Book 1, Misfit Brides
This book can be downloaded and read in Apple Books on your Mac or iOS device.
PUBLISHERS WEEKLY STARRED REVIEW: "Farrell marries warmth with tongue-in-cheek wit in this marvelous romantic comedy."
An out-of-place single mother and a thrill-seeking widower collide in the Wedding Capital of the Midwest!
Natalie Castellano didn't have the wedded bliss experience typical of her hometown, but that won't stop her from ensuring this year's bridal festival goes off without a hitch. Even if it means she has to play nice with the man who broke her fairy tale.
World adventurer and reluctant local hero CJ Blue doesn't want to be in Bliss anymore than Natalie wants him here. But family obligations have brought him back, and now, Natalie is using every trick she has to rope him into helping save a tradition he'd rather forget.
Despite their rocky past, these two wounded souls have more in common than they expect. They've both loved and lost, they've both tried to move on, and now they've both locked up their hearts. But by joining forces for the sake of Bliss, they might find the courage to risk love one more time.
Blissed is a standalone romantic comedy. Be sure to check out the rest of the Misfit Brides series!
Blissed (CJ and Natalie)
Matched (Will and Lindsey)
Smittened (Mikey and Dahlia)
Sugared (Josh and Kimmie)
Merried (Max and Merry)
And for more fun from Jamie Farrell, check out the Officers' Ex-Wives Club series!
Southern Fried Blues (Jackson and Anna Grace)
Moonshine & Magnolias (Zack and Shelby)
And sign up for Jamie Farrell's newsletter to stay up to date with Jamie's latest releases! www.JamieFarrellBooks.com
Note: BLISSED was previously published as THE HUSBAND GAMES.
From Publishers Weekly
© Publishers Weekly
What's New in Version 2.5
Back matter updated.
Funny, sexy, sassy ... fabulous romance!
Wow, what an emotional roller coaster. It probably didn't help that I read this on Mother's Day and I lost my Mother 12 years ago. Natalie is struggling with the loss of her Mom, it's been 6 months and she is trying to carry on in her footsteps, fulfilling her Mom's last project. The Golden Husband Games for Bliss. Of course, Natalie hasn't had an easy road. She is a divorcee in the "Most Married-est Town" so the Queen General makes it her mission to make her life miserable, ensuring she feels like an outcast. The hard part is that all Natalie has ever dreamed about doing is following her in Mother's footsteps as Chair of the Husband Games committee so this just leads Natalie to feeling like a complete an utter failure. CJ Blue is a past winner of the Husband Games and is now a revered widower after his wife died serving in the Air Force. Sadly, CJ is lost, seeking crazy adventures around the world trying to bury his guilt for the struggles in his marriage, he feels responsible for Serena going to war and losing her life. CJ and Natalie had a moment at that infamous Husband Games 5 years ago and it became the final straw sending her husband away for good. When they cross paths again, Natalie just sees CJ as the destroyer of his marriage. CJ finds a strong, independent, courageous woman that scares the crap out of him. This road they go down to find themselves and maybe a relationship is rocky, bumpy and charming. Factor in 4 year old Noah, Natalie's son and scene stealer, well, and I don't know how anyone would be able to resist. Along the way we meet a strong cast of characters that are there to support Natalie and CJ giving this story amazing depth. I truly enjoyed my afternoon buried in Blissed and am still shocked that a mother would name all 13 children after spices. Crazy!
It made me so mad!😡
I'm sooooo tired of books where in the first couple chapters they make me mad. I'm done with being mad. It is a sickening feeling and that a book that I purchased to make me feel hopeful and peaceful would make me THIS angry is disappointing to me.
Stars: Overall 4 Narration 5 Story 3
Bliss is a small Illinois town, dubbing itself the “Bridal Capital” of the Midwest. So much so that Main Street is The Aisle, and a huge annual celebration, the Husband Games, is the highlight of the social year, set to promote all things married and wedding.
Natalie is back in Bliss, after a horrendous marriage, and is now running her late mother’s bridal shop (one of six in town). Because the Husband Games were important to her mother, she is willing to go to great lengths to make this, the 50th anniversary of the games the best ever in her memory. If only.
CJ is a native boy, but has traded in the small town in favor of adrenaline after the death of his wife during her deployment. He’s not at all interested in anything to do with the ‘games’ or any person trying to push him that way.
The characters: complete with a totally distasteful “Queen General” who spends her life upbraiding, downgrading and bullying everyone into towing her line. Noah, an adorable and scene stealing four year old, son of Natalie. Kimmie, known for her strange dreams and proclamations of the future and you can’t forget CJ’s family – all of them named for herbs.....
The plot – a bit of traditional romance, perhaps a few too many smart-funny moments that distracted from Natalie and CJ and their steps toward a relationship. They both have plenty to overcome after their marriages ended, and with Natalie’s struggles to stand up for herself and speak her own mind, it was frustrating at times. All of the good and bad in a small town was highlighted here, particularly with the long-held reputations from childhood combined with the “you are from here so this must be important to you” attitudes. A few moments of unrealistic situations were balanced by the actual laugh out loud moments, if perhaps overshadowing the lack of solid ‘grab onto this’ moments of development and discovery.
Narration from Karen White was a highlight, she manages to not go headlong into the slapstick moments that appeared without losing the humor and often wry self-depreciating tone from Natalie. Clear and present, she gives the humor a moment to shine, while trying to bring the best from the characters at all moments.
An interesting start to a series, sure to please those who want a lighter and often sillier listen.
I received an audiobook copy of the title from the author for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.