- Title: Pride and Puppies
- Author: Lizzie Shane
- Publisher: Forever
- Release Date: 11/22/22
- Genre: Contemporary Romance
- Age Range: Adult
- Rating: ★★★★
- Publisher’s Summary: Struggling to find her modern-day Mr. Darcy, a Jane Austen fan gets more than she bargained for when she swears off men and adopts an adorable puppy. 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?
I am a huge Jane Austen fan, and I will never stop talking about how much I love her work. The name of Pride and Puppies immediately drew me in. A main character who loves Jane Austen AND puppies? I was intrigued.
I loved that every chapter of Pride and Puppies starts with a quote from an Austen novel. They effectively set the stage for each chapter and give the reader a sense of what to expect. Austen’s influence on the characters certainly is felt throughout the story. Charlotte and her sisters are all named after Austen characters, and George annotates a copy of Emma for Charlotte.
Charlotte immediately won me over. She is concerned that she is “too much” and “needy,” but I never got that sense reading the story. She just struck me as a passionate and caring person who is absolutely worthy of love. George, similarly, is very likable. At the beginning, I felt bad for George that he was pining after Charlotte who had sworn off men. From the begining of the book though, it’s clear that Geroge and Charlotte care a lot about each other. They have such a strong friendship that makes their romantic relationship even stronger. Charlotte is willing to give up tickets to Hamilton to help George when his dog is sick, and George takes care of Charlotte when she’s injured.
The fact that Charlotte and George are both great dog parents just makes them that much more endearing. Charlotte makes sure to send her puppy, Bingley, to training, and she makes sure he even has a place to sleep when she spends time at George’s home. Their mutual love for their dogs just brings them closer together.
I will admit that there were times when I felt like George is a little too perfect. He’s great at his job, a great musician, a great brother. I didn’t blame Charlotte for worrying that he spends a lot of time humoring her rather than focusing on his own needs. I never doubted though that George cared deeply about her.
Both Charlotte and George are close to their families. George has a book club with his sisters, which is so cute. He supports his sister when she’s having marital problems and contemplates moving back to Denver just to be there for her. Charlotte and her sisters lost their mom young, but they have an annual Jane Austen tea in part to pay tribute to her.
Pride and Puppies is a pretty PG-13 romance novel. There are references to intimacy between Charlotte and George, but it is alluded to rather than being described in detail. It felt fitting for a story that heavily references Austen’s work.
I was thrilled when I realized that Pride and Puppies is the fourth book of a series. I will certainly go back and read the rest of the books that precede it.