by Lauren Layne
Published by Pocket Books on August 30th 2016
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Will a budding wedding planner and her bad boy neighbor stop banging heads and start hearing wedding bells in the sexy second novel in USA TODAY bestselling author Lauren Layne’s irresistible new series that marries Sex and the City with The Wedding Planner?
When small-town girl Heather Fowler finally gets promoted from assistant to actual wedding planner, she’s determined to make it as one of Manhattan’s elite Wedding Belles. Unfortunately, her first client demands an opulent black-tie affair at the Plaza…in five months’ time. Heather’s days quickly become a flurry of cake tastings, dress-fittings, RSVP cards, and bridal tantrums. But what she’s really losing sleep over is the live music blaring from her playboy neighbor’s apartment all night.
Five years ago, Josh Tanner was an up-and-comer on Wall Street, complete with the penthouse and the migraines. But a grim cancer diagnosis made him realize there is more to life than the corner office. If only he could convince his pretty, workaholic neighbor to let loose, too. As Heather lets down her guard, Josh is surprised when he starts falling for the sweet, vulnerable woman hiding beneath those power suits. Soon, it’s Heather’s turn to convince Josh to take the biggest risk of all: love.
This is probably my favorite in the series so far. Granted this series hasn’t really wowed me yet unlike her other series’ in the past. Still, this was very enjoyable. I loved the banter between Heather and Josh. They started off as “enemies.” Heather sees Josh as an overgrown frat boy who doesn’t have any consideration for his neighbor by playing loud obnoxious music with his band while Heather was only trying to get some sleep. On the other hand, Josh sees Heather as an uptight and overworked lady who doesn’t know how to have fun.
They are of course, both wrong and right in their assessment of one another. Heather may be a bit uptight but it’s only because she has a goal of making it as a wedding planner and not just an “assistant” wedding planner in New York. She’s living her dream since she was a little girl and her annoying neighbor isn’t going to ruin that.
Josh for his part has been through hell and back. He quit his cushy Wall Street job and vowed to enjoy his life to the fullest. And that means pursuing his love for music, women and maybe annoying his pretty neighbor.
Although they started off as adversaries, Josh and Heather found themselves battling an intense attraction for each other. They’re slowly realizing how wrong they are in their initial impression of each other. Despite that, Josh is adamant on keeping Heather at arm’s length. You have to find out exactly what they are but if you’ve read the blurb, you might have some idea already.
It’s also great to catch up with the Belles again. And we can clearly see how LL is setting up Alexis and Logan’s story for the next book.
Like I said, I enjoyed this book and this series isn’t bad. But oh man, there’s just something so generic about them. And I’m not talking about storyline and tropes. A great author can use old tropes and make it her own and I’d enjoy it. But more and more, I find Ms. Layne’s characters to be so basic.
So why this rating then, if I enjoyed it? I dunno. It’s probably just me but I feel like I’ve read these characters before…or some variation of it. If you’ve been reading LL’s books for as long as I have, you’ll know what I mean. Her heroines are all white, thin and blonde, and proper. She’ll throw in a couple of brunettes in there but aside from the hair color, there’s really nothing that differentiates these heroines from her other heroines from her other series.
Still, I feel like For Better or Worse is better than the previous books in this series, which isn’t saying much but hey, I’ve enjoyed myself and would continue to read this series.
ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.