Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Review: The Perfect Bargain by Julia London (writing as Jessa McAdams)

The Perfect Bargain 
by Julia London as Jessa McAdams
Series:  How To Marry a Highlander #1
Pub. Date:  June 30, 2015
Publisher:  Entangled Lovestruck
Pages:  179
Format:  eARC
Source:  NetGalley

My Rating:  
Sultry Scale:

American lass seeks brawny Scot...

As if being newly single isn’t brutal enough, Sloane Chatfield's friends are getting obnoxious about setting her up. When Sloane insists she's waiting for a certain sexy fictional Highlander to come along, her friends surprise her with a trip to Scotland to find her a new boyfriend. She’d rather have a root canal. But if she can find a Highland hunk to “break her heart” before her friends arrive…

In a remote Highland village, Galen Buchanan is struggling to keep the family pub afloat. Everything is falling apart, he’s running out of money, and now there's an opinionated American lass parked at his best table, driving him mad. But then Sloane asks Galen to be her pretend Highland boyfriend...and offers him enough money to save the pub. It’s only for a few days, he figures. What's the worst that could happen?

I was super duper excited for this book when I started it and discovered that it is a modern romance where our heroine will be journeying to Scotland to find her own Jamie Fraser. I have plans to do this myself next year! (At least I tell my mother I will be importing a husband so she will get off my back for a little while. And I cannot WAIT to go to Scotland and Ireland!) Anyway, back on topic. So I was super excited about this book, thought it would be a funny little How To guide for when I travel. I enjoyed the premise of the book, as Outlander fans might. I loved the fact that Sloane had to battle coos and goats and a myriad of other animals walking around the town. I liked the charm of the remote Highland village, and the people and yes, even the Scottish brogue. I actually liked Galen's character better when he was being a bit gruff because it seemed more authentic than his bouts of poetic speech. I certainly won't mind peeking in some pubs in Scotland to see if I can find myself a Jamie/Galen/Ruari. So I liked all the charm and cutesy factor.

I also felt bad for what Sloane went through in "The Breakup" - hearing those things from a fiance would definitely put a crimp in any girl's self-esteem. I can see why she would be cautious and throwing herself into her work.  And I related to her a little bit because I have been through a broken engagement and all the stress, drama and heartache that entails.  But other than that, I was missing a connection with her character - I think it was her prim/uptight personality (and the spoiled rich girl part).  I did not like Sloane's friends at all.  They seemed to steamroll over her and everyone else.

I was really rooting for Sloane to find that perfect Jamie Fraser - and Galen certainly sounded like he looked the part (even if only wallys wear kilts).  The relationship seemed a bit superficial, but that may be a consequence of the book length.  I would have preferred to see more emotion in the relationship, more steamy moments, and more interaction outside of the "deal" the pair struck.  That being said, I will definitely continue reading the series as it has a lot of potential.  I hope more of the series is released before my trip next year.

I received an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. 

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Author Info

Julia London is the New York Times, USA Today, and Publisher's Weekly bestselling author of more than thirty romantic fiction novels. She is the author of the popular Cabot Sisters historical series, including The Trouble with Honor, The Devil Takes a Bride, and the The Scoundrel and the Debutante. She is also the author of several acclaimed contemporary romances, including The Cedar Springs series, and the recent Homecoming Ranch, Return to Homecoming Ranch, and The Perfect Homecoming. Julia has added a short contemporary series to her titles as well, including The Perfect Bargain, writing under the name Jessa McAdams.

Julia is the recipient of the RT Bookclub Award for Best Historical Romance and a four time finalist for the prestigious RITA award for excellence in romantic fiction. 

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