To Love and To Cherish by Lauren Layne

28552677Sex and the City meets The Wedding Planner in The Wedding Belles, a contemporary and witty romance series about three high-powered New York City women who can plan any wedding—but their own.

Alexis Morgan has spent the past six years devoted to turning her tiny start-up into Manhattan’s premiere wedding planning company, The Wedding Belles. Now that her business is thriving, it’s time to turn towards her much neglected personal life, and Alexis approaches her relationships like she does everything else: with a plan. Not a part of that plan is Logan Harris, the silent partner in the Belles, and the one person who’s been there for her since the very beginning. But Alexis needs someone fun, and Logan’s all business, all the time—except when a late night at the office ends with an unexpected kiss that leaves the usually cool and together Alexis reeling.

Logan has lusted after Alexis since the day he walked into the tiny Harlem apartment that used to double as her office. But the ambitious wedding planner has always been untouchable…until now. Alexis has made it clear that she’s on the dating market—and equally clear that he’s not in the running. But when Alexis finds herself in need of a date for her sister’s last minute wedding in Florida, Logan knows it’s the perfect time to show Alexis that there’s more to him than numbers and spreadsheets—and beneath the pinstripes and glasses lies a hot-blooded heartthrob. As Florida’s sultry days turn into even hotter nights, Logan’s out to convince Alexis that the fling of a lifetime could just maybe turn into forever…

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My Review:
4 stars — I received a free copy through NetGalley in exchange for an honest and unbiased review/opinion.

I was super weirdly reluctant to read this last installment to the series.  While I’ve enjoyed the series as a whole, I had some reservations about Alexis and how her story was going to play out.  And shit, after book 2 was so amazing, it’s hard not to wonder how this book would live up to my expectations.  So I started this one with a bit of hesitancy I guess you could say.  And then the prologue kind of blew me away.  There was so much going on in that one little chapter — I ADORED this first meeting of Alexis and Logan!  Oh dear me, Logan was just…so sweet and perfect.  And I really had a lot of hope.  Seriously, they had great bantering chemistry, and I saw so much potential.  I even saw hints at a vulnerable side to Alexis.  It was a FANTASTIC and PERFECT start to the book.

And in general, I really did enjoy their story.  I would not have anticipated Alexis’s backstory, and it kind of broke my heart you know?  I couldn’t imagine dealing with that, it was strangely unique b/c it wasn’t all scandal, it was just a strange cataclysm of life, and poor Alexis got the short end of the stick.  It was hard to hate her sister, or even blame her.  I liked that.  And at the same time, I still got Alexis’s reactions.  So I really enjoyed that aspect of Alexis’s character, and it did give you a bit of insight into who she was, and why she was the way she was…part of it was just innately part of her character, but part of it was exacerbated by these events.

I didn’t always enjoy some other aspects of Alexis’s character though.  She could be ridiculously obtuse sometimes, and I’m still not sure if that was deliberate, or if she was really just that clueless.  I never did figure out why she couldn’t see Logan’s feelings.  I mean, I guess she didn’t *want* to see them, but she really seemed genuinely clueless, and that didn’t always work for me.

Logan was a bit of a strange contradiction.  I really loved a lot of who he was, but I couldn’t always pin down who he was.  I saw someone else’s review say he was a bit of an alpha and a beta, and that was a bit strange, and I kind of agree.  But at the same time, I really loved the parts that I could figure out about him.  I actually enjoyed that he was so…observant?  That he got Alexis so much, and was patiently waiting for her.  And he could be really sassy when he wanted to be, and I really enjoyed that.  My problem is that I wasn’t always cool with his choices in how he stepped up his game.  He made some mistakes that I felt like he shouldn’t have made and it didn’t really fit all the time.

I definitely enjoyed their chemistry, though I will say I felt more of the friendship chemistry than the more chemistry with these two…not that the more wasn’t there, but it took a while to get there in the book, and I just personally wasn’t swept away in that part.

All in all it was enjoyable to see this series come to its conclusion.  Since I kind of had low expectations for this couple b/c I couldn’t figure Alexis out, I was actually pleasantly surprised in general.  It was no Heather and Josh, but it was a solid Ms. Layne showing.  And seeing the other characters make appearances was awesome.  I especially enjoyed Logan hanging out with Seth and Josh…those boys can make me laugh.  Good stuff all around.