They say you form your first impression of someone within thirty seconds of meeting them. Or, in Mira Parrish’s case, within thirty minutes of not meeting them, when said person is supposed to pick you up from the airport and never shows. This is not a perfect start to her new life. Her friend Ivy is depending on her to run a new romance store, and Mira can’t afford to let her down.
Sam Lyons should probably apologize. But every time he sees Mira—which is often, since his family owns the bakery next to her shop—he can’t resist antagonizing her. There’s something about the sexy, straight-laced woman that drives him crazy. He can’t get involved, though. He has too much baggage to be any good in a serious relationship.
Despite his teasing attitude, Mira finds Sam too sweet to resist. (His hot body may be a factor.) But if there’s going to be anything permanent between them, they’ll need to let go of their pasts and look to the future…
I loved Ivy and Ben from Planning for Love, so I was super keen to see how Mira and Sam’s story turned out so I managed to get my hands on a copy of A Fine Romance. While I did enjoy this one, it didn’t quite reach the heights that Planning for Love did. Needless to say, this was still a very enjoyable read.
Mira comes from money – BIG money. But rather than be content to just coast through living on the chequebook from the Bank of Dad, Mira has tried to branch out into business for herself. Less than successfully, yes, but her friend Ivy has enough faith in her to ask for her help in running her romance shop (which, as you will learn when you read it, is often mistaken for an establishment that sells a “different” kind of romance).
It is next door to the Lyons bakery. Sam creates a lot of the incredible wedding cakes for Ivy’s wedding planning business. A wizard with buttercream and baker’s flour, Sam is truly talented. Except for when it comes to picking Mira up from the airport, something he completely forgets to do.
Despite this rocky start, Mira and Sam do find they have an undeniable chemistry. It did take a little bit for me to get Mira and Sam as a couple, but in the end, it was clear to me that they deserved their HEA. I did love how passionate they were about things, Mira about making a go of things on her own and Sam about baking (and fulfilling his duty – but more about that in a bit). This passion for outside pursuits certainly lends itself to passion for each other. There’s a lot of banter and snipping between them, which was quite fun to read. They both had their issues, for sure (who doesn’t), but Mira and Sam did make a nice couple and complemented each other well.
OK, Sammy old boy, I love that you are committed to looking out for your mum. I’m sure your father would have been proud of that. But maybe you needed to dial back on the hyper-protective business a bit – and maybe have a chat to her if you were worried. That did get to me a bit.
As with Planning for Love, I really enjoyed the relationships between the close group of friends that Mira and Sam are a part of. You get to revisit with Ivy and Ben, and there are some little snippets of Gib and Daphne, enough to whet your appetite for their story, Friends to Lovers, which is due out soon.
I really enjoyed this book, maybe not as much as I did Planning for Love, but all in all, it was still great.
My rating: 4 out of 5
Release date: 11 March 2013
Note: I was provided with an advanced reader copy of this book by Carina Press via NetGalley in return for an honest review.