Diamond In The Ruff
by Emily Carmichael, paranormal (2001)
Bantam, $5.50, ISBN 0-553-58283-6


Miss Piggy is back! If you have no idea what I am talking about, you probably haven't read Emily Carmichael's 1998 book Finding Mr Right. Piggy is actually Lydia Keane, a woman who died while cheating on her best friend Amy with Amy's husband. As a punishment, Lydia is reincarnated as a fat, bad-tempered Corgi. She helped Amy found a new love in Finding Mr Right, and now she's back with another matchmaking adventure.

Yes, I'm one of those dog people. I'm biased and quite sentimental when it comes to this book. But I adore Miss Piggy. So what if the human characters are as bland as milquetoast warmed over? This is Piggy's story. I want my doggie. Sigh.

Josephine "Joey" DeMato is a wedding consultant who doesn't believe in love for all the usual reasons. Tomato Jo babysits Amy's Corgis when Amy and her hubby Dr Dumb go on their honeymoon, and Miss Piggy is asked by divine powers to match Tomato Jo to... cop Ben "Not Affleck, People" Ramsey... who is engaged to Tomato's old friend Alicia... who is starting to fall for another guy named Pat... even as she and Ben ask Tomato to arrange their upcoming nuptials. Oh, what a tangled-up situation. But Miss Piggy has an ally in an equally mischievous girl named Tess. Party time, people!

Okay, the humans are boring. Joey? She's just there, broken record love life and all. Ben? He's just there too, although I admit I find his lack of social sophistication kinda cute. Alicia? She's there too... somewhere. Pat? He's almost there. Somewhere. Lost in the wallpaper. It's all about Miss Piggy, really. Grumpy, bitchy, whiny, and reluctantly noble, Miss Piggy is the Corgi, people. Not just a Corgi, the Corgi.

She steals the show. Heck, she's the show. Every pesky human being and their merry-go-round musical chair game is just filler. I must give the author this though: the potentially messy plot she has here is resolved with minimum mess. No messy "oops sex" and "we're cheating on our spouses-to-be, but since we're in love it's okay" complications here, just nice people who don't know what's in front of them until it's almost too late.

Maybe next time, Miss Piggy will meet a nice dog and fall in love. How's that? It sure beats the divine Miss Piggy, the canine Bette Midler, having to run hoops all around dim, clueless, and boring homo sapiens.

Rating: 84


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