This book is just like all the great historical romances where arranged marriages or marriages-of-convenience turn into the real thing over time, only it is set in modern America!
Travis is a dear, patient man who is so generous and so in love it almost hurts to watch him trying so hard to win the hurt-hardened heart of Shay. I so often wanted to grab Shay and Travis and give them a good shake and then sit them down and force them to TALK to one another. So much heartache over misunderstandings and lack of communication.
But eventually, love wins out and the ending is worth the agony of watching them hurt each other so much along the way. I loved the character of Miss Lucy, who may be old and scatty, but is also full of wisdom and prayer. We would all benefit from having a Miss Lucy in our lives.
Book Summary: When a wedding reenactment turns real, this cowgirl suddenly finds she's an accidental bride. Shay Brandenberger is raising her daughter in Moose Creek, Montana on her childhood ranch, nestled against the Yellowstone River. Despite her hard work, she can't seem to keep her head above waterâ€”and now the bank is threatening to foreclose. She prays for a miracle, but the answer she receives is anything but. Having agreed to play the bride in the Founders Day wedding reenactment, Shay is mortified to be greeted at the end of the aisle by none other than Travis McCoy, her high school sweetheartâ€”the man who left her high and dry for fame and fortune on the Texas rodeo circuit. Then the unthinkable happens. Thanks to a well-meaning busy body and an absent minded preacher, the wedding reenactment results in a legal marriage. But before Shay can say annulment, Travis comes up with a crazy proposal. If she refuses his offer, she'll lose her home. But if she accepts, she may lose her heart. Shay isn't sure if the recent events are God's will or just a preacher's blunder. Will trusting her heart to the man who once shattered it be the worst mistake of her life? Or could their marriage be the best accident that ever happened?
Review: I liked the 2 main characters and thought they had good chemistry. I did think there were almost too many secondary characters at the start of the book and this made it a little more confusing at times to recall who was who. It did get easier to follow as the book continued. I enjoyed the main characters. Shay was tough and did a lot of manual labor and yet was still feminine. Travis was very masculine and yet very sensitive to Shay. It was believable and yet very enjoyable to see how things were going to be resolved. The marriage license that was old and yet still valid seemed unlikely, although it was easy to suspend belief when the story flowed so nicely and the main characters were enjoyable. It was worth the read and the fact that it was a in a series was not a deterrent it was a good stand alone story.
I would like to thank Net Galley and Thomas Nelson for allowing me to read and review this book in return for a free copy and I was never asked to write a favorable review by anyone.
Shay Brandebgerger agrees to stand in as the bride in a re-enactment of Moose Creek's early history. She doesn't know elderly Miss Lucy has set up Travis McCoy, (who abandoned Shay at the altar fourteen years earlier), to be the re-enactment's groom. And supposedly the pastor accidentally sends a real wedding license to be registered for Shay and Troy. Or was Miss Lucy behind that, also?
Troy discovers he and Shay are really married and asks for five months to prove his love to her. She's been hurt so often and so deeply she often assumes wrong data so doesn't trust Troy nor ask him about suspicious incidents.
Will their love for each other ever win out? Will Shay lose her ranch and livelihood? What will happen to Shay's daughter, Olivia when Troy leaves? How will the author resolve seeming impossible situations?
The story has sweet moments and tense times, all adding to the allure of this well-written tale.
When high school sweethearts eloped, Travis McCoy left Shay Brandenberger on the courthouse steps in her wedding dress while he went to buy some rings at Kmart. Except he didn't come back. Instead, he made his way to the pro rodeo circuit in Texas.
14 years later, Shay is the widowed mother of a 12-year-old daughter, Olivia. She lives on the Montana ranch her family has had for generations, but she's about to lose it due to financial hardship. Meanwhile, she agrees to play the bride in Moose Creek's Founders' Day wedding reenactment and is beyond shocked when the enactment groom is none other than Travis McCoy. If she could slap him and turn heel, she would, but she's enough of the talk of the town. Everyone remembers her return by bus in her wedding dress years back.
How could this become a legal marriage between Shay and Travis? I'll leave you to read the book to find out. Travis has done well in rodeo, but he's never forgotten Shay or forgiven himself for what he did to her. He'd have returned years ago except he heard she was married. Now, though, the rules have changed and he sets out to win back his accidental bride. . .before she can have the marriage annulled!
The premise of The Accidental Bride was the primary reason I downloaded this book. I'd never read anything by this author before, or really heard anything about her. I'm so glad I did. Shay is a major spitfire, but realistically, who wouldn't be stinkin' mad if this happened to them? I also loved seeing Travis's regrets and his patience in winning Shay back. This book is highly recommended.
I received an e-copy of this novel for review from NetGalley. Opinions, as always, are mine alone.