like a sweet and funny romance. I enjoyed the many references and side remarks that pulled in Austen but felt like it got a little heavy handed at times. The ending is super sweet and ties it all together.

Charlotte and George are a cute couple of friends but I kind of found them both a little boring? I liked their banter at the beginning of the book but didn’t see the stakes needed to make their relationship believable. I think it’s partially a character development issue for me rather than a storyline. Charlotte was a little annoying and overpowering for me and George was very much the sweet nice guy. While I know a lot of the book is about character growth and personal development, it didn’t make for a tight romance in my opinion. They are, however, delightful characters and I was rooting for them.

I loved the dogs in this book. If you are an animal lover than you will laugh out loud and be charmed at the antics. Lizzie Shane really nails her dogs here. And how can you not love this cover? And the friends and small-town vibe of this book was perfection. I fell for Pine Hollows and all of the antics of the locals. Also – this book is partially set in a retirement home and I live for wise older characters sharing their life experience. It makes my heart grow three sizes every time. 

All in all Pride and Puppies is a sweet and charming Hallmarkesque story that will keep you entertained for an afternoon. 

Thank you to Forever for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.