Tuesday, April 17, 2007


So, it's Two-fer Tuesday here, thanks to horrible winds that took out both my power and my internet satellite yesterday. And for all of you that heard about the tragedy down the road from me in Blacksburg, please keep those folks in your thoughts and prayers.

This is my final Dish for Hometown Hero Week, and it's a super great way to be ending this special "theme-week" with you guys. I'll have the final Hometown Hero Week Wrap-up post on Saturday, to announce the contest winner of the three books that we've Dished this week, THE HAUNTING by Hope Tarr and GUYS & DOGS and BEWARE OF DOUG, both by Elaine Fox. Let me tell you a bit about BEWARE OF DOUG now though...

He's nobody's best friend!
Lily Tyler's very interested in her sexy new neighbor, private jet pilot Brady Cole. Brady could really go for smart, gorgeous Lily. The fire that's generated whenever they're together isn't just chemical... it's nuclear!
But then there's Doug...
The real ruler of the roost - Lily's noisy, nasty, matchmauling pooch - Doug likes to greet anyone he dislikes with yaps, nips and very unpleasant surprises, And Doug does not like Brady. (Doug, in fact, doesn't like anybody - except Lily, of course. And, oddly enough, the squeaky clean, partner-track attorney whom Lily's domineering dad would love for his dutiful daughter to marry.)
Brady's no canine fan to begin with - and Doug's the devil-dog incarnate! But Lily could never get serious with anyone who doesn't click with her precious puppy - so Brady's going to need a lot more than great looks, smooth charm, and hot passion to get himself out of the doghouse and into Lily's life!

It sounds pretty light from the BCC, doesn't it? Well, it's lighter than some of the books I Dish here, but really, it's not a fluff read. Plus, this BCC doesn't even begin to touch on some of the things that really interested me about the book.

The girl. Lily Tyler is a blast. She's an English professor at the University of Mary Washington in Fredericksburg. She has a very nice and orderly life, with her students, her neighbors, and her friends all having their own places in her heart. She tries not to think too much about her domineering Dad, but the way he insinuates himself into her life makes it difficult. She's got issues, of course. Most of them center on her trying to live her own life while not disappointing her father, walking that tight rope between seeking parental approval and fulfilling your own dreams. It's a theme that I enjoy seeing, and Ms. Fox does it well enough in this story.

The guy. Brady Cole is sex on two wheels. Well, at least he was. Now, he's trying to make a fresh start, and that includes not falling into old habits. He wants to see if he can try to be friends with a woman before going to bed with her, as all of his past relationships went too far too fast, and ended in disaster.

The dog. Doug. What a dog is Doug! He's even got his own POV. Ms. Fox does a terrific job of catching glimpses of what's going on in Doug's head and making him real for us. I never thought I'd enjoy being inside the head of a bossy pooch, but Doug was just too mischievous not to enjoy.

The friends and family. Friends play a big part in this second 'Burg book. Besides Megan Rose (and Sutter) from GUYS & DOGS, we also get to see Georgia and Penelope again. The four women get together to walk their dogs, to hang out, and to help each other through a few more of life's surprises during this story. Brady's brother and Lily's dad show up, each with their own special way of advancing the story. And there are even a few new people introduced, some with hidden secrets that not even a trained dog can detect.

The romance. Ahhh, the romance. It starts out rocky enough, with Lily first meeting Brady as he literally roars into her life on a Harley. Her initial feelings about him ( Didn't everyone know about pilots? They were all cocksure and obnoxious. She knew. She'd seen Top Gun. ) was so typical of Lily. There were some steamy encounters, of course. Lily was trying to deny her attraction to Brady, and Brady was trying to not re-make past mistakes with Lily. It boiled down to some really entertaining scenes, with a very satisfying love story that seemed more than realistic.

The setting. How could this be featured in my Hometown Hero Week if I didn't mention the town? Again, Ms. Fox features the 'Burg to perfection. Between stops at Hyperion (one of my favorite Old Towne coffeestops, to Mary Washington, to dinner at Augustine's, local places are prominently and proudly described. Right down to the running jokes about there being only a handful of eligible men in the entire town ( a sentiment with which many of the local women seem to agree), Ms. Fox captures the feel of Fredericksburg, brings it to life within the pages of her book, and almost seems to make it a character of its own.

BEWARE OF DOUG is available in your local bookstores, indie stores, and possibly even in the chain department stores and supermarkets still. If you get the chance, pick it up. It's a great read, deeper than the BCC indicates, but still light enough to be truly enjoyable. As it follows the story that began in GUYS & DOGS, I'm hoping that Ms. Fox is already at work on the stories of the other two women, Georgia and Penelope. You'll be the first to know if I get to read them!

Don't forget to enter the contest for your chance to win a signed copy of both BEWARE OF DOUG and GUYS & DOGS by Elaine Fox, as well as a personalized copy of THE HAUNTING by Hope Tarr. Just tell me why your hometown should, or should not, be featured in a book for an entry. For five entries, copy the BCC and cover of either THE HAUNTING or BEWARE OF DOUG onto your own blog, then come tell us in the comments. Contest ends Friday, and I'll announce the winner on Saturday. Good luck!

Keep Turning Those Pages,


danetteb said...

Hi Dee,
I dished about the books and the wonderful contest, at:


Hugs, Danette

Chari-Dee said...

I loved Doug having his own POV. At first when I saw it, though, I rolled my eyes. It wasn't something I'm used to seeing, and not sure I'd like to see that trend take, but Fox did a wonderful job with it and it really, really worked with this one.

I think I liked this book better than GAD, like you said, it has a bit more substance, and it just worked better for me.

Chantal said...

Hey, I just blogged about this one, too. LOL

I love it!