Sunday 1 October 2023

Winter at the Dog and Duck by Jill Steeples


Ellie Browne has left behind her high-flying job in London to return to the charming Buckinghamshire village of Little Leyton.

Working shifts at the Dog and Duck pub and running her own doggy-daycare business, Ellie's looking for a simpler way of life in this idyllic English setting.

But Little Leyton's landscape is changing: Johnny Tay, Ellie's ex, wants to pick up where they left off; sultry property developer Max Golding has moved into the village and is ruffling feathers; and rumour has it that the pub, which holds a special place in Ellie's heart, might be sold. Suddenly, life's looking a whole lot more complicated.... Can Ellie overcome all the challenges to finally find her one true love?

A perfect feel-good romantic novel to curl up with. This story of new beginnings, love and friendship is perfect for fans of Jenny Colgan and Lucy Diamond.


This is my first winter-themed read of the season but Christmas isn't really a feature until the end of the book. 
This is an easy, relaxing read with a festive backdrop. It's pleasant but not overly exciting. 
I was rooting for Ellie and Max from the beginning. I liked how their friendship developed from their first humorous encounter. Their romance was a slow burn as they were both in relationships for the book's first half, and it will be interesting to see how they progress with the series.
I liked the two main characters but, Ellie had the annoying tendency to jump to conclusions. Max was not a good communicator and there seemed to be a never-ending cycle of Max doing or not telling Ellie something and her ignoring him for days and weeks thereafter.

The townspeople, cute dogs and a lovely setting contributed to making this a warm, lighthearted read.

Check out this four-book series on Amazon

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