Series: Wedding Belles

Review: To Love and to Cherish by Lauren Layne

Posted October 20, 2016 by Rowena in Reviews | 3 Comments

Review: To Love and to Cherish by Lauren LayneReviewer: Rowena
To Love and to Cherish (Wedding Belles #3) by Lauren Layne
Series: Wedding Belles #3
Also in this series: From This Day Forward (Wedding Belles #0.5), To Have and to Hold (Wedding Belles #1), For Better or Worse (Wedding Belles #2)
Published by Simon & Schuster, Pocket Books
Publication Date: October 18th 2016
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 320
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
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four-stars

Sex and the City meets The Wedding Planner in The Wedding Belles, a contemporary and witty romance series about three high-powered New York City women who can plan any wedding—but their own.

Alexis Morgan has spent the past eight years devoted to turning her tiny start-up into Manhattan’s premiere wedding planning company, The Wedding Belles. Now that her business is thriving, it’s time to turn towards her much neglected personal life, and Alexis approaches her relationships like she does everything else: with a plan. Not a part of that plan is Logan Harris, the silent partner in the Belles, and the one person who’s been there for her since the very beginning. But Alexis needs someone fun, and Logan’s all business, all the time—except when a late night at the office ends with an unexpected kiss that leaves the usually cool and together Alexis reeling.

Logan has lusted after Alexis since the day he walked into the tiny Harlem apartment that used to double as her office. But the ambitious wedding planner has always been untouchable...until now. Alexis has made it clear that she’s on the dating market—and equally clear that he’s not in the running. But when Alexis finds herself in need of a date for her sister’s last minute wedding in Florida, Logan knows it’s the perfect time to show Alexis that there’s more to him than numbers and spreadsheets—and beneath the pinstripes and glasses lies a hot-blooded heartthrob. As Florida’s sultry days turn into even hotter nights, Logan’s out to convince Alexis that the fling of a lifetime could just maybe turn into forever...

As soon as this book hit my inbox, I was all smiles because…finally. Alexis and Logan. It feels like I’ve been waiting FOREVER for this book even though it’s only been a few months. That’s how anxious I was for this book.

Logan has had a serious thing for Alexis Morgan for years. His love for her has gone unnoticed for all of those years and in this book, Logan is fed up. He’s fed up with Alexis being blind to him as a man and he’s fed up with loving someone who doesn’t seem to love him back. Changes need to be made and things need to be shaken up and Logan is more than ready to toss things up in the air and see where they land….especially after he gets a call from his father with the news that he is going to retire and Logan needs to pack his shit up and come home to take over.

Logan knows that he’s stayed away from home for all of these years because of Alexis. She wasn’t ready for him and his feelings back then but things are different now. Logan needs to make some life plans and he needs to figure out where Alexis fits into those plans. Will he continue to be her accountant or will she come to realize that they were meant to be together forever.

Alexis’ past has caught up to her and running away from it and them isn’t a choice anymore. She spent so much of the last few years trying to move on from the hurts of the past that she didn’t realize how big and strong those walls around her are. Things are changing and closing in on her and she really can’t handle much more change so when Logan, the most constant companion and friend she’s had in the last 8 years starts changing their rules on her, she’s really thrown for a loop. She’s kept Logan at arms length because the risk of losing him was high and she couldn’t bear to lose him. The business has always been there for her and has always been the priority but over the course of her story, you see her realize that while the business will always be a priority, it didn’t have to be the only priority.

Lauren Layne has fast become my go to author for fun contemporary romances. She has consistently written books that I have loved and each book in this series has been fantastic. These characters have wormed their way into my heart and taken up residence there. I love all of them and I’m low key hoping that Jessie gets a story of her own because she was just as much a part of the Wedding Belles as Brooke, Heather and Alexis.

There was much to love about this book. Alexis and Logan fumbling their way through and finding their way to each other made for a great reading adventure but the friendships between the Belles and then the boys were great fun too. I want to be a part of their circle of friends. This was another fabulous addition to Layne’s back list and its one that I’ll re-read again and again because Logan is full of yum! I definitely recommend this book. It’s great!

