Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Stay by Allie Larkin

Genre: General Fiction/Chick-lit
Copyright: 2010
Pages: 308
Book Source: Own audio

Synopsis: Savannah “Van” Leone has been in love with Peter Clarke ever since she literally fell head over heels in front of him on the first day of college. Now, six years later, instead of standing across from him at the altar, Van is standing behind her best friend Janie as maid of honor, trying to mask her heartache and guilt as Janie marries the only man she’s ever loved. Before Van’s mother died, she told Van never to let Peter go, but as the couple exchanges vows, Van wonders if her fairy-tale ending will ever come true.

After the wedding, Van drowns her sorrows in Kool-Aid-vodka cocktails and reruns of Rin Tin Tin, and does what any heartbroken woman in her situation would do: She impulsively buys a German Shepherd over the Internet. But the pocket-size puppy Van is expecting turns out to be a clumsy hundred-pound beast who only responds to commands in Slovak. Van is at the end of her rope...until she realizes that this quirky giant may be the only living being who will always be loyal to her, no matter what.

Van affectionately names her dog Joe, and together they work to mend the pieces of Van’s shattered heart. And it certainly doesn’t hurt that Joe’s vet is a rugged sweetheart with floppy blond hair and a winning smile. But when the newlyweds return from their honeymoon, Van is forced to decide just how much she’s willing to sacrifice in order to have everything she ever wanted — proving that sometimes life needs to get more complicated before it can get better.

I adored this book, it was an absolute hoot and one of my favourites of the year for the pure enjoyment factor! Van is messed up, her mother has died, the man she has loved for years marries her other best friend, she's lonely, miserable and has a fondness for Kool-Aid Vodka cocktails.

When Van over indulges in her beverage of choice, orders a puppy over the internet and awakens with the hangover from hell I was almost rolling on the floor laughing. When Van lets fly with some very unladylike profanity after being knocked into a pile of poop I was giggling like a loon while grocery shopping (and getting some very strange looks) but there's a whole lot more to this story than a much appreciated gigglefest.

In Stay we get an up-close-and-personal view of Van's dysfunctional relationships, losses, loves, friendships and the unconditional love and acceptance she receives from Joe, the new furry member of her family. I was rooting for Van the whole way through, I laughed (a lot) and cried (a little) and cheered as she healed.

Van could easily be the girl next door, or my best friend, or me for that matter, although I'm not a fan of Kool-Aid *snigger* but I do have first hand experience with buying a puppy to mend a broken heart and bring some much needed joy into a family. Larkin's characters are just so real, I know that sounds cliched but they truly are. Louis (Alex's elderly friend) is an absolute darling, I wanted him to be my quirky old friend and Ms Larkin where do I find a vet like Alex??

Have I conveyed just how much I loved Stay? If you like a genuine, touching story with laugh out loud moments then I urge you to pick this one up ... go on, you know you want to :)

PS. Allie's German Shepherd Argo is pictured on the cover of Stay (cool hey)
Visit Allie Larkin's website to find out more about this author and her work

This month on The Eclectic Reader you can win a copy of Entice by Carrie Jones, or The Distant Hours by Kate Morton or The Lost Saint by Bree Despain. Check this blog post for details. Open Internationally.


  1. I really liked this book - it was such a great surprise find! And I agree about relating to Van :-) Nice review!

  2. Sounds good :) And you sure seem to have enjoyed this book. Awesome review

  3. 'Rolling on the floor laughing'? I really need to read this book. I could use some good laughs.

    Merry Christmas to you and your family, Sheree!

  4. Definitely looks like a fun read! Great review!

  5. Couldn't agree more, brilliant book, so funny but also real! PS you are getting your reviews up so quick, I'm impressed!

  6. I love entertaining reads and this one has been on my radar screen!!

  7. Great review. This sounds like such a feel good read :)

  8. Awesome review and you made me want to read it too, also being an owner of a pup who I purchased a month after my mom and step dad died in a car accident.

  9. This cover tempts me every time I see it. Glad you liked it.


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