Review: Hitched! by Jessica Hart


Title:  Hitched!

Author:  Jessica Hart

May Contain Spoilers

From Amazon:

Planning the most-talked-about wedding of the year is enough to break engineer Frith Taylor out in a cold sweat. She’s used to construction sites, not wedding fairs! But estate manager George Challoner’s offer of help is one that’s too good to resist. George may be the rebel of the prestigious Challoner family, but his insanely good looks are giving Frith wedding fever! Charm personified, he’s making her feel things she hasn’t dared feel before. Maybe her little sister’s wedding won’t be the only one Frith’s planning…?


Hitched! is the last of the Kiss launch titles that I read.  Once again, it showed how much  variety there is across the line.  This one threw me though, because it is written in the first person POV, and I struggled with that.  It screamed more Chick Lit to me than Harlequin Romance, and  I found being constantly in Frith’s head, with no glimpses into what made George tick, disconcerting.  I enjoy getting more input from the hero, and as I was only privy to Frith’s thoughts here, that wasn’t possible.  I never felt connected to George or his motivations, because of that.  Frith’s voice is fun and upbeat, but I have some kind of mental block when I am confronted with category romances written in this point of view.  I always have, and it seems, I always will.

Frith has been lassoed in to helping her younger sister plan her extravagant wedding.  She doesn’t want anything to do with it , though.  Always feeling like an outsider in her own family, she doesn’t get along with her sister’s friends, and her wealthy father isn’t in her good graces.  After her parents divorced, Frith watched her mother spiral into unhappiness.  Her mother was never able to get over her father, and due to his indifference to her, Frith’s relationship with him withered.  Determined to make something of herself without his help, she put herself through school and landed a job at a construction company.  Her dream is work at a huge construction project overseas, and she won’t let anything get in the way of her dreams.  Not sexy George or her sister’s much publicized wedding.  Frith has a plan, darn it, and she’s sticking to it!

I did love Frith’s personality.  She is a planner.  A mega planner, actually.  She works off of five year plans, where everything is spelled out for her as she marches toward her career goals.  George, the estate manager for the construction site she’s currently working at,  is her exact opposite.  He has no plans, and he just takes things one day at a time.  He finds Frith’s planning ridiculous.  How can you live your life if you’re so worried about sticking to a plan?  Frith has developed her five year plan, with no room for a serious relationship, to keep herself from falling into the same trap as her mother.  She will never allow herself to feel that passionately about a man, and so her focus is on herself and her career.  All of her previous relationships were tepid and easily forgotten.  All except one, that is, and that one, awful experience is something that she never wants to repeat. 

At first, Frith is able to resist George and his flirty ways.  She doesn’t trust him, and she feels that he’s a threat to her plan.  As the days tick by, however, and they are both roped in helping with the wedding planning, a companionable friendship develops between them.  This is what I enjoyed most about Hitched!  The romance is slow to build, but once Frith starts to give in to her attraction for George, it quickly steams up.  I am not a huge fan of the love at first sight trope, and am usually not convinced by the HEA, so I liked how Frith and George’s relationship changed and grew.  They both have demons from their pasts to face, and together, I know that they will conquer all of their insecurities.  Frith’s belief in George was also refreshing.  After hearing unfavorable gossip about him, she quickly dismissed it as untrue.  She didn’t let  the drama overcome her feelings for him, and instead trusted him enough to explain the situation himself.  There are so many contemporary romances were the heroine takes gossip at face value, driving the couple unnecessarily apart, so Frith’s trust was nice change.  The only thing keeping me from enjoying Hitched! more is the POV.

Grade: C+

Review copy provided by publisher

Interview with Kelly Hunter, Author of The One That Got Away

Continuing with my Harlequin Kiss celebration, today I invited one of my favorite romance authors, Kelly Hunter, to the virtual offices for a visit.  Please give her a warm welcome!  Don’t forget that on Friday, I will be giving away one complete set of the KISS launch titles, so make sure to stop back to enter for your chance to win!

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Describe yourself in 140 characters or less.

[Kelly Hunter] I’m a forty-something mother of boys, with an eclectic work history and a fondness for the unexpected. I travel a lot and live in Australia.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What makes Harlequin’s Kiss line unique from their other series romances?

[Kelly Hunter] The party-line is that KISS features strongly unique author voices, global settings and world views, smart characters and compelling stories. Fun is definitely allowed. The level of sensuality may vary. I adore writing for this line.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What do you enjoy best about writing for Harlequin?

