Blurb: Times are hard in the small Smoky Mountain town of Hansonville, North Carolina, and for former forest service employee Raine Stockton this Christmas will be harder than most as she prepares to spend her first holiday without her family, without a job… and without a dog. When a mysterious Secret Santa starts making dreams come true all over the county everyone’s spirits are on the rise, but Raine can’t help but wonder whether there is more to this enigmatic philanthropist than meets the eye. Meanwhile, the police are baffled by a string of crimes that are unlike anything the small town has ever seen before. It will take a mischievous golden retriever pup to find the clues that solve both mysteries… and to heal Raine’s broken heart.
My Review: While I'm 100% a cat person, Donna Ball's Raine Stockton Dog Mysteries have an extra special place in my heart. So stumbling upon this sweet story detailing how Raine came to own her canine crew was like an early Christmas gift. For anyone who hasn't read this series, this short story is the perfect place to start; or for anyone like me who can't get enough Raine it's a joy to see how it all began for her and Cisco. I can't wait for my next full length adventure with them.