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The Declan Diaries: Profits to Charity

My debut romantic novel has been up on Kindle for a few months now and I have decided to donate the profits to charity. The charities have been chosen on the basis that they use dogs to help less abled people, of all ages and circumstances. The charities include Guide Dogs, Hearing Dogs for the Deaf, Pets as Therapy, and Dogs for the disabled/PAWS.

So – what’s it about? Here’s a summary:

Declan (Deccy) is a Dalmatian owned by Suzy, whose life he observes from his own unique perspective as the narrator of the story. Suzy, once Daddy’s darling daughter, is used to getting what she wants and since Daddy has passed on she’s been looking for another man to treat her like a princess. Against a background of dog show bitching and rumours, an interfering mother and Deccy barely surviving a road accident, Suzy loses control of her life and descends into meltdown. After a harsh wake-up call she realises she has to change if she is going to get what is really important in life. Too late, she discovers someone very special was under her nose all along, but now he’s gone.

It’s a dog’s life, all right …

The novel is set in rural Ireland, present day. Deccy – who really did exist – loved showing but unlike in the novel, he never went on to become a champion, nor was he ever a stud dog. However, his obsessions about food, walks, and the possibility of sex, were as recognizable in real life as they are in The Declan Diaries. I lost him in 2012 and still miss him.

I have exercised artistic license in other ways. In the novel, Deccy recognises colours, understands a lot about human activities and habits, and what people are saying. And, of course, he is articulate and can write a novel!

cover sized to fit

Read a review and download it here

Here’s a taster, from one of Suzy’s run-ins with a dog show rival:

‘A word, young lady!’ Suzy challenges her rival loudly.
‘Suzy. Whatja want?’ retorts Aine with no grace. I sidle round behind Suzy sensing trouble and sure enough, within seconds she goes for the jugular without preamble.
‘Apparently there’s a rumour going around that Deccy’s infertile and it comes back to YOU!’
Suzy is leaning forwards slightly, hands on hips, chin jutting towards the enemy. Aine waits for a few seconds regarding her with a supercilious look before lowering her gaze to where I am sitting, peering nervously round Suzy’s legs. I feel my short coat bristle under a stare that could probably strip paint off the walls and my top lips twitch as I fight an instinct to corrugate them into a warning snarl, showing my sharp teeth. Aine swivels her eyes back to Suzy.
‘It’s no rumour though, is it Suzy’ the unrepentant voice sounds ultra calm, ‘he did that mating and nothing came of it, did it? There were no puppies, were there! she ends with a taunt.
Suzy controls herself with an effort.
‘Whatever your spies told you, there was more to it than that!’ she spits, ‘ try getting all the facts before you start spreading slanderous gossip, you malicious bitch!’
Aine’s eyes narrow as her voice hardens.
‘He did the mating, TWICE, and there were no puppies. What else is there to know?’
Suzy’s face has reddened and I fear an explosion imminently.
‘IT’S NOT ALL DOWN TO HIM’ she screams. ‘AND, ‘ she continues at a more normal volume, ‘I can’t be responsible for pet owners who fancy a litter and have no idea about mating dates! She was WELL over! Some people think they know it all!’
Aine looks at a distant point roughly over Suzy’s left shoulder and there is a small pause.
‘Really. And how would you know that?’ she examines a mark on her jacket, ‘or are you a vet now?’
‘I don’t have to justify myself to YOU!’ shouts Suzy, ‘it’s nothing to do with you and you have NO RIGHT to go around slagging my dog on half a story!’
Aine looks up from her jacket inspection and senses triumph.
‘That’s too bad, Suzy’ she says, her face breaking into a smirk, it’s too late now … nobody will believe you. He’s finished as a stud dog now.’


So — download THE DECLAN DIARIES and donate to a good cause at the same time!

© Gill Pavey 2015

Book cover by Jack Knight

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