Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Alphabet Soup Challenge: Catherine Bybee - Fiancé by Friday

Gwen Harrison:
The beautiful, high-born daughter of an English duke came to America to take over her sister-in-law’s matchmaking business. But just because she’s the boss doesn’t mean she can’t fantasize about making her own perfect match with bodyguard Neil MacBain. Will the enigmatic man who haunts her dreams cost her more than she bargained for?
Neil MacBain:
The retired Marine can’t deny the effect blue-blooded Gwen has on his troubled soul or his battle-hardened body. But as a client, Gwen is off-limits—until a threat from Neil’s past returns…and Gwen is caught in the crossfire. Now to keep her safe he will risk it all: his career, his life…and his heart.

Comment: This is the third installment in the Weekday Brides series by this author. I liked the previous two enough to want to read this one despite neither being such an amazing read. They were average good and interesting enough, so I've picked this one too.

This is Neil and Gwen's story. Neil is the friend and bodyguard of Blake, hero from book #1. Gwen is his sister. She has had feelings for Neil for a long time and since being in the US she hasn't been able to get him out of her head. Seeing her two friends Sam and Eliza marrying the man of their dreams makes her realize Neil might never acknowledge her feelings so she looks and looks but nothing happens.
Neil has had fantasies about Gwen but she's the sister of his boss and friend so he tries to see as a job. But now someone from his military past is trying to send him a message and Gwen might be in danger. But who's behind the dead ravens he finds and Gwen finds too?

The previous books weren't perfect but they had content amusing and entertaining enough to keep me interested in reading them. I hoped the same for this one but that didn't happen.

First of all, one thing about the author's style: this author is one of those who sets the next story in the current one, meaning we see many scenes with the next main character and a bit of the setting up of their story. This happened to Gwen and Neil on the previous book and when this book begun w already knew all about the looks they sent each other when the other wasn't looking and how it seemed there was something between them.
As another character feature so much in this story, obviously the next book will be about her.
Now, why does this matter, well, it's a good tool to make the reader interested in reading more because then we'd know the character and there would be something engaging that makes us want to read. It's actually smart but in this author's case, twice I've seen how promising the next story will be, there are scenes that are done well enough to be captivating but then the actual story isn't as good as that. A bit of a letdown to be honest. So, I don't know if I'll read more and if i ever do it won't be so soon.

Anyway, the key plot of this book is Gwen and Neil's relationship and the problems around Neil's past experience with the military.
The plot surrounding Neil was a cliché and honestly I wasn't that interested because somehow it didn't strike me as that emotional. Maybe the way it was told or my state of mind, but the truth is, I was bored with the story and didn't really care about it. The bad guys weren't that hard to figure out and their motivations same old.
As for the romance, I also expected much more. The way they acted in the other books I expected fireworks and more challenging takes on what was happening between them but their romance lacked excitement, a little more angst and heartfelt emotions. I don't know, it wasn't mesmerizing and again, I found it boring. Their intimacy also didn't seem the finally moment all the scenes before would indicate and after all things considered neither personality seemed strong enough to support their romance much less the overall plot.

After such a reading experience I don't find myself eager to read more so soon like I said. I was a bit disappointed in how this book was told, how things happened. I don't know, but it felt like a weaker story for me.
Still, in terms of series, it has its positive details like the appearance and importance of secondary characters, those know and those to know.
Grade: 5/10

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