Tuesday, December 5, 2023

So THAT'S Where the Other Four Dogs Went!


TITLE: The Twelve Dogs of Christmas
AUTHOR: Susan Wiggs
PUBLISHER: William Morrow
PUBLISHING DATE: October 17, 2023
PAGES: 256   

FROM GOODREADS: Brenda Malloy wants nothing to do with Christmas ever again. Last year, Brenda and her husband rushed their beloved dog Tim to the emergency vet on Christmas eve. The good Tim survived after the vet cleared the obstruction--a pair of women’s lace undies. The bad the undies were not Brenda’s. 
A year after the breakup, Brenda has put her life back together. She’s trained for a marathon, is writing a children’s novel, and she’s found purpose and healing as a volunteer with a dog rescue organization in Houston, Texas. The rescue partners with a program in Avalon, New York--a small, snowy town deep in the Catskills. Now Brenda is arranging the transport of rescued dogs from Houston to Avalon—just in time for a merry Christmas with their forever families. 
Brenda’s friends worry about her driving a van two thousand miles with twelve dogs in crates, but she shrugs off their concern. How hard can it be? She knows the way, and she’s just looking to escape the Christmas overload for a while. But a blinding snowstorm, an escaped mutt, and a life-saving encounter with Adam Bellamy—a single dad and paramedic—means Brenda has to stay in Avalon longer than she planned. As she drops off each precious pup at their new homes, some of the comfort and joy of the season begins to creep up on Brenda despite her determination to avoid the holidays. Perhaps you can bring Christmas into your heart after all...if you have the right furry friends to guide the way. 

MY THOUGHTS:  When I first hauled this ARC, some of you might remember me mentioning that it was very off-putting that there were only eight dogs on the front.  Well, I grabbed a copy of this from the library recently and discovered the remaining four dogs are featured on the back.  It's the little things that make me happy.  Needless to say, this is the perfect Christmas novel for any animal lover and I'm so glad I decided to read it over my Thanksgiving break.

On Christmas Eve, Brenda and her husband have to rush their rescue dog, Tim, to the ER vet.  Tim lives (I was worried for a moment which shows you I didn't pay a lot of attention to the synopsis) but the doctor is able to remove a thong from Tim's digestive tract. Problem is that the thong doesn't belong to Brenda.  The book then moves forward a year and Brenda is rebuilding her life with Tim by her side.  However, she no longer looks forward to the holiday season.  Because of a cancellation, Brenda ends up accompanying her friend and fellow rescue worker with 12 dogs to the Catskills and delivering the dogs to their new homes.  But accidents do happen, Brenda gets stuck in Avalon, and Adam Bellamy, the paramedic who is assisting her with the dogs, is trying to best to provide some holiday spirit.

So this book was such a great way to lose myself for an afternoon snuggled beneath some blankets with a pup on my lap and one at my feet.  It was a great to see a female in the Scrooge role and I enjoyed seeing Adam trying to convince Brenda to partake in some Christmas activities.  Of course, there are also the dogs who are all main characters as well as it's great to see how they bring all the players in the novel together.  

I've never read this author before but will keep an eye open for any related titles in the future.  There was an element at the ending which definitely lends itself to a companion novel and I would love to spend more time in Avalon, especially around the holidays.



  1. I really enjoy this author and she does well developed characters. I just thought there should be more of the dogs in the storyline.


  2. I'm really looking forward to reading this one! It just sounds so cute...especially with those 12 dogs. :D

  3. Ok, I would never guess there was a thong involved in this story (just by looking at the cover) so I can see why you enjoyed it. Plus congrats on finding the other 4 dogs🤣