Hearts of Alaska, Book 1
From the publisher:
Young pups teach frozen hearts new tricks when a pack of rescue huskies inspire love and romance in a coastal Alaskan town fractured by feuding families.
Taylor Lipin has made it her life’s mission to leave her hometown and its ridiculous, century-old feud with the Porters behind. But when her sister needs help running the family inn, Taylor agrees to return to Helen, Alaska on a temporary, definitely not longer than two weeks, basis. Or so she thinks, until she’s quite literally swept off her feet and into enemy territory by three happy huskies and their drool-worthy owner, Dr. Josh Krane.
Though Josh didn’t grow up in Helen with the rest of his Porter cousins, he’s heard the stories: Porters rescue huskies. The Lipins are cat people. Keep to your pack. But Taylor is too tempting to give up–plus, his dogs love her.
As Taylor and Josh grow closer, tensions in the town escalate and the need for secrecy starts taking a toll. Soon they’ll need to decide whether their newfound love is just a summer fling or if they’ve found their forever home.
As soon as I finished reading the second book in this series (Paws and Prejudice) I sought out this book. It would have been better had I read this one first. Some series are meant to be read in order and I think this series works better that way.
First of all, the cover. The dogs are a major part of both stories, and I love that. The small town of Helen, Alaska has this century-old feud going on between the Lipin and Porter families. The history of the feud is shady, at best, but it supposedly started when one of the families tries to steal the other family’s dogs, and that was it. Porters are the dog people, and Lipins like cats. So cats and dogs!
But when Josh, a Porter, falls in love with Taylor, a Lipin, the families take sides and both are determined to break up the happy couple. They had a few weeks of peace by sneaking around, but once the families find out, all bets are off. Vandalism, threats, family sit-downs and more don’t deter the couple but the families will not stop. Until finally Josh is scared that Taylor could get seriously hurt, so he dumps her to protect her. Big mistake.
The characters, and there are a lot of them, come to life on the page and the setting is, well, small town Alaska and all that I love. Oh, and Josh is half Jewish. I’ve found it interesting to find Jews in Alaska when it seems like most (all) small town romances usually end up with a Christmas book at some point. I love those, but I like finding my people, even if it’s just one character in the story. It means a lot to me.
There are lots of laugh out loud moments here plus some steamy sex and packs of cute dogs, Huskies to be exact. Look at that cover! Completely irresistible, like this story. Can’t wait for the next book in the series (and I hope it’s Taylor’s sister Lydia’s happy ending next!)
7/2021 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch
HEART ON A LEASH by Alanna Martin. Berkley (April 27, 2021). ISBN: 978-0593198834. 368 pages.