Grade: 4.25 out of 5

four-stars


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Review: For Better or Worse by Lauren Layne

Posted September 2, 2016 by Rowena in Reviews | 3 Comments

Review: For Better or Worse by Lauren LayneReviewer: Rowena
For Better or Worse (Wedding Belles #2) by Lauren Layne
Series: Wedding Belles #2
Also in this series: From This Day Forward (Wedding Belles #0.5), To Have and to Hold (Wedding Belles #1), To Love and to Cherish (Wedding Belles #3)
Published by Pocket Books
Publication Date: August 30th 2016
Pages: 368
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four-half-stars

Will a budding wedding planner and her bad boy neighbor stop banging heads and start hearing wedding bells in the sexy second novel in USA TODAY bestselling author Lauren Layne’s irresistible new series that marries Sex and the City with The Wedding Planner?

When small-town girl Heather Fowler finally gets promoted from assistant to actual wedding planner, she’s determined to make it as one of Manhattan’s elite Wedding Belles. Unfortunately, her first client demands an opulent black-tie affair at the Plaza…in five months’ time. Heather’s days quickly become a flurry of cake tastings, dress-fittings, RSVP cards, and bridal tantrums. But what she’s really losing sleep over is the live music blaring from her playboy neighbor’s apartment all night.

Five years ago, Josh Tanner was an up-and-comer on Wall Street, complete with the penthouse and the migraines. But a grim cancer diagnosis made him realize there is more to life than the corner office. If only he could convince his pretty, workaholic neighbor to let loose, too. As Heather lets down her guard, Josh is surprised when he starts falling for the sweet, vulnerable woman hiding beneath those power suits. Soon, it’s Heather’s turn to convince Josh to take the biggest risk of all: love.

Lauren Layne has cemented herself on my favorites shelf. She has consistently written fantastic contemporary romances that have rocked my socks and For Better or Worse is no different. This book had it all, a steamy romance with characters that warmed my heart and a hot hero who is a complete flirty spice which is seriously my jam.

I have no complaints. Well, just one and that is the book ended. I didn’t want it to end. This was a fast and flirty ride that I loved to pieces.

Heather is and assistant wedding planner with her eyes set on the promotion that is just around the corner. She’s been working toward becoming a wedding planner her entire life and she’s thrilled that the title is within reach. She works for the highly sought after Wedding Belles and her wedding planning firm has just been hired to work on a Kim Kardashian like celebrity’s wedding and Heather has been given the green light to plan her little heart out. Only thing is, the bride doesn’t want to have anything to do with the planning. She’s confused as crap about that and as time goes on, she becomes frustrated as all get out but she’s determine to nail this job because she wants to drop the assistant from her job title.

It’s hard enough to work on a wedding where the bride wants no input and yet wants you to deliver the wedding of a lifetime but when you’ve got a noisy neighbor that keeps you up all night with his constant band practice and loud guests, nerves are going to be shot and Heather’s nerves are definitely shot.

It’s no surprise that she can’t stand her neighbor and her neighbor? He loves that he gets on her nerves. Josh Tanner is living the life. He does what he wants day in and day out, he goes wherever he wants to go and he rocks out with his band whenever he feels like it much to his neighbor’s chagrin. She likes to come banging on his door to tell him to shut up and every time she does, he gets excited. He looks forward to bickering with his neighbor because she’s one hot piece of action that he wants to have…but when the relationship he doesn’t want to have starts becoming more real with each passing day, Josh has to decide if Heather is worth telling all of his secrets to.

There wasn’t much that I didn’t enjoy about this book. I loved Josh. I loved Heather. I loved the Belles and seeing Seth and Brooke again. I loved the bromance that is forming between Josh, Seth and Logan and really, I just love all things Lauren Layne. I’m probably starting to sound like a broken record but hot damn, she writes my kind of romances. The fun and flirty romances that has me happy sighing all over the place. Josh was a great hero and I adored his family and that meddling Mom of his. His whole secret wasn’t hard to figure out but that’s okay because everything else was fan-fricking-tastic.

