FicCentral received a free copy of this book from The Romance Reviews.
Maddie’s pretty sure her luck can’t get any worse. Her cheat of an ex-boyfriend just got her fired, she’s got no prospects on the horizon, and her little sister is about to get married. That last part would be a good thing were it not for her cousin’s snide remarks and family’s unappreciated jokes about Maddie suffering from a supposed family curse when it comes to keeping a man. Humiliated and desperate, she finds a date through a service, hoping to shut everyone up and save some face. But her luck just got worse. Her “date” is her old high school nemesis.
The Verdict: Books like Wedding Date for Hire are like comfort food for me. The basic plot has been done before, I more or less know what to expect, and I’m rarely disappointed. There’s just something about these classic romance story lines that keeps me coming back, and this book in particular pulls it off in spectacular form.
Maddie’s definitely at a low point. Newly single and jobless, the last thing she wants to do is show up dateless at her little sister’s wedding, especially since her jerk of an ex is the best man. Her sister wants her to be happy, her cousin wants her to be miserable, and everyone’s getting a good laugh about some silly curse that apparently prevents the oldest girls in each generation from hanging onto a man. All Maddie wants to do is hang onto what’s left of her dignity, but that’s hard to do when everyone’s judging and pitying her. In a moment of desperation (and perhaps lunacy), she proudly informs everyone that she’s actually got a boyfriend — now she just needs to find someone to play the part.
Trent is successful in his own right, but when his cousin needs a stand-in for her dating service, he can’t say no. The last thing he expects, though, is to find out that his date is the very same girl he made miserable in high school, and with as much as she seems to despise him, it’s going to be hard to convince everyone that they’re a happy couple. But her can’t walk away, since his cousin is depending on him, and since he’s invested in her business, her failure is his problem, too.
While the general set-up is a romance novel standard, the execution is fresh and fun. Maddie’s internal voice had me cracking up from beginning to end, her frank and sarcastic observations adding a whole new dimension to the story. And where it would have been easy for Trent to just play along through the wedding, he’s a bit more complex than that. He’s no longer the immature guy he was in high school, and he’s immediately attracted to Maddie, so he sets out to win both her and her family over. Maddie doesn’t play along quite so nicely, but Trent’s pretty hard to resist. T.rent and Maddie both have some issues when it comes to relationships, things that make them a little hesitant to believe in happily ever after for themselves, but that’s what makes them such a great couple. It’s almost like they’re stumbling into love and falling into each other, and seeing them grow emotionally in that sense was a lot of fun.
Wedding Date for Hire is a delightfully fresh, funny, sweet love story, and the scenes play out like the perfect romantic comedy film. With well-developed characters, a classic story line, and lots of laughs along the way, it’s an ideal read for romance addicts.