Quietly adorable, laidback, and a sweet, feel good read, this was just what I needed. It’s more understated than a lot of this author’s work, leaning into its charming, heartfelt feel, but the story is exactly the kind that I like in a small town romance. These two are childhood friends who lost track of each other until recently, and their very adult selves might just fit perfectly – whether that works for their current plans or not. They’re both genuinely good people who openly care for each other, and the angst is kept at a minimum. It’s got a touch of sexiness and only a little steam, instead focusing on the emotional connection and the small town lifestyle. I enjoyed it the whole way through, and while this wasn’t a standout read for me, it was a sweet dose of low angst goodness.
The story follows Sophie and Holden, two people who flirted with making the shift from friends to lovers during their youth, but never seized the opportunity. When Holden returns to town following the end of his engagement and the loss of his job, he’s feeling adrift. And Sophie has her own issues – her bed and breakfast is undergoing renovations, and the debt her ex left her with is coming due. A marriage of convenience seems like the solution to both of their problems, but neither one expects it to come with its own complications. Sophie and Holden’s marriage might be temporary, but the feelings they’re developing are starting to feel very permanent.
This is definitely a different vibe from the author, and I enjoyed the laidback feel. I’ve read several of her small town romances in the past, and this is probably the sweetest, easiest one. It’s low angst and high feels, bringing the sweetness and the quiet, slow burn. There’s actually very little in terms of heat, though there’s one SEXY scene and obvious chemistry throughout. I loved how these two transitioned from friends to lovers, and I loved that there was no major angst. It felt natural and authentic, which is a definite plus. We’re also introduced to Sophie’s siblings, and I’m intrigued by their stories. The small town feel was really working for me, so we’ll see where this series goes next. I received an early copy via NetGalley, and am voluntarily leaving a review of this marriage of convenience romance.
Two childhood friends are playing house—and maybe playing for keeps—in USA Today bestselling author Adriana Locke’s funny, sexy, and unpredictable marriage-of-convenience romance.
To save her Tennessee bed-and-breakfast, Sophie Bates needs a fast-cash miracle. Holden McKenzie, her childhood best friend, needs to prove to a prospective employer that he’s a committed man. Their fortunes on the line, Holden proposes…a solution.
He’ll take care of Sophie’s bills if she agrees to a temporary marriage of convenience. And why not? They’re comfortable together, they have fun, and they trust each other. It’s as simple as saying “I do.” But the off-the-cuff wedding has all of Honey Creek talking—and Sophie and Holden realizing that their perfect arrangement is working too well. If they’re not careful, this marriage could turn into a love story.
About the Author:
Adriana Locke is a USA Today bestselling author who lives and breathes books. After years of slightly obsessive relationships with the flawed bad boys created by other authors, Adriana created her own with such series as Dogwood Lane, The Gibson Boys, and The Landry Family.
She resides in the Midwest with her husband, sons, two dogs, two cats, and a bird. She spends a large amount of time playing with her kids, drinking coffee, and cooking. You can find her outside if the weather’s nice, and there’s always a piece of candy in her pocket.
Besides cinnamon gummy bears, boxing, and random quotes, her next favorite thing is chatting with readers. She’d love to hear from you! Visit the author at www.adrianalocke.com.
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