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Animal Attraction: 8 Books Starring Our Furry Friends

Readers of Jill Shalvis and Susan Mallery know that these writers have a soft spot for animals. And not just dogs, mind you, though dogs certainly get a lot of love in their books.

Mallery and Shalvis  pulled together a list of their favorite books starring our furry friends. Read on, animal lovers!




Jill Shalvis-100Pets in romances make my day.  As a reader, I love it when an animal brings the comedy relief.  As a writer, I thrive on it. Here are a few of my faves:


Summer DaysWhen I think of unusual pets, the first book that springs to mind is Susan Mallery's Summer Days, which introduced May Stryker's pet elephant—yes, elephant. In the Fool's Gold books that followed, I've loved seeing Priscilla in the town parades, especially when she's dressed like Santa Claus. 


Slave to SensationAnd no list of mine would be complete without Nalini Singh's Slave to Sensation. Every time Roman and Julian showed up in a scene, the troublesome twosome, twin leopard cubs/changeling boys who get into as much trouble as possible, I laughed out loud. They are also adorable and playful and, under the mischief, they're wonderful cubs who have huge hearts. 


Rock Chick RenegadeAnother favorite is Boo from Rock Chick Renegade by Kristen Ashley. Boo is a black cat who's clumsy but proud and has full conversations with the heroine mostly pertaining to her not giving him enough treats.  A problem I can appreciate.



Kiss an AngelKiss an Angel by Susan Elizabeth Phillips, where Daisy Devereaux finds her soul mate in a cantankerous old tiger, Sinjun, when no one else in the world seems to love her.  One of my very favorite classic romances of all time. 




Susan Mallery-100In addition to comic relief, pets reveal a lot about the characters. You just have to love a person who treats animals with kindness—in real life and in fiction.


The Trouble with MistletoeWilla, the animal-loving heroine of Jill Shalvis's upcoming The Trouble with Mistletoe, feels her heart melt toward Keane—just a little—when she discovers that he's caring for his great-aunt's Siamese, Petunia, even though the cat hates him with every fiber of her feline heart. 


The Accidental SorceressIn Dana Marton's epic fantasy The Accidental Sorceress, healer Tera saves the life of a ferocious tiger, whom she names Magra (Mother). It's hard to say which is the pet, though, when Magra adopts Tera and begins to care for her like a cub.


Mrs Bravo and the BossMrs. Bravo and the Boss by Christine Rimmer features the heroine's cat, an orange tabby Maine Coon mix, Mr. Wiggles (aka Wigs). Soldier turned thriller writer Jed Walsh hates cats, but he quickly deduces that the way to Elise Bravo's heart is to win over Wigs!


Canyons of NightRex, the dust bunny in Jayne Castle's futuristic Canyons of Night, is a fluffy gray ball with four eyes and six paws. He loves shiny things, and hey, he carries a purse, so he has somewhere to keep his treasures.





Thanks to Susan Mallery and Jill Shalvis for sharing their favorite books with pets.

What are your favorites?

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