I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Published by Macmillan on March 3rd 2015
Genres: Contemporary, Fiction, General, Romance
Buy on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, The Book Depository
Also by this author: Win Me Over
WHY DO DO-IT-YOURSELF…Single mom Anne Edmond can handle—and hand-make—just about anything. From table settings to party favors, floral arrangements to nursery décor, there is no project her creativity and a glue gun can’t tackle. But dating? That’s a whole ’nother story. Case in point: Mike Everett. He’s a gorgeous mechanic and known car-whisperer, a man who can work with auto parts like nobody’s business. And he has thrown a monkey wrench into Anne’s carefully-crafted life… WHEN YOU CAN DO IT TOGETHER? One look at Anne is enough for Mike to know that she’s no fixer-upper. She’s perfect just the way she is—and the chemistry between them works like a charm. Mike’s always been a no-strings kind of guy, but Anne’s impressive self-reliance—and gorgeous exterior—gives him pause. This time, a fast joyride just doesn’t seem like enough. But first he has to convince Anne that he means to take her all the way…
This is a cute, and at times steamy, story. I enjoyed the characters and the way they interacted together. I felt like I couldn’t really get a firm grasp on the timeline, and at times it felt a little rushed.
I adore Anne. She is divorced and definitely doesn’t think very highly of her self. Her self-esteem issues and want for more in her love life make her such a relatable character. You want her to succeed in everything that she does. She’s devoted to her daughter is terrified of letting her or her daughter get too attached. Mike is absolutely dreamy. He is an amazing uncle and Anne has completely flipped his switch. He has never been one to stick around for more than one night, but after meeting Anne he wants to get to know her.
I loved seeing these two characters together. Even with trying to feel everything out there was an easy banter with them. Some of the things they do are absolutely dream date worthy, and others are a little naughty. It’s a perfect mix to any relationship.
I enjoyed this book, and will definitely be reading more by this author.
“Oh sweetie, what the hell were you thinking?” Cal- lie’s incredulous and pity-filled tone was the final straw. “The park? That is so not hot.”
Anne leaned forward before getting hysterical. “Yes, the park! I’m an idiot, I know. A hot, muscly, young— too young I’m sure—totally sexy guy came to my party and I asked him to go to the fucking park . . . with me and my child. What the hell is wrong with me?”
She had whispered the last bit since she didn’t want Claire to hear her cursing. Anne rarely cursed—usually only after speaking to her ex or in very drastic or trau- matizing situations. This was one of the latter. She was trying hard not to picture him, disheveled dark hair and hard biceps. The way his jeans had ridden low on his hips like he’d just rolled out of a big manly bed and thrown them on. He was celebrity-level hot, built as solid as an athlete, and the deep blue of his eyes had made her a little crazy. Why she had ever thought he would
say yes to such an outrageous offering was beyond rea- son.
“He didn’t look that young, but I’m gonna assume he said no since we’re having this conversation.”
“Of course he said no, Cal. Look at me! I’m a chubby mommy who corrected his colors. ‘No, Mr. Hottest Guy Who Has Ever Stepped Into My Home, that is not pink, it’s raspberry thank you very much, and here’s your grown-up drink with a goddamn straw. By the way, how does a playdate sound?’” Anne was completely exasperated and furious with herself. She should have known just by looking at him that there was no way he was interested. “He was probably thinking I was the most ridiculous woman he’d ever encountered. Why Callie, why?”
“Good grief, Anne, don’t be so hard on yourself. I’m proud of you for putting yourself out there. It was good practice, don’t be discouraged. Next time just . . . don’t mention parks and invite small children. Right?” Cal- lie stood up and grabbed the towel to dry the rest of the dishes.
“Thanks for the encouragement, but that was scarring. I don’t ask guys out, and this is why. I don’t even meet guys. I plan parties for people under the age of eighteen, which usually only involves married men or grand- fathers.”
“Hey, don’t knock it,” Callie said with a laugh. Anne shot her a dirty look. Callie continued, “You know I’m teasing. Listen, it’s Saturday night, which means I have really big plans, but I think Downton Abbey and my newest bottle of Moscato will forgive me if I’m a little late.”
Callie grabbed the leftover bottle of sparkling wine, a glass, and a cupcake. She set them down on the table in front of Anne. “Why don’t you take these, draw a bubble bath, and drink your worries away while I take Claire to the park to burn off the excitement of receiving eight new Barbies.”
Anne slumped into the chair again. “I love you.” “And I love you. We may stop by Tomatillos for some
unhealthy dinner. If I’m gonna cheat on Downton, I’m goin’ all-out. I’ll bring you some of those chicken tacos you like.”
“Extra cheese and guacamole?” Anne said quietly, feeling marginally better.
“You got it. This level of self-pity calls for extra everything.”
Anne gave a weak smile as Callie gathered her purse and some of the supplies she’d delivered that morning with the baked goods. Callie was the owner of Callie’s Confections on the little Main Street in Preston, a trendy strip of boutique shops, restaurants, and antiques stores. She also was part of the My Perfect Little Life team. MPLL—as the three women affectionately referred to it—was a blog that Anne had started on a whim four years ago after creating a dream two-year-old party for Claire.
At the time her marriage had begun to show signs of unraveling, and instead of confronting the problem Anne started to focus on the things around her she could con- trol. No one had to know that she and Scott were miser- able, especially when she could make everything appear to be okay. She’d hoped that putting all of her energy into creating a great life for them might actually make
it come true. Anne had grown up in a home where peo- ple were celebrated and felt loved. She’d wanted noth-ing more than to give her own daughter the same experience no matter what was happening between her parents. That included fantastic birthday parties. Mem- orable, beautiful days that made you feel like a princess.
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