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Ratings and Book Reviews ()

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  • First in a fantastic new series

    Ally Winter has returned home to Willow Bluff after a failed engagement and joint business venture. Rather than having a partner she doesn’t trust this time around, she purchases the local veterinary clinic and finds business is slow. Rather than wallow in pity, Ally spends time with her grandfather and ends up helping him sleuth when a local attorney is murdered. Ally’s old high school crush is now a detective and is assigned to the case. Along with butting into Noah’s investigation with Gramps, Ally finds herself taking care of the dead man’s dog. While deadman tell no lies, neither do their dogs, especially when Roxy seems to sense the killer is near. Now it’s a race to find the killer before the killer finds Ally and Roxy and puts them down once and for all.

The first in a new series, Dogged by Death gets things off in the right direction. With plenty of animals, red herrings and a mutual attraction, it looks like Laura Scott will have plenty to write about for many books to come. I’m looking forward to more in this series.

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  • Good start to a new cozy series!

    Dogged by Death by Laura Scott is a great start to the Furry Friends Mysteries! Ally, Gramps and the three widows are wonderfully developed characters, and it was so much fun reading about Ally and Gramps investigating, since they are the perfect compliment to each other. And the three widows add some levity to the story, especially with how they all compete with each other to get in Gramps and Ally’s good graces. And the little girl who kept bringing Ally injured animals was adorable. There were two things that stood out and I don’t want to say annoyed me, exactly, but paused my reading because it was mentioned so much. The first was Ruby growling when a certain person seemed to be around. And while Ally noticed it and thought about it, she kept pushing off really investigating it. I don’t know how Laura Scott could have handled it differently because it was essential to the story, but there was just something there. And I know all the protagonists who own businesses often leave them to solve the crime, but I find it really unlikely that a vet would be leaving the business (especially a new one) as much as she did, even if she didn’t have a lot of appointments in the books. I know our vet’s office is always booked and there are always emergencies, so this also stood out. I think that if she had an answering service or if it was mentioned that the phones could be forwarded to her phone, it would have been an easy fix. I don’t want to discourage you from reading the series because it really is very good, but with how many cozies I read these just felt like issues that could have been handled better. Already looking forward to book two in the Furry Friends Mysteries!

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  • Fun!

    small-business, small-town, Wisconsin, veterinarian, law-enforcement, murder, murder-investigation, amateur-sleuth, pets, family, situational-humor***** Have to admit that I'm pleased to see more cozies set in the Upper Midwest (where I live). This fun thing is about a thirtyish veterinarian who was swindled by her fiance/business partner and has returned to the small town where she grew up and her grandfather is residing in a small assisted living home. He is addicted to crime stories in books and TV, so when she comes across the body of the man who hired her dog walking services he gets busy investigating. Much to the irritation of the local law who was known to her in high school. Lots of situational humor and beloved pets. Loved it! I requested and received a free temporary ebook copy from Crooked Lane Books via NetGalley. Thank you!

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  • Fabulous & Fun

    I was happy to dive into Dogged by Death, the début of the Furry Friends Mystery series set in Willow Bluff, Wisconsin, featuring veterinarian, Ally Winter. I got to meet Ally who has recently had a challenging time, losing her fiancé, Tim Mathai, and her co-owned vets practice. Protagonist Ally had been living in Madison but moved back to Willow Bluff. Her granddad, Oscar has had surgery and needs some aftercare, so Ally has stepped in. Ally is in the process of building up her new practice, Furry Friends Veterinary Clinic in Willow Bluff only this time she will be its sole owner. Ally is concerned about the lack of clients for her business, but although she has a bit of spare time on her hands she turns down the chance to knit or play cribbage with her granddad and the Willow Bluff Widows (a small group of women who constantly vie for Oscar's attention). Ally returns to the vet clinic and finds Marty Shawlin, a lawyer waiting for her along with boxer dog Roxy. Marty wants Ally to do a spot of dog walking but when she arrives at his place the next day she is greeted by Roxy and a terrible smell, which turns out to be Marty, dead with his head bashed in. This was an excellent, absorbing cozy mystery. Ally and her chirpy granddad, in particular, were great characters and excellent in their respective roles and of course, Roxy deserves a mention. With its injections of humour and splashes of romance, I enjoyed my time trying to solve the crime alongside Ally right up until the finale. I will be watching out for book two and look forward to spending more time with Ally, Oscar and the Willow Bluff Widows in Wisconsin. I received a complimentary copy of this novel at my request from Crooked Lane Books via NetGalley. This review is my own unbiased opinion.

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  • Debut of A Furry Friends Mystery series

    Dogged by Death by Laura Scott has Ally Winter moving to Willow Bluff, Wisconsin to be near her grandfather, Oscar after some big upheavals in her life. Ally buys out a local veterinary practice and settles into her new life. Ally is hired by Marty Shawlin to walk his dog, Roxy. She arrives the first day to find Roxy barking frantically and Marty dead on the floor. Detective Noah Jorgensen, Ally’s old high school crush, is on the case. Gramps, a true crime junkie, is eager to do some investigating of his own with help from Ally, of course (he has trouble getting around since his hip replacement surgery). The killer is not playing games and tries to deter Ally. Gramps is even more determined to find the guilty party. Dogged by Death is the debut of A Furry Friends Mystery series. I enjoyed this entertaining new cozy mystery. I laughed often while reading it. Ally Winter is a solid protagonist and I just love Gramps. He is a hoot. Roxy, Marty Shawlin’s dog, is smart and such a sweetie. The secondary characters are a great addition. The Willow Bluff Widows who live with Gramps at Willow Bluff Legacy House, an assisted living facility, nicely round out the cast along with Noah Jorgensen. I am glad the author took the time to establish the characters (characters can make or break a series). The mystery was fun to follow thanks to Gramps and Ally. I did feel that we really do not get to know the suspects. I understand why they are suspects, but the emotions were lacking. Readers should have no problem solving the whodunit before the reveal. There is repetition of case details and I wish the whodunit had been more of a challenge. I love how Ally and Gramps would “share” their information with Noah. Noah was always finding them in compromising situations. He has a facial twitch that was getting out of control by the end of the investigation (he found Gramps to be a challenge). Dogged by Death moved along at a quick pace with good dialogue and plenty of humor. I am looking forward to Tailing Trouble when it comes out next year. Dogged by Death is a tail wager with a septuagenarian sleuth, a benevolent veterinarian, willing widows, a bright boxer, an enduring detective, and a cruel killer.

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