Friday, December 21, 2012

Book Review: Married By Christmas

Author: Scarlett Bailey
Publication Date: October 25, 2012
Publisher: Ebury

The countdown to her winter wedding has begun...

Anna Carter wants the perfect Christmas Eve wedding. It's been on her 'to-do' list since she was a little girl stuck living in a children's home and dreaming of a far happier family life than she'd ever experienced. Now she's found the perfect Georgian country manor as a venue, to which she will be taken in a reindeer-drawn sleigh. She's got a show-stopping designer ivory-beaded wedding dress.

And she's even found her groom. Three years ahead of schedule, funny, sexy, handsome journalist, Tom, had swept her off her feet.

Only, now, two weeks before the wedding, Tom drops a bombshell that threatens to ruin everything.

But nothing is going to stop Anna's plans - not even the pesky inconvenience of discovering her perfect husband-to-be already has a wife

“Chalk and cheese they might be, but Liv knew Anna would do anything for her, and she would do the same for her, no matter what it cost her.” – Paperback Copy pg. 17

“‘But…’ Liv had said heavily last New Year’s Eve. ‘If you take on organizing every aspect of your own wedding with the same crazy controlling freakery you do everything else, you will literally explode. Take it as read that I’ll help you. You just need to concentrate on the things that really matter. Like getting drunk with your oldest friend in about an hour’s time?’” – Paperback Copy pg. 25

“‘I know and I will.’ Martha smiled. ‘But it’s going to take a lot longer than a week to get you out of this mess, sweetie. Look, I’m sorry, guys, I really am, but you have to face up to the facts. Your fairy-tale Christmas wedding? It’s off.’” – Paperback Copy pg. 61

“Because…even though I still love him, if I look at his stupid stripper-marrying face right now I might kill him, and then I’ll go to prison and the dress will definitely go to waste, and the reindeer keeper won’t get his Christmas bonus and he’s using it to buy his son a PlayStation, that’s why. I’m thinking of the reindeer keeper’s son.” – Paperback Copy pg. 68 & 69

“Anna took a deep breath. ‘I’ve planned a Christmas wedding Tom, a Christmas wedding, exactly like the one I first talked about the very last night that I spent with my mother when I was nine years old. You know, don’t you, how much this means to me, that I didn’t just pick this date out of thin air? You get that, don’t you? I’ve booked reindeers, Tom! Reindeers!’” – Paperback Copy pg. 72

Anna has dreamed of a Christmas wedding all her life. And she plans to stop at nothing to make it happen this year. She and her groom are deeply in love, her best friend is helping her coordinate what is sure to be the wedding of the year, she has five thousand lists that she is checking off one by one, and she even has Reindeer, yes, Reindeer! Everything is in order for our over achieving Anna, until she finds out that Tom isn’t quite who she thought he was, and this isn’t exactly his first marriage. He isn’t divorced and this puts a big damper on her Christmas Eve wedding. She ultimately goes into a huge panic and vows that she will have this Christmas wedding, just the way she has always planned it.

I laughed. So much. I am not exaggerating when I say that Anna was my favorite character and so many of her one liners had me chuckling at twelve o’clock last night. She was such an over-achiever and went by her lists like they were her religion. Everything was precise about her and you always knew what you were going to get. When she found out that the man she was supposed to marry had already been married before, and to a stripper no doubt, her big concern was the reindeer that she had already booked for her wedding. I just thought this was hysterical. I liked the twist in the story and it was nice to see a character like Anna go out of her comfort zone in order to make her wedding dreams become a reality.

The storyline was so charming and easy to keep up with; it carried a very nice pace throughout the entire book. This was my first read by Scarlett Bailey and I am hooked. She has the ability to throw the slightest twists into the story to grab you that much more. I loved the romance aspect of the book, but it took me until the second half of the book to really get into that scene. Tom was not the ideal groom, at least in my eyes, and I just did not enjoy my character. Then when Anna meets Miles I thought to myself, this is more like it! I loved Miles and I don’t want to spoil too much about his role in the story because I wouldn’t have wanted it to be spoiled for me either.

I really wanted to get this book read by Christmas and I am so glad that I sat down last night to finish it. The story is set in New York at Christmastime and this is on my list of things to see and do before I die. I have heard that New York at Christmas is completely jaw-dropping and it seemed that way in Anna’s story as well. If you have time at all this holiday season to sit down and read, then I will greatly recommend this book to you!

***Thank you to the publishers at Ebury for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review***

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