USA Today bestselling author Hope Ramsay proves that love arrives when we least expect it.
Courtney Wallace loves her job as a wedding planner, but she's almost given up on her own happily-ever-after. She certainly doesn't it expect to find it with Matthew Lyndon, the hotshot lawyer she overhears taking a bet to seduce her. She's not amused by the challenge, but she decides to play along--after all, what better way to beat him at his own game?
Matt never intended to take the bet seriously. And moving next door wasn't part of his strategy to win-it was just a happy coincidence-but the more he gets to know Courtney, the more intrigued he becomes. When fun and games turn into something real, will these two decide they're in it to win it?
Ramsay spins a thoroughly entertaining story for her fourth Chapel of Love contemporary (after A Small-Town Bride). Feisty, sensitive Courtney Wallace plans weddings for a living in a small, picturesque Virginia town. Having been hurt many times herself, she's dubious about the prospect of happy romance. When she hears that local lawyer Matthew Lyndon has a bet going with a friend that he can seduce her in less than two dates, she seizes on it as an opportunity to teach Matt a long-overdue lesson about women. Instead, she learns that Matt isn't the callous player she assumed he was, leading to a dramatic moment that could change their relationship forever. The clever plotting and skillful characterization lend an appealing depth to this story. The enjoyable subplots include Matt's attempts to help a group of low-income tenants dodge eviction and some glimpses of earlier brides. There's also a romance between a shy songwriter and an Irish bartender that neatly sets up the next book in the series. Readers will want to come back again and again.
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Looking for love
Shenandoah Falls, Virginia, is far enough away from the DC area to have a small town feel, yet close enough to attract greedy developers who want to make hefty changes to it. The apartment complex in Dogwood Estates is feared to be demolished and the residents driven out. Matthew Lyndon, single at 25, has just started working at the Lyndon family law firm. With Arwen’s help as a paralegal, they try and salvage the lives of those living there. Courtney Wallace, single at 36, believes her chances at finding love and family have slipped away. As an event and wedding planner at Eagle Hill Manor, she can’t help but notice that most of her friends and acquaintances have found true love, gotten married, and either have children or are pregnant. If only she could find someone who wasn’t on her negative-types she has categorized all single men in. Both Courtney and Matt have had past experiences that caused them to not to trust a new relationship, and yet they are attracted to each other. They become closer after Matt moves into the apartment next door. I especially liked the scenes at the Jaybird Cafe and Music Hall, which is the place where most of Courtney’s and Matt’s friends end up at the end of the day. I enjoy the witty humor Hope Ramsay brings to her stories. Serious problems are added with the town attempting to solve them. The Lyndon elders are a challenge to deal with. Their heirs try to break away and make a life of their own, a challenge of its own. This town may be a bit disjointed, but there are some that try to save it for their own future. [I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author.]