After really enjoying the happy little novellas from the first Year of Weddings (set by seasons: Winter, Spring, Summer, and Autumn), I thought that I would give the second year a whirl. These are still set by month, but the titles don’t reflect it the way the first set did. I’ve actually read the first three seasons at this point, and I’ve overall been disappointed as these stories are really not up to par with the first set. This first book in particular was quite weak, and there was one story in the second book that I didn’t even bother finishing. The third book was more at the level of the first year, though, so I will probably still end up finding the autumn book at some point (it isn’t at the library even though the other three are…??)
Anyway, on to this set of three stories –
Love at Mistletoe Inn by Cindy Kirk – 2.5/5 – this was a story that was almost really good, but was executed so clumsily that I couldn’t get into it. The premise is that Hope eloped with her high school sweetheart, John, the night of their high school prom. But right after they got married, she panicked and changed her mind. The guy who married them said that was fine and he just wouldn’t file their paperwork and everyone could go on with life. Now, ten years later, John is back in town AND Hope has just found out that they are still legally married even though the paperwork never got filed.
First, I wasn’t convinced that they were legit married. Isn’t the whole point of getting married so that the government can acknowledge your marriage? If it’s never filed, the government never knows about it?? So maybe they are ‘morally’ married (or something), but I don’t think they would suddenly be able to just sit down and start filing taxes like a married couple. I don’t know, I’m not a legal expert, but the the whole thing seemed sketch.
Secondly, Hope goes to John to tell him this whole story. And… they sleep together!? Like right then?! This is ‘Christian’ romance, so there is nothing graphic, and in fact it was so NOT graphic and so incredibly random that I had to read the paragraph multiple times to make sure that that was what had actually happened. Here’s how it goes down – they’re sitting on John’s couch and share a kiss. John, of course, has always been desperately in love with Hope through all the years.
This was the woman who held his heart. Whether she wanted it or not, she had it for all eternity.
John had always felt connected to her. He’d never forgotten the vows they’d made and the promise given. In this moment, he saw those same sentiments in her expression.
Several hours later, Hope left John’s bed and headed downtown for an appointment she’d made after speaking with the county recorder.
!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I have edited nothing! What just happened!? It was just SO obvious that Kirk didn’t want annulment to be an option, so she had to make them sleep together right away, apparently. It was just weird and forced and bizarre. So even though I actually liked the characters and even parts of the story, that whole bit was just so weird that I couldn’t get past it.
A Brush with Love by Rachel Hauck – 2.5/5 – I really enjoyed Hauck’s contribution from the first round of seasonal weddings, but this was a really weak story. The whole story was way too melodramatic, and it seemed impossible to believe that Ginger would suddenly and completely do a 180* turnabout and now everything is fine. The story was just weird and cheesy, and not in a relaxing way.
Serving Up a Sweetheart by Cheryl Wyatt – 3/5 – This one wasn’t too bad and I actually enjoyed most of it. However, the story was really choppy, and the whole hate-to-love thing happened waaaay too fast to be convincing.