Reviews: RUNAWAY GROOMSMAN, PARTNERS IN CRIME, & BUILT TO LAST

Hey everyone and Happy Monday!  I hope you all had a great weekend and got plenty of quality reading time in.  I did as I’m trying to catch up on the ARCs I got behind on thanks to my work deadlines.  I’m slowly but surely working my way through them but still have a ways to go.  Thankfully the novels I’m sharing my thoughts on today were all lovely reads, which makes playing catch up so much easier.  That said, I also wanted to give folks a head’s up that I might be even more sporadic with blog hopping this week than I usually am.  My mom is having surgery on Wednesday, so I’ll be traveling Tuesday night to be with her and I’m not sure how much I’ll be online until she’s back at home.  I have a couple of posts scheduled for later in the week but it will probably be the weekend before I really get back into the swing of things.

 

Reviews: RUNAWAY GROOMSMAN, PARTNERS IN CRIME, & BUILT TO LASTRunaway Groomsman Goodreads

Author:  Meghan Quinn

Publication Date: October 11, 2022

Publisher:  Montlake

FTC Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Netgalley.  All opinions are my own.

 

Runaway Groomsman by Meghan Quinn follows Sawyer Castle, a Hollywood screenwriter who writes romance for a living.  While he knows what a good on-screen romance looks like, his own love life is a disaster, so much so that when the story opens, we meet him while he’s standing at the altar watching his ex-girlfriend marry his ex-best friend.  Not only did they have an affair behind his back, but they also had the nerve to ask him to be a groomsman at their wedding.  Struck by the ridiculousness of the whole situation, Sawyer abruptly tells off the bride and groom and runs out of the church.  Unfortunately for him, many media outlets were there to cover the big event and they all caught his escape act on camera.  Needing a place to hide out for a while, Sawyer decides to stay in the tiny town of Canoodle, California, not knowing his life is about to change forever.

Fallon Long owns and runs Canoodle Cove Cabins, family-owned business, that she took over from her dad, Sully, who is suffering from Alzheimer’s Disease.  When Sawyer checks in for a long-term stay, Fallon is struggling to make ends meet and is overwhelmed with the responsibilities of running the business, performing desperately needed renovations on the cabins and grounds, and with caring for her dad.  She is grateful to have the income that Sawyer’s stay will provide, but beyond that, she assumes he’s just another shallow, ego driven celebrity, as does her hilarious best friend, Jazlyn, who teases him and calls him Julia (a nod to Julia Roberts and her film Runaway Bride) for the entire book. That is, until he makes it his mission to prove both Fallon and Jazlyn wrong.

I can’t even express how much I adored Fallon and Sawyer together.  I loved their easy banter and their obvious attraction to one another, but I appreciated the slow burn nature of the story because Sawyer has his work cut out for him, trying to prove he’s not the crazy, jealous guy the media has portrayed him to be.  I thought it was so sweet how Sawyer would sneak around, secretly renovating small parts of the property to help Fallon out.  The renovations not only gave him a much needed sense of purpose, but he also just really enjoyed doing his part to alleviate some of Fallon’s worries so that she could focus on her dad.

As sweet as the blossoming romance between Fallon and Sawyer was, my absolute favorite part of this book was Sawyer’s relationship with Sully.  It was heartbreaking to watch Sully when he would have bad days because of the Alzheimer’s but the way Sawyer went out of his way to treat Sully with respect and dignity and gently help him through some of his worst moments was just so touching and heartwarming.

Runaway Groomsman was such a fantastic read for me!  It’s both heartwarming and hilarious, and it’s filled with a wonderful cast of characters that you will fall completely in love with.  4.5 STARS 

 

Reviews: RUNAWAY GROOMSMAN, PARTNERS IN CRIME, & BUILT TO LASTPartners in Crime Goodreads

Author: Alisha Rai

Publication Date: October 18, 2022

Publisher: Avon and Harper Voyage

FTC Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Netgalley.  All opinions are my own.

 

Partners in Crime by Alisha Rai was such a fun read for me.  This was my first time reading romantic suspense and I quite enjoyed the blend of romance with a more action-packed, high adrenaline storyline.