If you’re looking for a good reading time, pick this one up. It’s my favorite of the series so far. I cannot wait for Logan and Alexis. It needs to be October already. Kudos to Lauren Layne for another home run.

Grade: 4.5 out of 5

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four-half-stars


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Review: To Have and to Hold by Lauren Layne

Posted July 27, 2016 by Rowena in Reviews | 3 Comments

Review: To Have and to Hold by Lauren LayneReviewer: Rowena
To Have and to Hold (Wedding Belles #1) by Lauren Layne
Series: Wedding Belles #1
Also in this series: From This Day Forward (Wedding Belles #0.5), For Better or Worse (Wedding Belles #2), To Love and to Cherish (Wedding Belles #3)
Published by Simon & Schuster
Publication Date: July 26th 2016
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 384
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
four-stars

USA TODAY bestselling author Lauren Layne is the “queen of witty dialogue and sexy scenes” (Rachel Van Dyken)! Now, Sex and the City meets The Wedding Planner in The Wedding Belles, her sizzling brand new contemporary romance series about three ambitious wedding planners who can make any bride’s dream come true…but their own.

Discovering her fiancé is an international con man just moments before they exchange vows devastates celebrity wedding planner Brooke Baldwin’s business—and breaks her heart. Now a pariah in Los Angeles, she seeks a fresh start in New York City and thinks she’s found it with her first bridal client, a sweet—if slightly spoiled—hotel heiress. Then she meets the uptight businessman who’s holding the purse strings.

Seth Tyler wishes he could write a blank check and be done with his sister Maya's fancy-pants wedding. Unfortunately, micromanaging the event is his only chance at proving Maya’s fiancé is a liar. Standing directly in his way is the stunning blonde wedding planner whose practiced smiles and sassy comebacks both irritate and arouse him. He needs Brooke’s help.

But can he persuade a wedding planner on a comeback mission to unplan a wedding? And more importantly, how will he convince her that the wedding she should be planning…is theirs?

I’ve said this before but I’ll say it again. Lauren Layne has fast become one of my favorite go to author for fabulous contemporary romances and she didn’t disappoint with the first book in her new Wedding Belles series. I was wrapped up tight in this story from beginning to end and I enjoyed the entire ride.

Seth Tyler’s sister is getting married to a guy that she just met and Seth doesn’t trust his soon to be brother in law. Seth and his sister Maya are the heir and heiress to the Tyler hotel riches and it’s not a surprise that Seth thinks Neil, Maya’s new out of nowhere fiancé is after the family riches. He’s got no proof of anything shady, just his gut feeling and after meeting Neil, his spidey senses are on high alert.

After a disastrous wedding that didn’t happen, Brooke left the West Coast for the chilly winters of New York City. Her disastrous wedding that didn’t happen wrecked her wedding planning career in Los Angeles so she’s hoping to take her services to New York City and start up the process of building her work reputation up again. Her first wedding in New York is Maya Tyler’s wedding to Neil Garrett and things would be going fine if it weren’t for Maya’s meddling and grumpy older brother, holder of the family purse strings, Seth. He’s not a fan of the idea that his little sister is marrying someone after knowing them for such a short time. He’s controlling and he quite frankly, gets on Brooke’s nerves. The more time that he spends hovering over Maya’s shoulder, the more fun he’s taking out of Maya’s pre-wedding experiences and Brooke is not having that. If that means she’ll have to meet with him weekly to keep him apprised of everything going on so that he won’t be there and then do a little snooping for him, she’ll do it. She’ll do it for Maya because Maya deserves to be happy during the happy times.

These meetings between Seth and Brooke are fraught with sexual chemistry and the heat between them singed my iPad with each passing page. I loved the way that their romance built up until they were both consumed with each other and their feelings. Their romance wasn’t perfect but it was interesting and entertaining and I was right there with the both of them as they tried and tried again to get things right.

