Title: Never the Bride
Author: Charlotte Fallowfield
Series: Dilbury Village #1
Publisher: Self Published
Release Date: 2/28/2017
Genre(s): Contemporary Romance, Romantic Comedy, Chick-Lit
Page Count: 314
Heat Level: 2 flames out of 5
Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5
A laugh-out-loud novel from Charlotte Fallowfield, Amazon bestselling romantic comedy author of Until We Collide.
Abbie Carter felt doomed as she clutched her bouquet and started walking up the aisle. Again. She felt like she was stuck in some kind of Groundhog Day wedding nightmare. Always the bridesmaid, never the bride. Eight dresses, most of them hideous, were already stuffed in her attic space. She had more bridesmaid dresses than relationships. Was she really that unlucky in love? She despaired of ever finding her soul mate and was convinced that if she packed away dress thirteen in her attic, she’d never get to wear the coveted white one and have her happy ever after.
That was until she locked eyes with one of the handsome ushers, whose wink turned her elegant and well-practiced glide up the aisle into a flailing Bambi-on-ice spectacle. Miller Davis was the first man in forever to make her heart skip a beat, as well as her legs turn to jelly. And, for once, her interest in a man didn’t seem to be one-sided. It was just a shame that the Atlantic Ocean separated them. Abbie couldn’t even make a relationship with her elderly fat pooch, Sumo, work, so what chance did she have with a permanent New Yorker? Her best friend, Georgie, told her to ignore the miles that separated her from Miller and to go for it, saying that true love knew no bounds.
Was Abbie fated to always be the bridesmaid, or would her wish for the perfect day with the man of her dreams ever come true?
While Never The Bride is a standalone story, it’s the first in the Dilbury Village series of romantic comedy novels. All of them will be set in the quaint fictitious English hamlet in the Shropshire countryside, but feature a different village couples’ story.
Warning, if you are of a sensitive disposition when it comes to toilet humour, then the Dilbury Village series may not be for you!
3.5 stars- Cute and silly race to the alter
When I first started this book, I was highlighting like crazy, laughing so hard I had tears in my eyes. Unfortunately, as the book continued the laughter grew less frequent. It started to become a bit too forced and the humor more contrived. I still grinned plenty and thought the story was cute, but it didn’t have the same laugh-out-loud effect it had on me initially.
I hadn’t read this author before, but the writing itself was very good. The characters were all well-developed and quite likable. I liked the dynamic of the small town and the comradery the group of friends and villagers shared. The secondary characters were layered well with their introductions, so it never felt like there was a barrage of personalities to sort through. As a series launch, I think Never the Bride was very successful. The dialogue, inside jokes, and scenes all flowed and it read very quickly. For me, it was just a tad too long to keep me invested. After a while the jokes and craziness Abbie and her friends found herself in became too much like slapstick and I simply wanted to move forward.
The romance between Miller and Abbie was very sweet. I liked Miller as an individual and found Abbie and he fit very well together. I liked how they played off one another and it always felt natural, with the chemistry coming through to the reader. The hurdles the pair faced were a bit relentless at times, and I grew frustrated with the back and forth. However, it did feel believable considering their circumstances. I was glad with how it all capped off and thought it left the reader in the perfect place to continue the series.
Overall, I think this was a well-written romantic comedy that just went a little too long for me. I loved the humor at first, I liked how inside jokes kept coming up throughout the book, and the play on American vs British terms was very clever, but eventually it ran its course. I think had this been shorter, I would have howled with laughter throughout the book. I do think plenty of readers will love Never the Bride and the series the whole way through, but for me it wasn’t enough to keep me returning to Dilbury Village.