The story follows Mira Chaudhary, a 35 year old accountant who is trying to break away from the dysfunctional antics of her family, and live life on her own terms. All Mira wants at this point in her life is to find a nice guy to settle down with, so she turns to an Indian matchmaking app in hopes of finding her perfect match.  In the midst of her dating adventures, Mira learns that her aunt has died and that she needs to meet with her aunt’s attorney to discuss her inheritance.  Imagine Mira’s surprise when she arrives at the attorney’s office, only to discover that the attorney is none other than Naveen Desai, Mira’s very sexy ex. Then, as if the situation isn’t awkward enough, Mira and Naveen are kidnapped from the parking lot.  Even after they escape, tensions escalate both because it becomes a race against the clock to figure out what the kidnappers want and where it is, and also because there’s definitely unresolved sexual tension between Mira and Naveen.

I was thoroughly entertained, both by the prospect of a second chance romance as it becomes more and more clear that Mira and Naveen have feelings for one another, and by the high stakes action-packed kidnapping storyline.  The kidnapping storyline is especially fun as Naveen and Mira are forced to work closely together and their adventure is filled with unexpected twists and turns, involving hackers, a stolen necklace, and seemingly endless secrets from Mira’s family’s past. I really liked both Mira and Naveen too. I admired the fact that Mira wanted to break away from her clearly screwed up family, and I also enjoyed the fact that Naveen wasn’t scared off by the troubles that obviously surrounded her family and instead, stuck by her side to help her get out of the mess her family has gotten her into. I don’t want to give anything else away about their adventures, but I’ll just say it’s a wild ride!

If you’re looking for a fun romance with an action-packed storyline that will keep you guessing and on the edge of your seat, be sure to check out Partners in Crime4 STARS

 

Reviews: RUNAWAY GROOMSMAN, PARTNERS IN CRIME, & BUILT TO LASTBuilt to Last Goodreads

Author: Erin Hahn

Publication Date: October 18, 2022

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press, St. Martin’s Griffin

FTC Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Netgalley.  All opinions are my own.

 

I love second chance romances and I love home renovation shows, so I knew I had to read Erin Hahn’s new book Built to Last, which features both.  And what a delightful read it was!  The story follows Shelby Springfield and Cameron Riggs, two former child actors who also happen to be former childhood sweethearts.

Shelby, in particular, captured my heart right away.  We learn that, after some pretty bad experiences including a public meltdown, Shelby chose to leave show business altogether and move home to Michigan.  She has been working with her dad, who renovates and flips houses, and has found new purpose in her life restoring vintage furniture.  For the past ten years, she has been building a new life for herself and trying to prove to herself and to everyone else that she isn’t that messed up little girl anymore.  I really loved everything about Shelby, from her determination to move on from her past to her absolute passion when it comes to restoration.

The more I got to know Shelby, the more I wanted her to reunite with her childhood sweetheart, Cameron. Why?  Because he really is a sweetheart in every way. While Cameron stayed in show business, he changed his focus and now travels the world making documentaries.  No matter what Cameron has going on though, if Shelby calls him, Cameron comes running.  Their connection just runs that deep, even if Cameron is afraid to admit to himself just how strongly he still feels for Shelby.  But when the opportunity presents itself for Cameron to work with Shelby again, on a new reality TV home renovation show, neither Cameron nor Shelby feel they can say no, even if Shelby’s obnoxious ex, Lyle, is the showrunner.

Hahn does such a wonderful job weaving together the various threads of this story.  I loved watching Cameron and Shelby work together and grow closer in the present, while also getting quite a few glimpses into what they were like together as child actors.  I also thoroughly enjoyed watching them take on Lyle and his ridiculous shenanigans.  Lyle is the character you’ll love to hate, for sure.  In addition to Shelby’s relationship with Cameron though, I also absolutely adored her relationship with her Dad.  They were just so sweet together and I loved how he helped to get her back on her feet after her meltdown and that she was so determined to do this new show to try to pay her Dad back for all of his help and support.  This story just touched my heart on so many levels.

If you’re in the mood for a heartwarming second chance romance that also features plenty of entertaining scenes revolving around a reality TV show, as well as a lovely story about the importance of family, I highly recommend Built to Last4.5 STARS

24 replies
  1. Michele
    Michele says:

    I recently read Royally Not Ready by Meghan Quinn and absolutely loved it – so looking forward to reading more from her!

    Reply
  2. Tanya @ Girl Plus Books
    Tanya @ Girl Plus Books says:

    As much as I enjoy Meghan Quinn, she can be hit or miss for me. Some of her books dive too far into the rom-com realm and get to silly and over the top for me. But then there are her others which are less rom-com and delivery characters that I fall for hard. 🙂 I’ve been excited for Runaway Groomsman and reading your review makes me certain that it will be one that I love.
    Tanya @ Girl Plus Books recently posted…The Sunday Post #309 | October 30, 2022

    Reply

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