Review: About a Dog by Jenn McKinlay

Review: About a Dog by Jenn McKinlay
About a Dog

One StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star

Series: #1 Bluff Point
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Published by Berkley
Released on May 30, 2017
Pages: 320
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher

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Fall in love with a little help from man's best friend in New York Times bestselling author Jenn McKinlay's contemporary romance debut.

Mackenzie "Mac" Harris fled her hometown of Bluff Point, Maine, after being left at the altar--and seeking solace in the arms of her best friend's off-limits brother. Now, seven years later, she's back to attend her best friend's wedding--safe, or so she thinks, from the mistakes of her youth.

But Gavin Tolliver has never forgotten the woman who has always held his heart. And when Mac rescues a stray puppy named Tulip, only Gavin, the town's veterinarian, can help. With a little assistance from Tulip, Gavin vows to make Mac realize that their feelings are more than just puppy love...

The Delight

Coming back for the best friend’s wedding, fighting the attraction for the best friend’s younger brother, an adorable dog needing a home, and a small town Maine in summer.  I was all set to be doggone over About a Dog.


About a Dog is the opening romance in a new series set in a quaint small town in Maine and offers up a circle of friends and some quirky old aunts to round out the cast.  The overall setting and tone of the story have vast appeal and it definitely gave off a sweet, light summer romance vibe.  It’s gently-paced which suited the story though the ending came on quick after the steady lead-up.

The cast of characters hanging out together having fun surrounding the events leading up to a wedding really drew me in.  I can see some more potential series romances among the group.

The hero, Gavin, is a swoonworthy good guy that is nearly too good to be true.  He’s a veterinarian and animal lover (and they love him back), mixes the boy next door looks with some sizzle that has all the ladies looking twice, he’s steady and straight arrow.  And he’s been crushing on Mac since he was a kid and hasn’t lost the deeper feelings since he became an adult.

The heroine, Mac, on the other hand was a mite problematic for me.  She has this tendency to lie about a whole lot of things and excuses it with the ‘it’s complicated and it’s for everyone’s own good’ reasoning (particularly her own because she lies most of all to herself).  The part I was iffy on were the lies about the absent boyfriend on a break thing while she was hanging with Gavin and, tough or not, she should have come clean about everything because these people are her longest and closest friends.

Special mention the adorable Tulip the puppy for stealing my heart and helping the romance along.

The end led right where I wanted it too, but I could have used just a little more time once things resolved to get a better picture of what came next for the Gavin and Mac.

All in all, it was a good start to a new series that I think lovers of contemporary small town romance and a solid cast of friend characters would probably enjoy.

My thanks to Penguin-Random House for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.



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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.


  1. I really enjoyed this one. I completely understand what you are talking about in regards to Mac. Gavin was a little too good to be true but fun to read about. Tulip melted my heart. Great review!

    1. Yes, that’s it exactly. A few niggles, but overall a cute story and I definitely want to get the friends’ stories particularly the next pair. They were great fun.

  2. What’s interesting about this book (for me,) is that while I found it a mediocre read, I also haven’t been able to stop thinking about it. I thought the author did a fantastic job writing a small town without making everyone too nosy for their own good. LOL But like you, I had issues with the heroine. Gavin on the other hand…swoon!

    Great review. 🙂

  3. I had a hard time with Mac, too! She endlessly got on my nerves because her reason for pushing Gavin away seemed completely ridiculous! I was also annoyed by her lying. You liked this one more than I did, but I wonder if I shouldn’t give the author another chance with the next installment. Wonderful review, Sophia! 🙂

    1. Yeah, the lying was not cool, just as her pushing away issues, but I did love the aunts and the friends, Gavin, and Tulip. Not sure I’ll continue, but I did enjoy the next couple as part of the friends group so I’m still deciding.

      Thanks, Rachel! 🙂