Carter Embree is a tough, exacting lawyer with little time for second-guessing. But he is tiring of perpetually being the bag guy and a recent case involving a poisoned dog has left him particularly unsettled. Carter has never been a pet guy so he doesn’t really understand how attached people get to their animals. This changes when a tiny puppy is thrust into his life. Almost overnight, Carter’s life is turned upside down and suddenly the only thing that matters to Carter is the little ball of fluff that invades his home.
Vet tech Sandy Corrigan isn’t quite sure what to make of the clueless lawyer who brings his new pup in one night. The man has no idea how to care for a dog, but his intentions are good. As the pup, now called Freckles, begins her life with Carter, Sandy finds himself drawn to the man. And with Freckles and Sandy by his side, Carter finally realizes he can embrace change and maybe, with a little help, he can end up being the good guy.
I’ve been a big fan of Amy Lane for years and while my personal favorites happen to be her angst-laden novels, she manages to make her shorter, lighter pieces just as enjoyable. Freckles is bound to be a hit with anyone who loves animals. And given that I have fur babies of my own, I was able to connect with this novel on a lot of levels.
Amy Lane is one of the few who has mastered the art of the shorter novel, in my opinion. She manages to give us a well-rounded story in Freckles with enough character and plot development for enjoyment. Freckles is certainly the star of the show, but there isn’t so much cuteness as to become overwhelming. Carter and Sandy are fairly developed and certainly work well as a couple. I would have preferred a bit more information regarding their pasts and families because there is something of an immediacy to their existence that doesn’t always mesh. But this is really a minor niggle and it doesn’t detract from the overall plot line and I doubt most readers will even consider it an issue.
One of the big reasons I enjoy Amy Lane’s work is that she tends to pay as much detail to her secondary cast as she does her primary and the same goes for Freckles. While the secondary characters aren’t complete entities, they are given much more detail and life than we normally find in either novellas or full-length novels. Lane does an excellent job of making readers and characters feel like natural extensions of the worlds she creates. It’s a talent that few authors possess, but that Lane manages to recreate in nearly all over her works.
Freckles is a light hearted and enjoyable story that covers a lot of ground for a shorter novel. The main characters are relatively well developed and while I think they could have used a bit of bolstering, they are far from lacking dimension. Overall this was a quick, fun read that nearly all readers will enjoy.