Sun
Jun 11 2017 11:00am

Mira Lyn Kelly The Wedding Date Bargain Reunites Lovers

The Wedding Bargain by Mira Lyn Kelly

In the hands of the very skilled Mira Lyn Kelly, not one but two perennial romance clichés—the “one that got away” and “losing one’s virginity”—are combined into a delightfully frothy, occasionally serious, summer confection. The second book in Kelly’s Wedding Date series reacquaints the reader with a tight group of Chicago-based friends, with a wedding and romance (egged on by interfering, all-too-knowledgeable friends) as the backdrop. 

Once upon a time, the “Safewalk stud” aka Max Brandt walked Sarah Cole, a lovely dark-haired young co-ed, back to her dorm from the library. They became friends, and perhaps a little more, until the night that a kiss turned passionate and Sarah begged Max to be her first lover. Tempted though he was, Max turned her down, thinking such a momentous decision should be undertaken with at least of semblance of loving feelings on each side. And he didn’t love her.

Fast forward to Chicago eight years later. Sarah’s been engaged—that didn’t work out so well since her “I-respect-you-too-much-to-sleep-with-you” beau was all about playing around with other gals. Max too has come close to getting hitched but it didn’t work out. He’s very popular with the ladies but lately even that’s been losing its appeal.

He had a reputation for being something of a player, but the truth was, the game was getting old. He dug women. Got off on finding out how many different ways he could make them moan. But this dance he’d been doing—keeping the conversation going for the sake of a connection deep enough to enhance the sex, while making sure he stayed well shy of anything that smacked of more than one night? Lately he’d started to feel like he was going through the motions. Like maybe he’d rather skip the dance all together.

Sarah Cole may have put her romantic urges on the down low since graduating from college, but her business smarts, tenacity, and ambition have made her a young executive rocketing through the ranks. She moves in with her childhood friend Piper for a two-month stint in Chicago, marking time until she finally lands in the Big Apple to take on the position of a lifetime. Maybe now’s the time to rid herself of her increasingly pesky virginity. Piper is all in, keeping a vigil for likely candidates.

“Is this an intervention?” Sarah Cole asked her oldest friend and roommate of less than two hours, peering down at her lemon-drop martini before surveying the popular bar surrounding them. “I thought we were celebrating the start of my vacation and move back to Chicago, not forcing me to take a hard look at the blatant shortcomings of my life.”

There’s no time like the present: Piper looks on approvingly at the off-duty cops partying up a storm at a raucous stag event. But of course, “of all the gin joints,” who should be among the crowd but Max Brandt?

She knew that voice.

Even eight years later, her heart skipped a beat and her skin started to tingle at the sound. No. There was no way it was him. It couldn’t be. Sure, these were cops and this was Chicago—but still, what were the odds?

Slowly turning in her seat, she felt the air leak from her lungs as her gaze tripped over a set of powerfully broad shoulders and the tall, muscular frame supporting them; stumbled up to the solid, squared-off jaw and not quite straight nose she’d once run the tip of her finger down; and then finally landed on that mouth, currently set in the same off-kilter grin that had played peekaboo in her dreams for years after they’d said goodbye.

None of this works if Max hasn’t been haunted by memories of Sarah too. He notices all the little changes about her. Where eight years ago she would have playfully swatted his arm during the Safewalk stud banter, now not so much: “But this Sarah hadn’t touched him once. Not a hug, handshake, or physical contact of any kind. Which was weird, because women were always touching him.” For Max, Sarah is not just any girl. He can’t lie to himself. She was never, never had been, “just another girl in the crowd.” Max is slammed back to the last time he saw Sarah.

When he’d finally gotten a taste of the temptation that had been slowly driving him out of his mind since the day he met her. When he’d done the hardest thing he’d ever had to do and said goodbye.

It had been the right thing. There had been things she wanted for herself, things she deserved, that she wouldn’t have been able to have with him. But now after all these years, here she was again, and he wasn’t ready to let her go so quickly.

Two former more-than-just-friends together in the same city equal all the conditions in place for a summer fling. Max is achingly romantic as he gently, inexorably turns up the heat on his dates with Sarah. There is an air of spontaneous combustion as two old friends enjoy some sensational benefits. But at the end of the summer, will Max lose Sarah to her dream job? Has Sarah found the one man who will wrench her heart away from the balance sheet and her compensation package? Sink into The Wedding Date Bargain and savor Max and Sarah’s journey.

***

Learn more about or order a copy of The Wedding Bargain by Mira Lyn Kelly, available now: 

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H&H Editor Picks:

Well, This Is Awkward: Unconventional First Meetings in Romance

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June 2017 Romance New Releases

 

 

 

 

 


Janet Webb aka @JanetETennessee moved from the San Francisco Bay to eastern Tennessee. Baseball is my passion: I follow the Chattanooga Lookouts and the Nashville Sounds (farm team of my beloved Oakland Athletics). Social media devotee. Stories on royals and politics catch my eye. Ottawa born. Grew up on Georgette Heyer and Helen MacInnes. I also review at Criminal Element.

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4 comments
Janet Webb
2. JanetW
It was a lot of fun. And can I just say how much I appreciate your comments on so many of my reviews: they make my day!
Kareni
3. Kareni
Well, you're quite welcome, Janet. (And this way you know you're not sending your words unread out into the ether!)
Heather Waters
4. HeatherWaters
@Kareni @JanetW -- And you BOTH make our days here at HQ! Thank you. :)
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