When I open a book by Melissa Brayden, I usually know what to expect. This time, however, she really surprised me. In a good way.
Is there a rule that you’re not supposed to fall in love with the bride whose wedding you’re planning? Megan Kincaid did her best to keep her feelings in check but fourth-grade teacher Allison Hale turns out to be irresistible, very different from whom Megan expected wealthy Brent Carmichael to marry. Allison isn’t unhappy with Brent but as she finds out as she spends more time with Megan, she isn’t exactly happy either. Could Megan – a woman – be the person she’s meant to be with? And will Allison, who always puts other people’s needs before hers, allow herself to go for what she really wants?
Marry Me is the least Brayden book I’ve read by Melissa Brayden, while still being very much one, and I loved that. The last few books of hers I read, I couldn’t help but think that some things needed to evolve. The cuteness, the banter, all these things I loved in Brayden’s earlier books were becoming too much. I’m not sure whether that’s on her or on me. Anyway, she dialled back on them a little in this one, and it really worked for me. What’s at the forefront instead is the chemistry and damn, she writes it well.
Melissa Brayden has never shied away from writing intimate scenes, but in her latest books, they didn’t feel as exciting as in previous ones. The heat is back on and I couldn’t be happier about it. Undeniable chemistry is what makes Allison question her life and her desires, and Brayden wrote it in an entirely believable way. I also loved that while that chemistry was the starting point, it wasn’t the be-all and end-all of the attraction. Everything is better when Ally and Megan do it together. And yes, that definitely includes sex.
I ached for Ally whenever she felt she wasn’t enough. I despise her sister Betsy, who doesn’t seem to have any qualm pimping her out to her ex-fiancé to solve the family’s problems. If Ally can forgive her, good for her. I won’t. Yes, I have strong opinions on this.
On the other hand, I love Lacey, Ally’s colleague, and Kelsey, Megan’s best friend. I wanted more of them and would love for either to get her own book. I enjoyed Lacey’s humour a lot. And Kelsey’s supportive (and sexy) and isn’t scared of calling Megan out when she’s acting like a fool. Finally, Megan’s parents’ playful squabbling made my heart warm.
There’s still the 80% break up but at least it’s not out of the blue, and while I wish Megan and Allison had more faith in each other and in themselves, it made sense for them to mess up in this way. I could have done without it but it didn’t annoy me as much as other black moments have.
For the first half, this felt like a 5* book. Then the second half began and the characters started acting like idiots, and it dragged on for a while, until finally everything got fixed, somewhat in a rush. I nevertheless recommend reading it, because, even though the second part is frustrating, there’s a lot I really enjoyed.