While this is technically the third book in a series, it is also a book that can be read without having read the others. Each book in this series deals with a different couple, but for the best reading, you really should read them in order. You can read my reviews for books one and two by clicking on the titles: Well Met and Well Played.
Well Matched by Jen Deluca
Publication Date: October 19, 2021
Summary from NetGalley:
A pretend relationship gives two friends more than they bargained for in a Renaissance Faire rom com filled with flower crowns, kilts, corsets, and sword fights.
Single mother April Parker has lived in Willow Creek for twelve years with a wall around her heart. On the verge of being an empty nester, she’s decided to move on from her quaint little town, and asks her friend Mitch for his help with some home improvement projects to get her house ready to sell.
Mitch Malone is known for being the life of every party, but mostly for the attire he wears to the local Renaissance Faire—a kilt (and not much else) that shows off his muscled form to perfection. While he agrees to help April, he needs a favor too: she’ll pretend to be his girlfriend at an upcoming family dinner, so that he can avoid the lectures about settling down and having a more “serious” career than high school coach and gym teacher. April reluctantly agrees, but when dinner turns into a weekend trip, it becomes hard to tell what’s real and what’s been just for show. But when the weekend ends, so must their fake relationship.
As summer begins, Faire returns to Willow Creek, and April volunteers for the first time. When Mitch’s family shows up unexpectedly, April pretends to be Mitch’s girlfriend again…and it doesn’t feel so fake anymore. Despite their obvious connection, April insists they’ve just been putting on an act. But when there’s the chance for something real, she has to decide whether to change her plans—and open her heart—for the kilt-wearing hunk who might just be the love of her life.
ARC provided by Berkley Publishing Group via NetGalley for an honest review.
I always enjoy spending time in Willow Creek and at their summer Renaissance Fair! This third installment is just as fun and steamy as the other two, plus how can you resist Mitch walking around in his kilt!
I really liked April, although there were a few times that she annoyed me. She is an introvert, but she takes it to the extreme sometimes. Part of the conflict with her relationship with Mitch was that she didn’t want people to gossip, which I kind of got, but I also was like so what? But anyways, she is a strong and resilient woman, who deals with her anxieties well and with a little help from her friends. The banter between her and Mitch was also wonderful, and I liked how she stuck up for him in front of his family. She also has a nice relationship with her daughter that had some bumps, but they were eventually able to overcome those.
I have loved Mitch since the first book and it was great to finally see him get a chance at romance. I would have loved to see some of the story from his point of view though. He also has some insecurities and issues that would have been nice to see explored a bit more. But he is a genuinely sweet guy, even though he is portrayed as a bit of a womanizer especially in the first book. He was very sweet and loving with April and he tolerated her issues quite a bit.
The story was nicely done. More time at the Faire this time around which is always fun. The writing was well done, loved the banter between Mitch and April as well as some from other characters. I absolutely adored some of the women in April’s book club and would love to have seen more from them. The sex was steamy and nicely done, with lots of swoon worthy moments as well. There could have been a bit more depth with some of the minor story lines, but that is my only complaint.
A very nice addition to the series. If you like fun, sweet yet steamy romances you can’t go wrong with this series. I look forward to reading more from this author, whether or not we return to Willow Creek.