House Trained

House Trained

by Jackie Bouchard


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House Trained by Jackie Bouchard

Alex Halstad, a childless-by-choice interior designer and dog mom, is a true perfectionist. But her orderly life turns chaotic when the teenage daughter her husband, Barry, never knew he had shows up on their doorstep...with a baby girl of her own in tow. While Alex’s dog enthusiastically welcomes the new arrivals, Alex struggles with the loss of her steady routine. She desperately needs peace and quiet to get her business back on track before Barry finds out she’s spent most of their savings. Meanwhile, the arrival of the girls stirs up old insecurities, and Alex can’t help but worry that Barry’s ex will make an entrance too. With her tidy life a distant memory, will Alex be able to learn from her dog the true meaning of love and acceptance?

From bestselling author Jackie Bouchard comes a humorous and heartwarming look at how life creates opportunities to love in surprising ways.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781503947122
Publisher: Amazon Publishing
Publication date: 10/20/2015
Pages: 291
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Jackie Bouchard, a USA Today bestselling author, writes what she calls Fido-friendly fiction: humorous and heartwarming stories about women and the dogs that profoundly impact their lives. Bouchard has lived in Southern California, Canada, and Bermuda and now lives in San Diego with her husband and dog. Her novels include What the Dog Ate, House Trained, and Rescue Me, Maybe. For more information, visit

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House Trained 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
KrittersRamblings More than 1 year ago
Check out the full review at Kritters Ramblings If there was ever a book that hit close to home, this one did! Alex is a dog mom and has always been satisfied with a childless-life. Her and her husband from day one have wanted to be puppy parents and keep their house a childless zone! She has a younger sister who is the ultimate mom with three boys and is doing the stay at home. When her husband has a child from a previous relationship come into their life, this couple's home and life is turned upside down. This book hits home in so many spots. I am a doggie mom (I have three). My sister is doing the work from home mom thing with two daughters. So from page one, I was sucked in and literally read this during a readathon in two sittings.
Laura_at_125Pages More than 1 year ago
3 Stars. Original review at 125pages I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. ♦ I saw a review recently in which the reviewer stated "there are good three star books and bad three star books". I really liked that statement and feel it is true for this book. House Trained is one of the good three star books. Alex is a character obsessed with perfection and her dog. Eschewing parenthood she is content with keeping her house perfect and building her design business. Her husband is secondary to her dog as is the rest of her family. The world building and pacing were fine, but the characters just didn't resonate with me. I found most of them shallow and unrealistic. By the time they were redeemed it was just a little too late for me. But I still enjoyed the book. It was not epic, but it was cute and sometimes you just need a read that doesn't tax your mind. So after all was said and done House Trained is a sweet book that is not mind-blowing but that is okay. ◊ Favorite lines - "I get confused wondering if I need to be a better person or just a regular dog. Of course, my path to self-improvement probably starts with not blaming others for things that've gone wrong in my life."
KrisAnderson_TAR More than 1 year ago
I just finished reading House Trained by Jackie Bouchard. Alexandra “Alex” Halstad is an interior designer married to Barry. They live in Santa Barbara, California. Barry has been saving for a car (he does not believe in debt), but Alex has been borrowing the money to keep her business afloat (without telling Barry). She has also racked up a load of debt on her credit cards (without telling her husband). Barry and Alex do not have children and they never wanted them. They are very content with the just their dog, Marie. Then Barry comes home one day after being away on a business trip to tell his wife important news. It turns out that Barry has an eighteen year old daughter that he never knew about. Her name is Marie (just like their dog). Marie did not know that her father was alive. Her mother, Jade told Marie that her father was deceased. When Marie was looking for schools, she discovered that her father was very much alive (and nearby). Marie comes over for dinner to meet Alex and spend more time with Barry. Marie shows up with a fifteen month old daughter named Ruthie. Marie (the daughter, not the dog) wants to spend the summer before college with Barry. She wants to get to know her father. Without her mother’s support (and she is not giving it), Marie cannot afford to live by herself. Marie asks if she can live with Barry and Alex. Alex is less than thrilled. She has a beautiful home and can just imagine what a child will do to it. Barry, though, wants her to stay. Alex reluctantly agrees (she has no idea what is in store for her this summer). Things are about to change for Barry and Alex. They are in for a life changing summer. House Trained was a good book (if you can get past the first chapter). I was not sure I would enjoy the story (the first couple of pages had me wondering), but I was drawn in. I was curious to see how everything would turn out for Marie, Ruthie, Alex, and Barry. House Trained was an interesting story and well-written. I liked the characters and the storyline. House Trained shows that you never know what life has in store for you and a person is never too old to change or adapt. I give House Trained 4.25 out of 5 stars. I received a complimentary copy of House Trained from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Holly More than 1 year ago
In House Trained, Alex and her husband, Barry are happily married with no kids but with a dog named Marie until one day a shocker comes their way in the form of a daughter that Barry didn't know he had. When Marie aka Wren shows up on their doorstop with a daughter of her own named Ruthie, every little thing gets turned upside down and when Wren's mother shows up, the next 48 hours will test Alex and Barry's relationship. After a major fight, Alex is kicked out and when she comes home to try to make up with Barry, she discovers the house is on fire and everything is lost but not everything as things fall into place like they should. When I first read this book, I just couldn't get into it especially since the first chapter all Alex was worried about was why is Barry talking to his private part but after I got past that, it turned into a pretty descent book. This book reminds you that family isn't cookie cutter and to have a surprise like a daughter just showing up on your doorstep will send anyone into tailspin trying to figure things out. I think adding the dog in the book was pretty awesome since all of us that don't have kids, do think that they are just as much part of the family as well. Thank You to Jackie Bouchard for writing a good novel that makes me want to go read more books by you!!! I received this book from the Publisher via NetGalley in exchange for a honest review. I also received this book from BookSparks Girl's Best Friend Blog Tour!
kaitlynspet More than 1 year ago
House Trained by Jackie Bouchard is the story of two young professionals, Alex and Barry, childless by choice and their labradoodle Marie. As surprises reveal themselves humor and irony collide and Alex and Barry have to deal with the twists and turns life has thrown their way. Events cause Alex to question her family relationships, values and choices. Would recommend House Trained for readers that enjoy contemporary fiction, and animal stories.