Well Matched

WELL MATCHED (Well Met #3)

Written by Jen Deluca
Published by Berkley, October 19, 2021
My star rating – 5 stars!!!

THE SYNOPSIS:

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.

MY REVIEW:

This is easily one of my favourite rom-com series I’ve ever read! Yes, I absolutely loved the first two… how could I not? Strong independent women who also happen to volunteer for the local renaissance faire which just so happens to be full of men dressed as pirates or in kilts? Say no more, right? But this one…. This one is HANDS DOWN THE BEST ONE YET!!!!

With each book we follow a new woman. This is April’s story. If you’ve read these books then you might know April as the sister of Emily, who is the main character in the first book, Well Met. April was always my favourite character so I couldn’t have been happier than when I heard this book was all about her!

April is a single mother and has spent the last 18 years putting her own needs aside to focus on her daughter. Now that her daughter is going off to college, she finally decides to fix up her house so she can put it up for sale and move to the city. Then we have Mitch. Town hottie, biggest catch, and high school gym teacher/coach who needs a “pretend girlfriend to go with him to a family event so they will finally stop asking when he’s going to settle down. She figures one favour for another – help him out with his family for a night and he helps her with a few home renovations. I scratch your back and you scratch mine? We all know it doesn’t end there lol.

As fun as these books are, there’s so much more to it than just faire’s, kilts and steam. April, as a character, is someone I can really relate to. A mom who devotes all her time and energy into everyone else but herself, and is antisocial and introverted but is also sad that she’s missing out on things. She has never volunteered for the Faire and had no interest but at the same time felt like she was always an outsider. She also felt as though the town didn’t like her because she was never a part of school events or anything else. That’s so me. Like her, I don’t have the time to do these things so I’m afraid I’m not accepted. And with Mitch, he was always seen as this playboy type – out for some fun but not willing to settle down. His family didn’t see him as a professional because he was just a gym teacher. This book really took a hard look into these characters lives from every angle. All their thoughts and emotions. How they feel they are perceived and how they want to be perceived. It was sooooo well done!

Another really interesting (and sometimes frustrating and infuriating) thing about this book was the theme of allowing yourself to open up, be vulnerable, and be loved. April was divorced from her husband for 17 years and hasn’t had a relationship since. She was so protective of her heart and wouldn’t allow herself to get hurt again. Sometimes I just wanted to slap her across the face! I get that she wanted to keep telling herself that he’s just pretending but, damn woman! Smarten up! Open your eyes!

These two were just so good together. They were so well balanced in personality and watching one support the other warmed my cold heart. And it was interesting to, once again, see the Renaissance Faire from a new perspective. Every time I read one of these books I want to throw on a corset… not like I own one. Maybe I should? I think I should!

I’m almost positive that this is it for the Well Met series and it breaks my heart. Regardless of the subject matter or relations to Faire’s in the future, I will literally read anything Jen Deluca writes!!!! If you haven’t jumped into this series yet – you need to!!

Until next time, happy reading!

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