Wedding planner Caroline Duplessis sinks all her hopes, dreams and finances for the future success of her budding company Weddings Divine into the event of the year.
But when Brandon D’Estrahan’s intended leaves him at the altar, she also leaves Caroline holding enough debt that her fledgling company is on the edge of bankruptcy. And the second mortgage her parents took out on their home will leave them homeless.
So when the groom, who needs an arm ornament and hostess to further his business connections, proposes a way out, Caroline sees no other option but to take it.
Marriage to him for one year and she will walk away with financial security. But will their marriage last the year?
Or, like his former fiancee’, will she find the need to leave him, too?
I so appreciate that the author understood that a book under 200 pages really doesn’t need a lot of useless fillers. She started telling this story on page one and had me hooked. Caroline runs her own wedding planning business in New Orleans. The only way for an outsider to make it is to win over the high socialites and their friends. She thought she had with what was considered the biggest wedding of the century. All of her plans for her future and her parents’ house were at risk. When the unthinkable happens on the day of the wedding, there was nowhere for her to go for help, except the office of Brandon, New Orleans most sought after bachelor.
Brandon has his own high profile business that leaves him highly misunderstood in society. His sexy looks also make him the target of single women who stand outside his office with signs begging him to marry them. He sees the only way to make his business appear above board and taken seriously is to get married. When Caroline walks in his office with her request, he saw a way to not only solve her problems but solve his too, they needed to get married.
With a contract in place, rules set out, restrictions understood; all that was left was to say I do. The problem is, real feelings started to emerge in both but one of them refused to acknowledge them till it was too late. The whole book was pleasant to read and moved fast, the characters were developed so well it was easy to relate to them. While Caroline knew that she was going to give up her first marriage for this contract, she kept her dignity, even when her friends accused her of things because they didn’t understand.
Brandon could have been written as a jerk and I am sure some readers would think that, but I felt she gave us the real man, who was limited in options because of how society looked at him. No one saw the real Brandon, until Caroline came along. I really recommend this book as a great evening read, it is relaxing, charming, engaging and pleasant to read.
“The wedding is off,” Brandon D’Estrehan announced as dispassionately as if he were ordering a cup of coffee. “My apologies for the inconvenience.”
For the hundredth time in two days, Caroline Duplessis pushed Replay on the DVD player to study the video of the world’s most respected and feared international corporate raider calling off his wedding from the altar rail.
The wedding photographer in the vestibule had picked up his deep baritone clearly in the huge St. Louis Cathedral in the heart of New Orleans’ French Quarter. D’Estrehan had looked over the diamond-bedecked crowd as stoic as if his face were chiseled from the same stone his heart must have been carved from.
Caroline zoomed in to study his eyes. No blink. No flicker. Nothing but black irises in dark brown pupils staring out over the distinguished well-wishers.
Ruthless. They had called him cold-blooded and ruthless as they filed out of the church.
Caroline just called him dream killer.
Books have always been Connie Cox’s passion. Many thanks to her mom for that! Connie used to think authors were sophisticated creatures who lived in NYC, went to glitzy parties and wrote as the muse dictated. Then she met one. The writer looked a lot like her-jeans, a few extra pounds, a love of books and a quirky imagination.
Connie’s newfound love for running is taking care of the extra pounds. Her fascination with Jungian psychology takes care of her story lines. And her innate wild imagination does the rest.
People fascinate Connie, especially people who fall in love. Writing romance novels gives Connie the freedom (a lot of freedom!)to explore the chemistry that brings lovers together. It’s an exploration Connie takes seriously as she looks into that sexual spark that turns two singles into a couple. Her story people really have to work hard for that coupling as she sends her characters on a journey of discovery both within themselves and in each other. But the happily ever after makes the journey worth it. And there are often a few laughs along the way.
So why does Connie write? Because, now that she’s discovered the magic of letting loose the people in her imagination, she’s impossible to be around if she doesn’t let them have their way!
With many thanks for the encouragement of that first writer and many who have followed behind her, Connie now lives the dream, writing big stories from her little desk in her little Louisiana town. Even as you read this, she is working on a new story and living her own happily ever after.