30 April 2014

A June Bride by Marybeth Whalen

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It takes a reality TV show for Wynne to realize love isn't just a game.

Wynne Hardy never thought she'd get engaged on a reality TV show, but when she met Andy on The Rejection Connection, the two of them hit it off. Now he's asked her to marry him, much to the public's delight and fascination. They're all set to wed on live TV in a seaside ceremony at the height of the wedding season.

But just as Wynne thinks all her dreams are coming true, her ex-boyfriend walks back into her life at the worst possible time. Callum Royce broke her heart years ago, and she's still sorting through her feelings for him. Her heart isn't as clear as her head that it's past time to move on – even though she's engaged to Andy.

At a local TV talk show appearance, Wynne meets Meredith, who won another reality TV show – Marathon Mom – proving herself nothing short of a superhero. As Wynne's beach wedding plans spin out of control, Meredith offers to help, unknowingly stepping on Wynne's secret feelings… and exposing some secrets Meredith has been keeping to herself. Can these two reality stars get real about their feelings? Will Wynne go through with her televised wedding and be the perfect June bride the network is looking for?

In “A June Bride,” the seventh installment of Zondervan’s A Year of Weddings, Marybeth Whalen crafts a lighthearted and fun read. I enjoyed how she engages the cultural fascination with competitive, romantic reality TV (exemplified in multi-season shows like The Bachelor and The Bachelorette) as the backdrop for the wedding whirlwind. And telling the story singularly from Wynne’s perspective, Whalen, I think, offers a new approach to this wedding-themed novella collection (though she does comment on the wedding-versus-marriage theme reminiscent of “An April Bride”), which lead to an ending I really liked. It was a refreshing thought. “A June Bride” is great for a nice, quick read on a lazy afternoon. I can’t wait to read what else is in store for A Year of Weddings. Thanks to Zondervan, NetGalley and BookLook Bloggers, I received a digital copy of this novella to read and review honestly. I was not required to write a positive review, and all the opinions I have expressed are my own. (I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”)

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