Friday, 1 July 2011

Must Be Love by Cathy Woodman

It must be love. What other reason could there be for city vet Maz's contentment with her new country life? The vet's practice where she's a partner with her best friend Emma is thriving, and so is her relationship with the gorgeous Alex Fox-Gifford.

But then circumstances force Emma to take a break from the practice, and Maz's life suddenly spirals out of control. What with working all hours trying to keep things going, fending off insults from Alex's parents, keeping one eye on the lusty locum - who's causing havoc amongst the village girls - and dealing with Emma's precarious mental state, it won't take much to upset the apple cart. So when she gets some unwelcome news, only time will tell whether Maz and Alex's love can withstand the fallout.

Now this is more like it! I was only tentatively keen on Woodman's first novel, Trust Me, I'm a Vet, but liked it well enough to pick up Must Be Love - and I'm very glad I did.

In this novel, Woodman successfully melded together the workings of a vet practice with the trials and tribulations of her heroine, Maz. I really believed in the events of this novel, and found myself completely invested in the characters. To the point where I almost hated Emma at times for her manner of hiding away from the world, but also feeling so very sorry for her.

The subplot of Drew and Shannon was also good fun - and I appreciated that once again Woodman concentrated on the development of her characters.

By far my favourite part of the novel - again - was the pet tales. Woodman brings real warmth and humour to these, and you can tell immediately that she has working knowledge of the situations she presents - from the dangerous dog, to the shy hedgehog, to the escape-artist parrot. If Woodman decided to do a non-fiction book in the nature of James Herriott, I would be first in line.

As it is, Woodman is turning into rather a skilled chick lit novellist, and I am eager to read further novels by her. In fact, I have dived instantly into The Sweetest Thing!

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