Published by Sourcebooks Casablanca on July 1st 2017
Purchase: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo
When Craig Williams draws the short straw and has to take his daughter’s adorable new puppy to a shelter after the holidays, it’s just another painful episode in the fall-out of a miserable divorce. He needs to pick up the pieces of his life, and, after a fiery confrontation with Megan Anderson, the young woman running the shelter, he wants to put the whole episode behind him. However, when he keeps finding new ways to reconnect with her, he realizes Megan’s compassionate and caring nature just might be the perfect salve for his broken heart.
Chances are you’ve been drawn to this book because you enjoy second chance love stories, whether they’re about animals, people, or both. It’s my hope you fall in love with the dynamic characters, both two and four footed, in A New Leash on Love as much as I have.
Writing this book enabled me to blend together two of my favorite things, a love of animals and a good romance. I’ve been an animal lover ever since I can remember. When I was 13, I began volunteering with a friend at a local rescue shelter. I’ve never forgotten the remarkable dedication of the people working and volunteering at shelters, helping to ensure surrendered animals get care and comfort while waiting for forever homes.
As I mentioned, I’m also a sucker for a good love story. I soak them up in both film and literature. I’m an eclectic reader and read a blend of romance, contemporary fiction, and nonfiction. I get the most enjoyment from books with love stories that are powerful enough I become convinced the world would be a sorrier place if the main characters hadn’t gotten together. I’ve read Pride and Prejudice three times, and most other Jane Austen novels at least once. I am awed by her accomplishments. Jane Austen wrote stories that have survived over two centuries and are still among so many people’s favorite novels. And of course, I enjoy reading the contemporary masters of romance as well. I’m also drawn to unique and quirky love stories like the one portrayed in The Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind that leave me thinking about them for a long time afterwards. The love story featured in A New Leash on Love is one I hope you’ll cheer for, laugh with, and walk away from reading believing all is just as it should be.
To tell you a bit more about me personally, I’m a Saint Louis resident and native who has also lived in Georgia and Michigan. I’m the mom of two amazing teenagers. Being an integral part of their life journeys has been a profound experience. I try not to pass a single day without giving thanks for all the blessings in my world, and these remarkable young adults always top that list. Coming in a close second are my family’s two rescue dogs and willful Maine Coon cat. I’ve posted pictures and shared my dogs’ rescue stories on my website, authordebbieburns.com.
Like their human counterparts, the animals we share our homes with have personalities of their own. Our family’s trio of pets are no exception. To paraphrase Roger Caras, dogs (and cats) aren’t our whole lives, but they make our lives whole. There are times when I’m not excited to wake up before dawn to make sure the dogs have a good walk before I head out for the day, and times when I cringe at vet bill statements. However, when you strip away the investment of training, time, and money, you’re left with a companion who thinks you’re more awesome than a bowlful of gravy. And if you let it in, you’ll feel that same kind of unmasked adoration right back. If you ask me, that’s what it’s all about.
~~Review by Evelyn~~
A NEW LEASH ON LOVE, the first contemporary romance by Debbie Burns, is also the kick-off novel for a new series, Rescue Me. This delightful five star read takes us inside the world of an animal shelter, and while I think anyone will be hooked on this well written story, it will especially appeal to animal lovers.
Megan Anderson, the hard-working director of a non-profit animal shelter, rejoices when she finds new forever homes for any of the many animals than come through her shelter. It’s a far more difficult for her when she has to rescue animals from horrible situations, but she does it all with a great deal of love and compassion.
Very successful business owner Craig Williams has been watching his once ideal life come apart at the seams. Recently divorced, he finds himself with the unpleasant task of taking his family’s purebred lab puppy to the shelter because he no longer fits into their lives. The initial meeting between Craig and Megan becomes very confrontational, but as their paths continue to cross, there is no denying that there is a special connection between them. Can they overcome the age difference and all the hidden baggage they are both carrying?
The characters in A NEW LEASH ON LOVE are well-written and complex. Megan’s passion for animals immediately endears her to readers, and as her painful past is slowly revealed, she becomes very real. Craig is almost too perfect to be real. It was hard, at first, to show much sympathy for this wealthy, good looking man. I found myself in tears many times, however, as we learn more about him. It would be hard not to fall in love with him as he struggles to help his kids put their lives back together after an unspeakable tragedy, something he hasn’t even been able to do for himself. His children, especially young teen Sophie, are very believable and loveable. I wanted to give them all a hug and tell them that everything was going to be all right.
The story is fast paced, and has many unique twists that I wasn’t expecting. I especially love that the animal shelter and it’s many residents play such an important part of this story. Our home has been the forever home for countless adoptees, and I can’t help but feel that there will be many more homeless animals finding their forever homes as readers find themselves drawn to their local shelters after reading this book. At least I hope so!
This is a great first novel for a new author, and I can’t wait to read the next book in the series!
I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.