Why is it that we always want what we can't have, or have we just
been programmed to think that we do? When it comes to dating, the
beginning of most relationships is more about successfully playing
the game than it is about finding the right player. Or at least
that's what Liv Elliot, a newly single British accountant, is told.
And she becomes so convinced that she takes a friend's advice for
getting and keeping a man's attention by following rules for what
he affectionately describes as "dog training for men."
DOG HANDLING, a novel by Clare Naylor is, quite simply, a quirky
story about one woman's misguided approach to dating. And, frankly,
who among us can't relate to that?
Forced into taking a fresh look at dating, sex, and love after
being dumped by her longtime sweetheart and fiancé, Liv
uncovers depths to her personality as well as her own abilities
that she never thought possible. Readers watch Liv's transformation
--- from understated and staid accountant in London to active
surfer and lingerie entrepreneur in Australia --- and want to see
With her third novel Naylor deftly sidesteps what could have been
--- and starts out as --- a trite romance novel and provides
readers with a fun story and ample fodder for lively dinner
conversation. For those whose dating lives are history, Liv's
attempts to find a mate --- or reunite with one --- will dredge up
fun (or funny) memories, while singles may find themselves taking
notes as they turn the pages.
A modern novel that is written in a lighthearted conversational
style, DOG HANDLING is a good summer read.
- -- Reviewed by Heather Grimshaw, a freelance
writer and book reviewer who specializes in literary news as well
as health and wellness writing.