Review copy was received from NetGalley. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Bride for a Day by Carolyn Brown
Published by Sourcebooks Casablanca on March 29, 2022
Genres: Contemporary Romance
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Cassie O'Malley is a woman on the run when she when gets tangled up with a suspicious local sheriff and, on the spur of the moment, turns to a handsome stranger to get herself out of a tight spot.
Ted Wellman didn't go to town to get hitched but that sweet girl with her big green eyes looked desperate. Suddenly he finds himself married to a stranger. No problem, his uncle's a lawyer and everybody knows he's in no emotional condition to settle down, not since the death of his brother put him on emotional lock down.
Carolyn Brown writes country charm and cowboy romance like few others. It was with utter fascination I discovered she was reissuing her very first published books she wrote as Abby Gray. Eager to check out one of her first efforts, I dove into this engaging small town romance.
Cassie O’Malley is a young woman, reared in the foster system and running away from her loser guardian who was attempting to sell her to human traffickers. When he couldn’t get her back, he sicced the law on her by reporting her as a thief. Naturally, she is scared and gets jittery when she gets off the bus in a small town and encounters the local sheriff in the diner. She latches onto a young cowboy sitting nearby to pretend they’re together and astoundingly, he plays along even to a visit to the courthouse to give her a sort term marriage to protect her. Cassie has never encountered such a place and finds herself fitting in for the first time in her life with a family and a friendly town. Ted is pretty great, too. Too bad it’s temporary, or is it?
Ted Wellman is young, but he is certain a relationship and marriage is not in the cards for him since he is convinced that his heart is out of reach after his brother died. But, he’s not beyond playing the cowboy version of Sir Galahad to a scared young woman. He’s not worried about putting a ring on it because his uncle is a lawyer and will get it annulled when the time comes. However, his big quirky family of Wellmans have other ideas when they catch sight of Cassie and, if he’s honest, he’s not that eager to end it, either.
Bride for a Day front loads most of the excitement in that all the big moments do seem to happen in the first third of the book. In fact, some issues just seem to fade away. Then it settles into that easy, gently-paced country life and slow burn loving I’m used to from the author’s books. It was a forgone conclusion where things would end up and I was happy to go along with it. Cassie, Ted, his fun family and the town were easily lovable and I was having fun seeing his family determine Cassie was a good thing for Ted and do their darnedest to make it happen. Ted just had to acknowledge that his grief and loss from the past really didn’t stop him from loving a good woman and Cassie had to do a clean out of her past, too.
So, easy-going and light entertainment in this cowboy romance. Those who don’t mind the less dramatic and gentle-pacing of a country small town setting and characters should definitely slip this one into the reading pile.
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