Lauren Vancouver, the lead of a no-kill animal shelter HotRescues, which is north of Los Angeles. She helps rescue four beagle puppies from a puppy mill, and gets into an argument with one of the mill's' employees. When he is found dead at HotRescues after threatening her, she is the police's top suspect. She takes it upon herself to clear her name and to find the real killer before anyone else gets hurt.
This was a lot of fun to read. I needed something quick and easy, and this book has been sitting on my shelves for about four years now so I decided to pick it up. As a huge animal lover, but especially dog lover, the idea of a series of pet rescue mysteries sounded like a lot of fun and this first book didn't disappoint.
The characters were great. I really liked Lauren, who is an older woman character who has two kids in college. I liked that she was witty and independent. There wasn't a moment while reading the book I thought her independence was forced. I had no doubt in my mind she could take care of herself and figure out what happened. The other characters don't have a lot of depth to them because there is a good chunk of them (mostly the HotRescue workers) but I enjoyed what we got so far. There is a slow burning romance happening, which I think worked well for the story.
The plot was a lot of fun, but at times could be slow. If I didn't have a deadline to finish this book (to prepare for BookTube-A-Thon) I may have put this book down a few times. I thought the mystery itself was a lot of fun, and although I figured out the killer, I was pleasantly surprised of how invested I was in the story. I was really invested and excited to get to the end of the mystery. I think if you need a quick and fun older pet themed older Veronica Mars type story then I recommend it. I think this series could be such a fun television show.
The writing itself was great. Like I said, things got a little slow, but everything else worked for me. The dialogue, setting, descriptions were all good and had me interested for more. I don't read many mysteries, but I was happy with the writing. It didn't blow me away or have me highlighting passages but it definitely had me flipping pages wanting to know more.
Overall I am really happy I finally picked up this book. I already have the next ones on my wishlist and I cannot wait to buy them so I can continue the series. Especially since there's one about poodles, and as a poodle owner and lover I am beyond excited. My fiancé actually saw me reading this book and picked up another book for me at the library titled A Pedigree to Die For by Laurien Berenson that has a poodle on the cover. I plan on reading that one after BookTube-A-Thon! I recommend this to anyone in the mood for a fun mystery, or any animal/dog lovers. If you love dogs, you'll love Lauren Vancouver.