Guest post: Beth Kendrick
Beth Kendrick’s new book, The Lucky Matchmaking Dog Service, was published on May 1, and I think it sounds like loads of fun. I’m thrilled to welcome her here today to share a little of her inspiration with us.
Basically, this book is a big, slobber-drenched love letter to bad dogs and the women who can’t resist them. The heroine, Lara Madigan, has followed her heart into the world of dog rescue, and feels that she’s disappointed everyone along the way, especially her rich, image-obsessed mother. Lara sees dogs as more than pets—they’re lifelines for the right owners. And she’s generous to a fault. She’ll drop everything to help a stray mutt off the street, but she doesn’t consider herself worthy of the same unconditional devotion. The story follows Lara as she discovers that she is enough, she is on the right path, and she is beautiful from the inside out…even if she spends more time grooming her Labrador than she does on herself!
While working on the first draft of this book, I attended several local dog shows (both agility and “conformation” shows, which are the beauty pageants of the dog world). I interviewed trainers, handlers, and rescue volunteers. And since the storyline is positively jam-packed with pups, I included lots of real-life dogs belonging to family members, friends, and my Facebook fans.
My first rescue dog, Murphy, was a scruffy little terrier (think a bleach-blond Benji) who’d been found wandering the streets of south Los Angeles. We had no idea when we adopted him that his entire pelvis had been shattered—probably the result of a car hitting him—because he didn’t limp at all. He was as tough as he was adorable, and he never betrayed the slightest vulnerability…unless, of course, he wanted something from you.
At home, his injury remained undetectable to the naked eye. When we were out and about, however, and strangers exclaimed over how cute he was, Murphy would start hobbling around with an exaggerated limp and the eyes of a martyred saint. His new acquaintances would shower him with affection and whatever food they happened to have on them, and he would accept all this with a thumping tail stub and a brave show of stoicism. Then the suckers would continue on their way and Murphy would resume strutting along like Giselle on the catwalk.
He was a con artist and a punk, but he was my true canine soulmate. He has a cameo in “The Lucky Dog Matchmaking Service”, actually. Very first chapter! This book was truly a labor of love, and it’s a privilege to share it with readers who adore dogs as much as I do.
After growing up with a purebred Bernese Mountain dog, Beth Kendrick fell in love with a scruffy stray terrier named Murphy and has been a sucker for rescue dogs ever since. She lives in Arizona with her family and two rambunctious red mutts named Roxie and Friday. Despite owning three vacuum cleaners, she is constantly covered in dog hair.