Diamonds are a dog’s best friend.
Harper Sinclair discovers that her champion, award-winning standard poodle, Ch. Edgewood Sky High Blue is missing her $50,000 diamond dog collar that was given to her by Harper’s eccentric, indulging grandmother along with valuable pieces of jewelry. Harper calls the robbery division of the NYPD and reports the thefts. The detective they send is surly and tough with a pair of brown eyes that make even this calm, cool socialite’s lungs claw for air.
Rough and tumble Detective Caleb Shaw has better things to do than run over to the penthouse of a frigging socialite to find a frigging collar for a frigging pampered poodle—award winning or not. He has real cases to solve, but when he gets a load of the poodle’s owner, his interest in the case…heats up. Satin sheets or not, he wants Harper. But there is more to this robbery than the dog collar. Has someone close to Harper pulled an inside job?
Can a lovely socialite collar a hard-boiled detective or are they worlds apart?
Author’s Favorite Quotes from Collared: Part 1
He rang the bell, and it chimed like these people had Big Ben in there somewhere.
“Geezus,” he muttered.
Zoe: This shows Caleb’s mindset when he goes to Harper’s penthouse. It’s also funny.
“Is that so?” He grinned. “You wouldn’t last five minutes in my world.”
“What? I can fit into any world. You wouldn’t last five minutes in mine.”
“What’s the hard part? Drinking champagne and partying until one in the morning? Oooh, brutal.”
Zoe: This exchange sets up the rivalry between them. I love his sarcasm.
Shane threw him a wry look. “She’s a fairy princess living in a castle in the clouds. You, my friend, are a troll who lives under a bridge.”
Zoe: This is said by Caleb’s partner at NYPD. Shows the difference between them and the obstacles they’ll face getting together.
“What’s the matter?” she asked. “Your wings at the cleaners with your brass knuckles?”
Zoe: I love this quote. Harper’s first challenge for Caleb in her world is a Fairy Tea Party—with little girls. On the invitation, it says wings are optional.
OK, I totally thought book three of this series, Hounded was going to be my favorite book and nothing would be able to top Poe and the Terrible Two but I stand corrected. Although I didn’t realize it until I started reading, Collared is the book I have been waiting for. Harper Sinclair, you are one serious class act and I can even forgive you for owning a poodle 🙂
Harper Sinclair’s life is charmed, to say the least. She has a father who adores her, more money than she can spend in multiple lifetimes, three friends (and their mates) whom she adores and cherishes and a very active philanthropic/social calendar. The only thing Harper Sinclair doesn’t have is a man she can trust and love and know that he loves her and not her money. Though she appears quite happy and confident on the outside, Harper has built many layers and walls around her true self so she is insulated and protected from the heartache she has experienced on more than one occasion. Letting someone in, letting someone get close has never been on the agenda until the moment her beloved champion poodle is drugged and her home is robbed.
Caleb Shaw enjoys his job and is very good at uncovering the identity of thieves and robbers. He is a committed and loyal detective who works on and solves only the most serious cases and a missing dog collar reported by a socialite is certainly not a serious case. To say Caleb is pissed off about this assignment doesn’t even come close. However, once Caleb begins his investigation it becomes clear that the break in and robbery of Harper’s home are more than a random act and may in fact be an inside job. Adding to Caleb’s troubles, Harper Sinclair is smonkin’ hot and he can’t seem to quit thinking about her or taking hits – literally – for her. Lucky for Caleb, Harper likes him too and she has a fantabulous masseuse on standby.
Despite a very rocky start and one seriously funny misunderstanding, Harper finds, for what is likely the first time in her life, that she is well and truly drawn to someone and it scares the hell out of her. Harper doesn’t give a damn that Caleb is nowhere close to her social standing: Caleb is strong, confident and sexy, has a mouth like a sailor (YAY!!!), doesn’t care how much money Harper has and, is willing to go to most any length to protect Harper and retrieve her stolen items. Caleb is everything Harper has always wanted in a man and partner but she is going to have to use all her tricks if she is going to convince him of how good they are together. Even when things get rough and, they certainly do in this one, Harper is committed to Caleb and the future she sees with him.
The Bottom Line: Collared is fantastic end (yes, I know there will be more books) to the initial books in the Going to the Dogs series. Throughout the series, Harper has always felt a little cold and somewhat standoffish to me but all of that is explained in this read and I fell head over heels for Harper. Despite her tough exterior and mountains of money, Harper is just as vulnerable and scared to risk her heart as the rest of the dog park girls were when they met their mates. As for Caleb, while all of the other boys in the series have certainly been just right for their respective dog park girl, Caleb is by far my favorite and the one and only man that could ever be successfully paired with Harper. The dynamic between Caleb and Harper is so strong and exciting from the very beginning that I just flew through the pages in order to see how their story would play out. Overall, Dawson has put together a fantastic series of reads that will appeal to a wide variety of readers including lovers of romance, light mystery/suspense, well written reads, HEAs and of course, ridiculously awesome canines. Thanks Zoe Dawson for providing me with yet another book that deprived me of sleep 🙂
Zoe Dawson is the alter ego of Karen Anders, award winning, multi-published author. Her writing journey started with poetry and branched out into fiction. With a couple of college English courses under her belt, she penned a historical, then moved onto contemporary romance fiction. Today, she is happy producing romantic suspense, romantic mystery, urban fantasy and paranormal novels. The words feed her soul and the happily ever afters feed her heart.