This is the product of the Venn Diagram of Romance novel readers and cat people. This may not be so much of a Venn Diagram as concentric circles. I found this on the free shelf at the library a few weeks ago, but didn't pick it up. Later, talking to my brother about Brokeback Mountain (I finally saw it) we talked about this book, Snowflake Kittens. He made me promise to go to the library and pick it up.
Luckily, it was still there. I read this thing in its entirety in about 2 days. The book is 3 regency-era novellas involving kittens and spinsters. So that Venn diagram above also should have Women-of-a-certain age..
I, as you may guess, only retained the important plot points. Character names, not so much. Here you go! Snowflake kittens:
Story 1: An injured war hero from the Napoleonic wars returns home to take over the estate after his brother and wife die. Soldier inherits their two spawn and, yup, a kitten. While riding home (stoically) he sees the new tenant covered in unladylike mud. She knows she offended him by doing her own gardening. What a strumpet. She has a puppy, a yellow lab.
Through a series of dumb regency maneuvering he realizes the tenant is a well-regarded governess who inherited enough $$ to retire. How perfect! Someone to govern those two precocious kids, one with a moppet-law mandated lisp. He's not sure he can be around her, though, because he desires her oh, so much. (This is a chaste book, so the language is quite mild. As you would expect a kitten-themed romance novel to be)
After the kitten is lost in a snowstorm and tennant-lady's dog retrieves/saves it do the two starcrossed 40-somethings get together. It is a very happy ending for all.
Confirmed bachelor rides into the moors to visit his self-exiled brother. Bachelor invited the lady who broke off the engagement with his brother. But Bachelor really likes the lady. Oh, and brother is super-into treasure hunting for Roman relics on his estate. AND, a mangy, pregnant cat befriends bachelor and brings him gifts of jewels from a neighboring estate.
This is fairly straight forward, but bachelor is constantly creating work for his Valet by getting dirty and petting the filthy cat. (I can imagine Jeeves not really tolerating this behavior from Wooster.) Well, the cat was trained by a band of rogues who steal from estates through the moorlands. They manage to steal the cat back and Bachelor has to ride out in a snowstorm to save her. The only person who cares is the lady (brother's former fiancee and currently the squeeze of bachelor) and she is suitably impressed by a guy who would brave the weather to save a cat.
She is proposed to over a batch of kittens.
There is some sort of convoluted custody arrangement that doesn't really matter Dude is engaged to a shrew. Lady is engaged to a fop. They both want custody of some kid that are their mutual relations. The two kids put on plays and make all the adults watch. These are elaborate plays where the 4 or 5 kittens, all with names like "Hope" or "Prudence."
Fop and Shrew hate kittens and one kitten "attacks" them and they shriek from the settee. Dude and Lady can't keep their hands off each other. Stealing kisses while playing billiards. There is also an admiral who hates the French. All the plays are morality tales that tell the stories of our four lovers.
Fop and Shrew elope which leaves Dude and Lady to marry and adopt the adorable moppets and their 5 kittens.
There are more books: Mistletoe Kittens, Valentine Kittens, Spring Kittens, Wedding Day Kittens. You should totes check them out.