Better Date than Never
In Love at First Date, the first book in Susan Hatler's Better Date than Never series, Ellen is thirty and wants to find true love. After her mother's past relationship failures, Ellen wants to use scientific methods to find the man of her dreams. Given her abandonment issues, Ellen relies on questionnaires and virtual matching to take the uncertainty out of romance.
When Chester the Chewing Canine chomps into the contents of Ellen's purse, she panics. Her friend Rachel adores the dog, and will kill Ellen if he overdoses on her lip gloss. Thankfully, Chester did not chew her cell phone. Ellen frantically careens to the local animal hospital, hacking dog in tow.
Ellen wants to force order onto chaos. She finds her objective criteria and scientific methods exploding in their own version of a big bang when she meets a handsome, non-vetted stranger over Chester's hacking and trails of drool.
The short work is entertaining and fun. The characters are believable and likeable. Rachel, Ellen's best friend, is obsessed with her dog's mental health and happiness. Ms. Hatler also offers humor. For example, one of Ellen's suitors invites her out to the Chinese restaurant Wok N’ Roll.