Monday, October 21, 2013

Maybe I Love You - A Review of A Perfect Match by Kristan Higgins


THE PERFECT MATCH November 2013 

A Blue Heron Novel 
“Charm, laugh-out-loud humor and, most of all, Higgins’s genius-level IQ 
about people and love.” —USA TODAY on Until There Was You 

“Romance fans and lovers of women’s fiction will devour this witty and tender novel. 
Highly recommended.” —Library Journal, starred review on Somebody to Love 

Is it really possible for a modern day marriage of convenience to end in true love?  New York Times and USA Today bestselling author and two-time RITA® Award winner Kristan Higgins brings her signature whipsmart dialogue and endearing characters to a charming, new novel—THE PERFECT MATCH (HQN Books, November 2013, $7.99 U.S./$9.99 CAN.)—the second book in her wildly popular Blue Heron series. 

Thirty-five-year-old Honor Holland has been unceremoniously, and unexpectedly, dumped by her lifelong crush. The man she’s daydreamed about since high school. The man she imagined walking down the aisle with until just moments before he broke her heart. And now—a mere three weeks later—her ex is engaged to her best friend. 

But resilient, reliable Honor is going to pick herself up, dust herself off and get back out there—or she would, if dating in Manningsport, New York, population 715, wasn’t easier said than done. Not to mention the fact that she doesn’t exactly have a lot of time for dating. Running the family vineyard keeps her traveling or at the office all hours of the day (and night). Not exactly a schedule conducive to romance.

Charming, handsome Briton Tom Barlow just wants to do right by his unofficial stepson, Charlie, but his employer has declined to sponsor Tom’s work visa. Now Tom must either get a green card or leave the States and leave Charlie behind. The only solution Tom can see is to marry a United States citizen, and as luck would have it, he knows a woman vivacious and intriguing enough to make the plan seem possible. And it just so happens she was just dumped. 

Suddenly, a marriage of convenience doesn’t seem like such a bad option for Honor.  In an impulsive moment, she agrees to help Tom—and make her ex jealous in the process. But as their pretend marriage begins to feel quite realistic, the stakes get higher and the two might be surprised to find out they’ve found in each other THE PERFECT MATCH.... 

Thank you to Netgalley, Harlequin, and Kristan Higgins for offering an ARC in exchange for a fair and honest review.

The Story...

When Brogan and Dana suddenly get engaged, Honor Holland loses not only the love of her life, but also her best friend.  When her doctor reminds her that when it comes to her eggs "the years are precious" and a barroom cat fight causes her family to redistribute her duties with the family wine business, calm, reliable Honor suddenly finds herself panicking.

After being informed that the university will not be renewing his work visa, British professor Tom Barlow begins to look at other, quicker means of staying in the United States.  His unofficial stepson may not be speaking to him, but Tom feels that it is necessary to stay in Manningsport to be near in case Charlie needs him. 

Honor's grandmother and Tom's great-aunt attempt to set them up, but on their first meeting, Tom let his nerves and the whiskey get the better of him.
"Your hair's quite different, isn't it?  Looks better.  That sister-wife thing was a bit off-putting.  Also, there's less for people to grab if you get into another fight.  Very practical of you.  So, shall we get married?"
But as Goggy, Honor's grandmother, says, 
"You want to be married, or you want to be happy?"
Honor agrees to marry Tom and moves in with him.  Actually making plans and taking the necessary steps toward the wedding seems a lot harder to manage.  The spark and attraction that pushed them together when they first met has suddenly left the building.  Can Honor and Tom find what is missing?  Can they fool the government agent who has come to investigate their relationship?  Can they survive when Honor's lifelong crush decides that he wants her after all?

What Worked...

There's a Brit.  And he boxes.  Shirtless.  What's not to love?  Plus he says things like,
"Are you drunk?"  Honor asked.
"Please," he said.  "I'm British.  The proper word is pissed." 
Honor and Tom's relationship is real.  The miscommunications and missed opportunities are such a part of married life, it's like they are already married.  

The Holland family is an amazing group of characters.  They are unique and often odd, but they love each other and that makes the story stronger and more authentic.

My favorite relationship in this story had to be between Tom and Honor's dog, Spike.
The rat peeked out of the bag and bared its teeth.  Ah.  It was a dog, he was almost positive.

What Didn't...

Honor's aging eggs had a habit of talking to her, which was cute at first but soon had me considering finding a padded cell for Honor.

I love the wit and comfort of reading Kristan Higgins' stories.  She connects to something deep within me and never fails to make me smile and stay up late trying to read just one more chapter.

Four out of Five Stars.

Kristan Higgins

New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling 
author and two-time winner of the Romance 
Writers of America RITA® Award, Kristan lives 
with her family in a small Connecticut town that 
boasts a wonderful library, a great agricultural 
fair, a really good ice-cream stand and not much 
else. She is the mother of two lovely kids and 
the wife of a brave firefighter who is also 
(perhaps more important) a fantastic cook. 

Previously a copywriter, Kristan began writing 
fiction when her children graced her life with 
simultaneous afternoon naps. Writing, she 
found, was infinitely more satisfying than folding laundry, and so began her first novel. Kristan 
holds a B.A. in English from the College of the Holy Cross, which means she can identify dangling participles, quote many great novels and play a mean game of Scrabble. 

Kristan is an award-winning baker, devoted fan of the New York Yankees and an avid reader. She and her crew spend as much time as possible at the family home on Cape Cod, where they shiver in the Atlantic, ride bikes, swat horseflies and don’t catch any fish.

You can see Kristan's recipe for Finger Lakes Grape Pie (inspired by her research for THE PERFECT MATCH) HERE.


The Perfect Match on Goodreads
Kristan Higgins Website
Kristan Higgins on Twitter
Kristan Higgins on Facebook

Maybe I Love You by Lenka

I knew I liked you, I knew I cared 
And I knew that something was brewing in the air 
But I don't fall easily to many betrayed me
But maybe I love you, maybe I do 
Maybe this feeling inside me is true 
And if I love you and if I do 
Then maybe baby, maybe you love me too

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