Review: Here Comes the Bride by Hope Ramsay

Review: Here Comes the Bride by Hope RamsayHere Comes the Bride by Hope Ramsay

Series: Chapel of Love #3
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Published by Forever on August 29, 2017
Pages: 304
Format: eARC
Source: Publisher
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three-half-stars      three-half-flames

There goes the groom . . .
For Professor Laurie Wilson, planning her wedding to longtime boyfriend Brandon Kopp has been a whirlwind. But somehow, between all the cake tastings and dress fittings, she never imagined being left at the altar. In the aftermath, she does what any sensible woman would - she swigs champagne and considers keying his car. Until someone knocks on her door with a much better idea for revenge.

Best man Andrew Lyndon thinks Laurie's better off without Brandon. But Laurie's father - and Andrew's boss - isn't going to accept anything less than a reconciliation. And he's made it Andrew's problem to solve. So Andrew decides to make Brandon jealous by setting Laurie up on a string of "dates." After a couple of weeks, Brandon will be begging Laurie to take him back. But Andrew's plan works a little too well because suddenly he's the one falling for Laurie -- and planning a proposal of his own.

The Delight

Left at the altar by the groom finds a jilted bride plotting to get a bit of her own back with the her former fiance’s best friend.  All sorts of bridal and family drama ensues, but above all there was a light and heartwarming romance that rose up from it all.

Review

Here Comes the Bride is the third book in the Chapel of Love series.  It’s connected with earlier books through setting and a large cast of returning characters, but it easily can read as a standalone.

So, yes, lovely Laurie Wilson plans to wed her college sweetheart after ten years from first date until now in the most gorgeous dream wedding her organizational habits and lists could make it.  Only, Brandon backs out right at the altar.  Not cool, dude!  Seriously?!?  At. The. Altar.  Then tosses out there that they should both live a little before chaining themselves to each other.  And then, the handsome, suave, and oh-so put together knight in shining Brooks Brothers suit steps in to clean up the mess.  I adored Andrew in his story (and this was a shocker since I wasn’t all that impressed with him in his sister’s story).  He truly shone through like polished gold in this one.

The story was fun and lightly engaging, but it wasn’t without its issues for me.  I loved the romance pair together, but I only moderately liked the situation for this romance.  A rebound romance with all the fake dates, manipulating, both pairs of exes, interfering family on both sides, and even the final build up left me wanting to see a bit more down time and relationship building.  They were great friends and there were indicators that they were a superb fit, but I felt their whole romance was happening under duress.  Though, that dance club scene was convincing as to the electric attraction born between them.

The side plot with the playboy cousin of the hero, Matt, and Courtney, the wedding coordinator and new friend,  was maybe meant to be funny and definitely was setting up for a future story, but it was only funny for a short time.  Their separate issues, particularly Courtney’s got old.  Courtney has these over the top manhater issues and Matt was the opposite with his rakish casual seductions and affairs.

Another distraction, though I confess a welcome one, were those over the invasive and hilarious Lyndons.  Andrew’s family plotted and connived in their matchmaking efforts that were obvious to the reader, but not so much to Andrew and Laurie.  They are just so fun in the way they interfere with good motives.  And sigh… loved seeing things going well for another Lyndon’s relationship that was burning in the background of the last book to a happily ever after.  Oh, and a storyline for Junie is percolating nicely for a future book.

The tone of the story invites the reader to just go with it for an easy and fun romantic read with enough conflict and passion to keep it from being too bland.  I love the author’s gift for blending humor and endearing characters.  I would definitely recommend this series to Contemporary Romance fans who enjoy small town and family elements infused in the story.

My thanks to Forever for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.

 

Challenges

Romance Roundabout #178 CR
New Release #120
Books N Tunes #33
COYER #65
Ben E King’s Stand by Me

Recommendations

  

 

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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.
  • RO

    Sometimes I like when the romance is light and not too heavy, but it has to have the believable background along for the ride to hold my interest, This sort of reminds me of a Hallmark movie for Valentine’s Day that I would probably watch, but I’m not sure this would make it to the ever growing TBR pile. Loved your review! Hugs and Happy Tuesday!

    • Yes, exactly, Ro. Fun and easy, but at least somewhat believable.

      Haha, yes, the hallmark romances. Those can be so cheesy and syrupy, but I do love them when in the right mood.

      Enjoy the rest of your Tuesday, Radiant Ro! 🙂

  • I can see why you would enjoy this but also why you would have some issues too. I recently discovered this author and really like her writing. However I think I would also struggle with the romance too. I am not a huge fan of rebound romances. Too much drama.

    • You summed it up in a nutshell, Renee. It was enjoyable, but the rebound relationship didn’t stir me much.

  • The interfering family sounds like fun. It is a shame the romance didn’t have the time you needed.

    • The Lyndons were a hoot. I kept laughing over their attempts to be subtle when they were butting in- well except the aunt- she wasn’t subtle. 😉
      But yes, a lot of balls in the air on this one.

  • Karen

    I liked the couple (mostly) but this story really didn’t work for me. I can usually overlook a lot for a cute, fluffy romance but there was too much going on that took focus away from the romance IMO.

    For What It’s Worth

    • Agreed. There were two other romances, the exes, and the families for starters and then add in their job difficulties and the misunderstandings… uh huh, too much.

  • That sounds like it had a bit too much drama going on.

    • It really did, Mary. Left my head spinning a few times.

  • If I am reading a romance, then I want it to be the main focus and this sounds like it isn’t. I am curious as to why he waited until she was at the altar? It just never makes sense to me when I hear about this kind of thing in real life, so I am curious for this guys reasons. I think I will pass on this one anyway. Thanks for sharing.

    • It really was not a good start to the book for me, Lorna. I got pretty steamed that he waited until the middle of the wedding to call things off. I get that he had cold feet, but to let it get that far. Ugh.

      Yeah, there is a lot swirling around in this one and it never did get back on the right foot for me, but hopefully the next book will be a better one.

  • I do love small town romances, but situational drama, not so much. Bummer figuring out you don’t want to marry someone so late, sounds like she’s way better off without the ninny!

    Btw, I’ve been listening to Changeless (book 2) by Gail Carriger and loving it! Glad you convinced me to get back to the series! 🙂

    • Yes, the drama was pushing across the line for me. And no doubt she was lucky in the end that he did mess up big.

      Shazam! I do love to read news like that, Rachel. I finished book five about a week ago and now I’m having withdrawals. It was a good series. I’m told the prequel series and even the post-series spin-off are both good, as well.

  • I need to get back to this series. I really enjoy the small town feel of this series but sometimes all the drama can be overwhelming.

    • I love the series, too. There are a couple more stories I definitely need. But yeah… this was one of the more dramatic ones. LOL