Standing between Stephanie and her dream is one hundred pounds of lovable trouble.
It should have been so simple for Stephanie Pink: Meet up with Agnes Wharton in a small town in California, retrieve the reclusive author’s valuable new manuscript, and be promoted to a full-fledged literary agent.
But Agnes’s canine companion, Sweetness, decides to make a break for it before Stephanie can claim her prize. Until Agnes has Sweetness safely back at home in Eagle Cliff, Washington, Stephanie will never set eyes on the manuscript she needs to make her dreams come true.
When Stephanie tracks the runaway mutt to a campground, she meets Rhett Hastings—a man also on the run from a different life and a costly mistake. Rhett agrees to help Stephanie search for the missing dog . . . thus launching a surprising string of adventures and misadventures.
Once Sweetness gets added to the mix, it’s a recipe for love and loss, merriment and mayhem, fun and faith in the backwoods of the Pacific Northwest.
SERIES: Love Unleashed #2
GENRE: Contemporary Inspirational Romance
PUBLISHER: Harvest House
RELEASE DATE: August 1, 2016
“Revisions can be brutal.”
Y’all. Dana Mentink writes the most hysterical dogs! I laughed through most of Seek and Find, and I laughed through most of Sit, Stay, Love. And I positively chortled through very nearly all of Fetching Sweetness! But more from me in a moment… First, Zuzu insists on weighing in. (Short of giving her her own blog, I had to promise her a regular feature on this one. She’s such a diva. But an adorable one nonetheless.)
<glances around to make sure Mom isn’t hovering>
She sure is protective of her blog.
<swishes tail nonchalantly when Mom glances over>
I feel as though I have a limited amount of time at the keyboard. So. Fetching Sweetness. Let’s talk about it. Specifically, let’s talk about Sweetness because that’s really all I care about. I’ll let Mom worry about his human traveling companions.
Sweetness is … how can I put this? Well, he makes for great comic relief! He IS sweet (more on that later) but he’s also pretty quirky. Mom says I should know. When she and dad adopted me, they circled “quirky” on the “characteristics you are looking for” section of the hoosegow application. She says I certainly have lived up to that one. I, however, have never developed a fascination with a spatula of all things. I mean, really, Sweetness. Balls. Chew toys. An occasional sock. BONES. But a common household spatula? Hmmm… I asked Mom if I could borrow one to see what the appeal was. She gave me a look that answered my question for me. So I’ll have to take his bark for that one.
Sweetness also has a tendency to run off, which really forms the plot for the whole story. But sometimes his running off brings back some additional traveling companions and shows off his sweet side. I think he’d make a good K-9 officer, like Hawk from Seaside Secrets … or Boomer from Kate James’ When I Found You (the review that made me famous). I mean, yeah, he runs away … but Hawk eats things. Maybe Boomer could be their training officer. He seems to have his act together.
There were some tense moments when I wasn’t sure if Sweetness would make it back to his owner or not (i.e. the running off thing), and there was a particularly hairy moment with a c-a-t. Nasty creatures, those. This one proved me right. In the end, though, enemy feline aberration scene notwithstanding, Fetching Sweetness gave me all the warm cozy feelings that I get from my blanket-and-pillow forts and a lot of great chuckles too!
Zuzu’s Rating: 4 paws and a tail wag! (That’s the highest!)
Thank you, Zuzu… I think. As always. 🙂
Now that I have taken back the reins of this review, let’s talk about Fetching Sweetness – more than what Zuzu’s rather one-track canine mind covered.
This latest book in the Love Unleashed series from Harvest House Publishers is hilarious and sweet and cute and romantic and all-around fun. I laughed, I swooned, I got teary, and I was reminded that God imagines much better dreams for me than I can. Even as the avid reader of fiction that I am.
Which brings up a key point for all my blog followers. You will LOVE Stephanie Pink, the heroine of Fetching Sweetness. She is a book addict, just like we are. She can’t go long periods of time without reading a book or she gets “edgy”, and when she totally read too much into some supplies that Rhett had and labeled him a serial killer she blamed the misunderstanding on the fact that she reads “a lot of fiction”. Something to which I’m sure we can all relate. But one thing I loved so much about Stephanie’s story is the authenticity that Dana Mentink gives her – how Stephanie’s looking for her storybook ending but got derailed by revisions. Revisions she blames God for, and so she’s done trusting Him with her happily-ever-after. (Don’t worry – it doesn’t stop there… but you’ll have to read it to find out what happens.)
Rhett…. oh be still my book-boyfriend-collecting-heart Rhett. I kind-of pictured Rhett as looking and sounding a little like James Denton. He can be very put together and obliviously snooty one minute and then adorably flustered and out of his element in the next. Plus, he has a great wry sense of humor, displayed quite nicely when Stephanie thought he was a serial killer and tells him to stay away from her while threatening him with some… unconventional… weapons. (“Or what? You’ll flip me like a pancake?”) His soft side will have you melting, and watching him fall in love (and act on it) will kick start a swoon or two for sure. But the best part about Rhett? He’s new to Jesus. And He’s not above googling how to say grace or trying to argue the finer points of “love thy neighbor”. I loved the sincerity of his new faith journey and it endeared him to me even more.
Bottom Line: Stephanie and Rhett are both on a journey. Literally…. figuratively… and spiritually. Dana Mentink has created a story that ties all of these together beautifully – and with a lot of fun! The common thread between the two characters – of siblings and regrets and plans – was made all the more meaningful by the faith elements woven unpreachily (new word) throughout the story as well as the ways in which Sweetness drove a few points home on his own. And Sweetness – the quirky, endearing, slobbery mess of a dog who eats pancakes and chews on spatulas and rescues the wounded and abandoned. Sweetness steals the show. And a few kisses. And a whole lot of laughter. He may be a dog, but you get the treat when you sit down to read Fetching Sweetness! An absolute delight in every way!
(I received a copy of this book in exchange for only my honest review.)
My Rating: 5 stars / Fantastic!
KissingBook Level: 3 / Will forget to breathe on several occasions.
Purchase a copy: http://bit.ly/2auLee3
See what others are saying: Litfuse
Dana Mentink lives in California, where the weather is golden and the cheese is divine. Dana is an American Christian Fiction Writers Book of the Year finalist for romantic suspense and an award winner in the Pacific Northwest Writers Literary Contest. Her suspense novel, Betrayal in the Badlands, earned a Romantic Times Reviewer’s Choice Award. Besides writing, she busies herself teaching third and fourth grade. Mostly, she loves to be home with her husband, two daughters, a dog with social anxiety problems, a chubby box turtle, and a feisty parakeet.
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Celebrate the release of Fetching Sweetness with Dana by entering to win the Sweetness Unleashed Prize Pack!
One grand prize winner will receive:
- A copy of Fetching Sweetness
- A $75 Visa cash card
- A library book necklace
- A dog-inspired insulated shopping tote
Enter today by clicking the icon below, but hurry! The giveaway ends on August 24. The winner will be announced August 25 on Dana’s blog.