Matchmaking guru Kennedy Pepperdine’s life is perfect. Perfect job. Perfect friends. Perfect boyfriend. Except…when she gets trapped in an elevator with a handsome stranger, she accidentally confesses a secret: maybe her perfect boyfriend, Justin, isn’t so perfect for her after all. But a matchmaker should be able to successfully match herself, right? Thankfully, she’ll never see the handsome stranger again. Until she heads home with Justin for the holidays and learns that the sexy stranger is none other than Justin’s older brother, Matt.
Matt Ellis is trying to be on his best behavior for his mother—it is Christmas, after all. But when he recognizes the beautiful woman from the elevator—the one he hasn’t been able to stop thinking about for months—his best behavior is being held by a thread. Matt’s always sacrificed for his family, and nothing is more important than their happiness, but the more time he spends around Kennedy, the more he wonders if her supposed “right match” might just be the wrong brother.
3 stars — I received a free copy through NetGalley in exchange for an honest and unbiased review/opinion.
OK, let me preface this review by saying that I’m not sure why I requested this from NetGalley…the entire premise should have given me a big clue. Perhaps I was thinking that it was only going to be initial circumstances, but that they would change quickly? Perhaps I was just going Christmas happy at the time? But seriously people, cheating is one of my button issues, so why in the world would I request a book whose very PREMISE is based around cheating. And no, there’s no big physical cheating moment (minus the elevator kiss at the beginning, but she tells Justin about that). But it’s the emotional cheating. That counts for me too. It’s the whole “if you’re this interested in someone else, perhaps you should end your current relationship first or figure out what to fix in it.” I’m just not a fan. It’s a personal taste thing, I totally get that, so this review is only going to be useful to others who feel similarly.
So a lot of my meh feelings for this book may be related to that one little (big) issue surrounding the cheating. I just honestly could NOT fall in love with our couple. Particularly b/c Kennedy’s relationship with Justin dragged on so fricking long! I just kept waiting for something to happen with Justin, waiting for the moment it would all blow up, and so I just didn’t get invested. The chemistry between Matthew and Kennedy was pretty good, but again, I was distracted by the circumstances.
I really did not love Kennedy. I didn’t dislike her so much as just have no feelings about her whatsoever. She just rubbed me the wrong way b/c of the decisions she was making in her relationship. And I didn’t buy how her Mom influenced her relationship hangups. I get what the author was trying to do there, but it wasn’t enough. Justin was just so unbelievably wrong, and it was so obvious, that I just couldn’t accept that because of her Mom’s flighty relationships, she would grab hold so tight.
And I could not get a feel for Matthew. I don’t know if we just didn’t get enough time in his head to get a good feel for who he was or what. At the very beginning we’re almost given this impression that he’s a playboy, but that didn’t feel quite right you know? Like a trait that was tacked on. It’s hard to fall in love with a hero that you just don’t know. And I just felt like I couldn’t empathize with him at all.
And the ending just really started feeling cheesy to me. Honestly, at that point I was almost skimming just to see what would happen. Quite frankly, this was probably more of a 2.5 star, but I’m writing this review off of notes, so I’m going with my initial gut feeling. I must have enjoyed the few good parts enough to give it that solid 3 stars. The reality is this wasn’t a bad book, it was just a TERRIBLE fit for me personally. Oh well.