Thursday, May 23, 2013

That Dog Won't Hunt by Brandilyn Collins

About the Book:

Meet the Dearings, a crazy, loving, boisterous family in small-town Mississippi. There's mom and dad, three daughters and their families, and the youngest--twenty-five-year-old Ben. Oh, and the family dog, a Yorkie who thinks she's royalty.

"This one's perfect," Ben says about his new fiancée, Christina, when he brings her home for a family reunion. Ben is just sure everyone will love Christina, and she'll fit right in.

He always did tend to wear rose-colored glasses.

Christina loves Ben but secretly fears their relationship will never work. They've only known each other ten weeks. She hasn't told him about her horrific past as an only child--the beatings, the neglect, and verbal abuse. Christina doesn't know how to trust or be honest about her feelings. Being thrust into the middle of a tight-knit family like the Dearings is sure to send her over the edge.

With poignancy and humor, That Dog Won't Hunt explores the complexities of relationships and the inner strength needed to overcome a difficult childhood. The Dearings are no perfect family, but they know how to love--if only Christina will accept it.

My Thoughts:

I haven't laughed out loud while reading in a long, long time...but I couldn't help myself with this one!  Brandilyn Collins is famous for her 'Seatbelt Suspense', but she's written a welcome surprise with "That Dog Won't Hunt".

A contemporary novel, "That Dog Won't Hunt" introduces readers to the fictional Dearing family: Syton (Sy), the father, and Ruth, America's new favorite mom (that's what I think anyhow; sisters Sarah, Maddy and Jess--and little brother Ben.

The entire family is together to meet Ben's new fiance Christina.  What no one is aware of could crash the meal faster than Alex dropping her pie plate.  Christina has a dark past that has her holding the Dearings at arm's length, and doing her best to be perfect.

Of course, no one can be perfect, no matter what the circumstances, and a family meal at the Dearings is most definitely not the most ideal setting to perfection.  Laughter, traditions (one between Sy and Ruth is especially heart melting) and chaos ensue whenever the family gets together.

The pooch that graces the cover is Miss Penny, and she herself is quite a character.  Toss in a few kids with personality in spades, and you get a side splitting reading experience you won't want to miss.

I have so much I could tell you about this book, but each new discovery is a treasure in itself, and I don't want to spoil it for you.  Let me just say I'm so thankful Brandilyn took a break from suspense and mayhem to create this wonderful cast of characters and a fantastic story.

But who in their right mind calls their son Pogey??  Or Tamel?  It must be a Southern thing!  No matter the name, each character is memorable, unique and powerfully written.  I can hardly wait until the next Dearing family novel--it's guaranteed to be a hoot.

Hey, that could be a new tag line for Brandilyn's new fiction--Hootin' Good Reads!  Seriously, at times I laughed so hard I had tears rolling.  Oh, and be warned: real tears will roll at some point because along with the laughter you'll find lots of heart.

I downloaded my own digital copy of "That Dog Won't Hunt" because I had to have it, and it was some of the best money I've spent on reading all year.  You can find the book on or any book store.

"That Dog Won't Hunt" is highly, highly, highly recommended.  Best New Series of 2013.

Happy Reading!



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