Book Reviews

How Much is That Doggie In The Window? by Barry Lowe at Lydian Press

Genre Gay / Contemporary / Romance
Reviewed by Serena Yates on 12-May-2014

Book Blurb

How can anyone resist those eyes?

Leon has a way with animals as well as a way to use them to help ease the suffering of those with long-term illness or injury. He’s loved by patients and nurses alike until, that is, he’s asked to drop in on reclusive old codger, Ralph Esseltine, who has a reputation of reducing health workers to tears. Instead of tears, Esseltine goads the placid Leon to anger by kicking the frisky puppy Leon has brought along as therapy. Expecting the worst, Leon submits his resignation only to discover that Esseltine has requested he visit again. What sort of revenge does the old recluse have in mind? And what of Esseltine’s estranged grandson and his obnoxious boyfriend who turn up to count the family silver?


Book Review

Therapy animals can be a great help in improving the health and well-being of long-term patients of all ages. One thing they are no match for – or are they? – is an excessive degree of aggression and sheer orneriness. Then again… miracles do sometimes happen… This is a great story, funny, hot, and thought provoking all at once about Leon, a vet who visits a local hospital with his menagerie of pets on the weekends, and the old curmudgeon who is so rich he owns half the town but doesn’t have a single friend. Oh, and the old man’s gorgeous grandson Rohan, can’t forget him!

Leon is a great guy. He is patient, caring, loves animals, and tries to be helpful wherever he can. One thing he is not is a doormat, and that is what gets him into trouble with old Mr. Esseltine. The man is super rich, but lives on his own and hates people. Probably because they took advantage of him, but now he is so bitter and miserly he is worse than Scrooge. Really! Leon only tries to help, but when Esseltine kicks not one but both puppies meant as temporary companions, Leon loses it and gets physical. He regrets it deeply, but Esseltine has decided on his punishment already: a year’s “community service” to him personally.

What neither man had counted on is the gradually developing friendship between them. I loved watching both of them get to know each other, Leon being his incorrigibly nice self, and Esseltine slowly unthawing. And when his grandson, Rohan, turns up? Things get very hot, very quickly. Unfortunately Rohan has brought a “friend” – and he is a piece of work as bad as the “original” Mr. Esseltine. Sparks fly for a variety of reasons and in all directions, and I have to say I was thoroughly entertained.

If you like stories about fascinating characters and their dogs (after all, who can resist a puppy?), if you enjoy reading about bad-tempered (or worse) men who are reformed and brought back into society’s folds by nice men who cannot resist a challenge, and if you’re looking for a read with lots of story and some hot loving once everyone sorts out their issues, then you will probably like this sweet novella.





DISCLAIMER: Books reviewed on this site were usually provided at no cost by the publisher or author. This book has been purchased by the reviewer.

Additional Information

Format ebook
Length Novella, 29500 words
Heat Level
Publication Date 18-April-2014
Price $3.99 ebook
Buy Link