Sunday, November 3, 2013

Sunday Salon: Rescue Ben and Paw Prints at Owl Cottage seems fall is here and the holidays will be upon us before we know it. Today we celebrate the first Sunday Salon of November and discuss what new books we’ve found.

I seem to be having a pet theme going on this weekend, so in keeping with that I have two animal-related books to share with you.

Find a comfort chair, make sure your cup of coffee (tea or hot chocolate) is filled to the brim, and let’s talk books and animals. I have a delightful book for dog lovers and a charming book for cat lovers.

RESCUE BEN by R. B. Smith

Rescue Ben coverWhen it comes to man’s best friend, true stories of amazing acts have been told about these four-legged beauties.

Author R. B. Smith taps into some of these wondrous acts in her fiction release, RESCUE BEN. This is an amazing tale of one canine’s journey to be reunited with his human family. If you are hesitant to read about an animal’s travels for fear of a sad ending, I will say the book ends with Ben alive and quite happy.

Life was good for Ben who had lived with his human family since he was a puppy. They were all moving to a new home when the unthinkable happened. Ben got separated from his family because of a cat. He had to chase it, there was no choice. But when he returned, his family was gone.

Determined to find his family, Ben sets out on a journey that will prove just how brave, strong, loving and caring he is. Along the way he encounters a number of humans whose lives he changes. This is an extraordinary tale of how a dog’s journey impacted not only his life, but many human lives he met along the way.

The story moves at a steady pace pulling you deeper into Ben’s search. Smith has developed realistic characters and given Ben a voice dog lovers will appreciate. The settings are vivid giving you a good sense of being there as the story unfolds.

While there may be some tear-shedding moments, the book is light-hearted and inspiring. The connection animal lovers share with their four-legged friends is beautifully brought to life in this story.

Whether you are an animal lover or not, RESCUE BEN will be an enjoyable read. It’s filled with suspense, mystery, compassion and caring. Don’t be surprised if you feel the need to hug her dog(s) a little more after reading this tantalizing adventure.

For more on Ben, check out, as well as, and on Twitter at @RescueBenBook.

Rescue Ben by R.B. Smith, Abbott Press, @2013, ISBN: 978-1458208606, Paperback, 478 Pages 

FTC Full Disclosure - This book was sent to me by the author’s publicist in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.

Paw Prints coverIf you have ever shared your life with a cat, then PAW PRINTS AT OWL COTTAGE is a must read.

This is the delightful memoir of Denis O’Connor and his devotion to four wondrous Maine Coon cats who shared his life. Each cat, in its own special way, help the author recover from the loss of his beloved cat, Toby Jug.

O’Connor and his wife, Catherine, return to Owl Cottage where he had once lived with Toby Jug. While restoring the cottage, O’Connor was filled with memories of his faithful cat. At the suggestion of his wife, O’Connor decides to get another cat to help fill the void. Soon Pablo comes to live with them followed by Carlos, Luis and Max.

O’Connor tells how each kitten created their own space in his life, as well as his heart. He tells of their adventures and the impact they made in his life.

From a cat lover’s perspective, there will be tears of sorrow and joy found throughout this book. O’Connor beautifully describes how the felines became a part of his family and much more than just pets. His soulful expressions of loss, as well as the jubilation of day-to-day living will ring true for animal lovers, especially those caring for cats. 

While you may need a box of tissue handy when reading this, you’ll also find yourself laughing at the cats’ antics. Set against the wilds of the Northumbrian coast, PAW PRINTS AT OWL COTTAGE is a story of warmth and love. It’s an amusing and tender look at how cats and humans connect.

Author Denis O’Connor can be found on Goodreads at

Paw Prints at Owl Cottage: A Memoir by Denis O’Connor, Thomas Dunne Books, @2013, ISBN: 978-0312577070, Hardcover, 240 Pages 

FTC Full Disclosure - This book was sent to me by the author’s publicist in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.

Thanks so much for stopping by today. Are you an animal lover? Either (or both) of these delightful tales would make great gifts this holiday season.


  1. I'm glad you mentioned Rescue Ben has a happy ending. I'm always dubious about stories with animals because they can break your heart. My pets are a big part of our family and Ben looks very much like my son's dog.

  2. Mason - Animals are such important parts of our lives! I like it very much that you've focused on them today, and those sound like great stories.


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