There were times when they both got on my nerves with their bullheadedness over every little thing but in the end, they both won me over and I closed this book with a smile on my face.

I loved Seth. Even when he was being a complete dickhead and messing things up for everyone in his personal life, I loved him. I loved the controlling dumbass because at the root of everything, his intentions were good and even though I wish he had listened to both Brooke and Grant, he came around in the end and I truly felt like he learned from his mistakes. That was some grand gesture too. Total swoon-worthy move that only a freaking billionaire could make. Took me right to my happy place. I loved it.

Brooke was a great heroine as well. She was strong and she was independent and even though I thought it was a little soon for her to be moving on after her disrupted wedding, I came around to the idea because had it been me? I would have jumped Seth’s bone after two weeks instead of three months. LOL.

Overall, this was fun and it was flirty and it was everything that I love about reading a Lauren Layne book. Seth and Brooke were a great main couple and the lead up to Heather’s book was great too. I can’t wait to dig into Heather’s book and meet her noisy hot neighbor. This series started off on a great note with From this Day Forward and it continued to entertain me with this one so I’m on board for it all. Bring on Heather and Alexis. I want them!

Grade: 4.25 out of 5

four-stars


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Review: From this Day Forward by Lauren Layne

Posted June 7, 2016 by Rowena in Reviews | 1 Comment

Review: From this Day Forward by Lauren LayneReviewer: Rowena
From This Day Forward (Wedding Belles #0.5) by Lauren Layne
Series: Wedding Belles #0.5
Also in this series: To Have and to Hold (Wedding Belles #1), For Better or Worse (Wedding Belles #2), To Love and to Cherish (Wedding Belles #3)
Published by Simon & Schuster, Pocket Star
Publication Date: June 6th 2016
Pages: 128
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads

Sex and the City meets The Wedding Planner in this prequel to USA TODAY bestselling author Lauren Layne’s The Wedding Belles series about three high-powered New York City women who can plan any wedding—but their own.

Up-and-coming wedding photographer Leah McHale’s career is on the rise–thanks in no small part to the Wedding Belles, the elite New York wedding planning agency that always throws top-tier business Leah’s way. So when one of the Belles asks Leah to fill in at the former First Daughter's wedding, Leah is overjoyed to say yes–until she finds out who she’ll be working with.

Jason Rhodes is the one man who was able to capture Leah’s heart and, once he had it, promptly stepped all over it and left her broken. Now he’s working side-by-side with her at the biggest wedding of the season and Leah is determined to give him the cold shoulder. Despite his persistence, she is not going to fall for his charming, impish ways again. Not even if he still has that killer, irresistible smile...

This was a quick but enjoyable romance that set up the Wedding Belles series pretty darned well. For such a short story, I didn’t feel like Jason and Leah were robbed of a full length novel. Their story was short but sweet and I’m looking forward to more from these characters.

Jason Rhodes and Leah McHale had a thing good thing going last year but when Leah shows up at Jason’s house and a woman answers the door wearing the shirt that Leah bought for Jason, she bolts because she aint no fool and Jason is obviously cheating on her!

Jason tries to explain but Leah doesn’t want to hear it. There’s nothing he can say that will change what she saw with her own eyes so Leah dodges his phone calls, his messages and she tries to move on with her life but when they’re thrown together on a work project, Leah can’t avoid him. Jason still wants Leah as much as he’s always wanted her but he’s pissed at her for bolting without hearing him out. He thought they had a good thing going but she wouldn’t even let him explain anything and he’s tired of being the guy that everyone suspects of all bad things first.

I thought Jason did a great job of winning Leah back and even though I was a little peeved at Leah for not even trying to hear him out (for over a year!), the way that they came together was sweet and for such a short romance, the romance was just as steamy as if this was a full length story. It was a delightful introduction to a series that I’m looking forward to. I recommend!

Grade: 4 out of 5


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