[Kelly Hunter] The fabulous editors.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Can you tell us a little about The One That Got Away?

[Kelly Hunter] In essence, it’s a second chance romance between two characters who meet again unexpectedly after many years apart.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] How did you come up with the concept and the characters for the story?

[Kelly Hunter] I can tell you how the idea for the story started… A bunch of romance writer pals and I were sitting around one day (there may have been drinks with little umbrellas involved) discussing (okay, pulling apart) the famed and oft misunderstood Presents Alpha Hero. I was writing Presents Extra at the time and wondering why these super-controlled and oh-so-dominant men didn’t really seem to dominate in the bedroom. Figured I’d attempt to write one that liked to dominate there too. The result was Logan Black. The challenge was to see if I could make me fall in love with him.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three words best describe Evie?

[Kelly Hunter] Strong. Self aware.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] If Logan had a theme song, what would it be?

[Kelly Hunter] Natalie Merchant’s ‘My Skin’.

Some of the lyrics:

"Oh, I need the darkness

The sweetness

The sadness

The weakness

Oh, I need this."

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Name one thing Evie won’t leave the house without.

[Kelly Hunter] Her handbag. She’s a practical girl.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three things will you never find in Logan’s pockets?

[Kelly Hunter] Bus tickets, comb, junk.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What is Evie’s greatest regret?

[Kelly Hunter] I kinda don’t see Evie living a life of regret. Even after that first week with Logan, Evie didn’t regret her time with him. She learned from it.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What are your greatest creative influences?

[Kelly Hunter] Friends. Music. Stories written by other authors – especially ones that stretch genre boundaries and challenge my perspectives.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three things do you need in order to write?

[Kelly Hunter] Time, a computer and preferably a table and chair – although the last two are optional.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What is the last book that you read that knocked your socks off?

[Kelly Hunter] Crush, by Richard Siken.  Sometimes I go in search of new (to me) male author voices; more specifically male authors who write about love and relationships. I picked up Crush at the end of last year and it won my heart – probably because it was so different to what I normally read. It’s poetry. I never read poetry 😉

My favourite line: ‘I said kiss me here and here and here and you did,’ from ‘I Had A Dream About You’.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] If you had to pick one book that turned you on to reading, which would it be?

[Kelly Hunter] Something by Enid Blyton involving adventures and naughty children and minimal parental involvement (that or a Faraway Tree).

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What do you like to do when you aren’t writing?

[Kelly Hunter] Spend time with friends and family.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] How can readers connect with you?

[Kelly Hunter] I’m on twitter, facebook, and occasionally I blog. Or you can email me privately via my website.





[Manga Maniac Cafe] Thank you!

You can purchase The One That Got Away from your favorite bookseller or by clicking the links below. Be sure to check back at the end of the week for your chance to win a set of the first four KISS titles!


About the book

Good job? Tick. Newly purchased apartment? Tick. Evie’s life is on a pretty even keel at the moment. The only thing missing? A man with an edge to keep things interesting. Enter Logan Black. Tortured, distant and sexy, Logan has edge written all over him. He’s also the man who tipped Evie over the edge a few years back – she gave him everything, but he didn’t know when to stop taking. Leaving Logan was the hardest thing Evie’s ever done. Until now. Because Logan’s back, the chemistry is as blistering as ever, and this time he’s not going anywhere…

Waiting on Wednesday–The Guy to be Seen With by Fiona Harper

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

After enjoying Nikki Logan’s How to Get Over Your Ex, I am curious to read Daniel’s side of things.  Fiona Harper follows heartbreaker Daniel in The Guy To Be Seen With.  In stores February 19


London’s most eligible guy-finally snared?  Who can forget gorgeous adventurer Daniel Bradford? Especially after this commitment-phobe’s on-air rejection of his girlfriend’s marriage proposal sparked a scandal! But some people love a challenge. With Daniel suddenly back on the market, all of London’s single ladies are on the lookout. Yet he’s shown no inclination to get caught by anyone…until now.

So just who is special enough to catch his attention? Our sources reveal she’s strong-willed blonde bombshell Chloe Michaels, orchid specialist and Daniel’s new colleague. And rumor has it that with this tough cookie, London’s very own Indiana Jones is in for the-romantic-adventure of a lifetime!

What are you waiting on?