Puppies can destroy your house and teach you to love at the same time.
Tanner Hill is better at communicating with dogs than women. That might be why he hasn’t had a second date in over two years. He’s also been extremely busy with his kennel which has become a premier training facility, specializing in supplying dogs to veterans suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.
But there is this psychologist he can’t get out of his head, or his heart.
Dr. Bailey Conrad would never allow the loss of half her right leg to an IED in Iraq to stop her. Every day at the VA hospital she sees psychiatric patients who have lost so much more to the war effort. It’s her goal in life to help as many vets as possible to find their ‘new normal’, because she knows firsthand, it’s the internal scars that can be the most difficult to heal.
Noel’s Puppy Power is a standalone novella in the Black Swan series that focuses on active duty women and the men who dare to love a woman warrior. If you like the military romance books by Susan Stoker and Elle James, you’ll enjoy this sweet Christmas story.
I really loved the opening of this story. A perfect introduction to our main characters. Tanner you may remember from Unrelenting Love since he trained both Damnit and his owners. He trains service dogs for veterans and Apollo and Chrys are his mating pair. Apollo has provided him with several male service dogs and it looks like this latest birthing will be more of the same.
We meet Bailey while Chrys is giving birth. She’s on her way to meet up with her military friends, but stops by with information for Tanner on the latest Vets approved for his dogs. She is thrilled to be involved in the birthing process of these new pups. Of course Case, Tanner’s friend and vet has to show up just as things were about to get interesting.
However, his arrival leads into one of my favorite scenes as Chrys gives birth to her sixth pup.
Chrys was tired. She’d been at this for hours.“You can do this,” Bailey reassured the puffing dog.As though believing the words, Chrys sucked in a deep breath. When she moaned, Bailey looked to Case for help, but he was smiling, staring at the lifted tail.
“Good girl, just a little more.” Case applied pressure to the pelvic area. “One more.”
In the dog’s next breath, Tanner exclaimed, “Yes. She did it.”
Chrys exhaled and laid her head down.
“Tanner, throw me that towel.” Case nodded to the cloth next to him. “Let’s help her out a little. I’m not sure she has it in her right now to tend to this little one.” Together the two men dealt with the mess of the newborn puppy.
The high-pitched tiny noise shocked Bailey. Her gaze flew to the men and the tiny squirming bundle in their huge hands. Deep laughs filed the lobby.
“Well, aren’t you a feisty one?” Case said to the pup. It had an angry look on its tiny face, that couldn’t be any bigger than a quarter. It yapped again, this time louder. Bailey and the two men laughed. Her heart warmed at the delightful sound of the adorable new, tiny animal.
“Well, let’s see what we have here.” Case rolled the new life over and rubbed the towel on its belly. “Well, I’ll be.”
“Wow. It’s a girl.” Tanner rubbed the hair on Apollo’s head. “Congratulations on your first daughter.”
A thrill welled inside Bailey. She’d been there. Watching and comforting the mother had been a huge delight, but to be there for a first, filled her to overflowing joy.
Tanner’s smile was ear to ear. “You must be good luck, Bailey. Why don’t you do the honors and name her?”
Bailey’s mind went instantly blank. She couldn’t think of a name. Sure, she had lots of girlfriends, but it didn’t seem fair to use one of those. The others would need dogs named after them, too, and at the lack of female pups around there, it would take a lifetime. Tanner often waited to name the puppies. He liked their personality to dictate the name.
“Oh, I don’t know if I could.”
“Sure you can,” Case encouraged. “I can see the gears grinding in that pretty head of yours.”
Bailey’s phone started to play the “The First Noel”. It was her military friends checking to be sure she was still coming. The words ran through the back of her mind, silently singing along to the tune she’d heard three times already that day. She smiled. “Noel. She’s the first Noel.”
“Works for me.” Case thrust the towel and Noel toward her.
“Say hello to her, doc. I’ve got to check Chrys.”
Bailey took the precious little life into her cupped hands. She ran her thumb over the back that seemed to be in constant motion. “Welcome to the world, Noel.” She showed the mother her newest arrival and allowed her to lick, just as Tanner had instructed earlier. Then, she placed the smallest of the litter in the middle, hoping her brothers would keep her warm.
KaLyn Cooper. Noel’s Puppy Power (Kindle Locations 220-245).
Love is born in those few minutes and not just between Bailey and Noel. Tanner definitely has more than a professional interest in Bailey. Proving it as he escorts Bailey to her car by asking , or was he telling her she is his date for Case’s New Year’s Party.
With Bailey training for the Paralympic Team and Tanner going back to school they have difficulty coming together. Once they do, it is both an emotional and sensual explosion. Fan’s self, and there is no sex in this book!
We also see many puppy antics that will make you giggle just like I did.
KaLyn makes you feel everything her characters are going through and this book is emotional with highs and lows. There is a lot of information hidden in it about PTSD and Veteran Suicide. Rough topics that need to be brought out in any forum we can get them in. This book inspires a big Thank You to all our Serving and Veteran Military for their service and sacrifices.
5 Contented Purrs for KaLyn!
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Want to Know More About the Men of Guardian Security?
Former military SpecOps,
these men now work for Guardian Security
(from the Black Swan Series)
protecting others but they can’t always protect their hearts.
Twenty-two years as a military wife has shown KaLyn the world, and thirty years in PR taught her that fact can be stranger than fiction. She leaves it up to the reader to separate truth from imagination.
She, her husband, and Little Bear (Alaskan Malamute) live in Tennessee on a micro-plantation filled with gardens, cattle, and quail. When she’s not writing, she’s at the shooting range or on the river.