Thursday, May 7, 2015

Review: Every Bride Needs a Groom

Every Bride Needs a Groom
By Janice Thompson
Brides with Style, #1
Revell, 2015


Somewhere in a sea of tulle and taffeta, satin and crepe, Katie Fisher needs to find a key ingredient of the perfect wedding--the groom.

Small-town girl Katie Fisher is busy planning her fairy-tale wedding. Sure, her boyfriend hasn't managed to pop the question just yet, but that doesn't mean she shouldn't enter a contest in Texas Bride magazine to win the dress of her dreams, right? Anyway, she's sure he'll be getting down on one knee any time now. And a one-of-a-kind designer dress doesn't just fall out of the sky right when you need it.

But when Katie's boyfriend takes a job in another town and breaks up with her--on the very same day she wins her dream dress--her world is turned upside down. Dare she go to Dallas to claim her prize? And will the hunky pro basketball player who runs the beyond-swanky bridal shop--yeah, you read that right--discover her humiliating secret if she does?

My thoughts

Until connecting with Every Bride Needs a Groom, I didn't realize it was possible to read an entire book with a smile on my face. This is a delightful, laugh-out-loud story with spiritual truths cleverly woven throughout, and I enjoyed every minute spent in reading.

Sam's Restaurant - Fairfield, TX
Much of the story takes place in the small town of Fairfield, Texas - a charming southern community that Janice has very effectively put on the map. Anyone who has had the pleasure to visit the Fairfield area might recognize a couple of local places that feature prominently in the story - namely, Sam's Restaurant and Dairy Queen.

To say that Katie and Brady are delightful is putting it mildly. The idea of a young girl planning and dreaming of her perfect wedding day is something a lot of readers can easily identify with, but Katie took it to the extreme of focusing entirely on the wedding and not so much on the guy who would surely ask for her hand in marriage any day now. Usually it's the heroes that I quickly connect with, but it was Katie in this story. Brady, an injured 6'4" point guard for the Dallas Mavericks, is a fascinating leading man and I hope to see his character developed more fully in the next book.

Dairy Queen - Fairfield, TX
This story has some wonderfully quirky secondary characters that I absolutely loved. In fact, if I didn't know better, I'd say that Janice was inspired by some "colorful" people in my own North Georgia family tree. When Katie's Aunt Alva said, "Well, cut off my legs and call me shorty," I could just hear a cousin's voice. And I had to laugh out loud as Katie reflected on the large church where Lori-Lou worshipped . . . Let's just say that my ancestors would totally agree with Katie's Mama . . .

"They called the large metal building with its massive parking lot and drum-infused music a megachurch. No doubt Mama would've called it a rock and roll concert and would've scheduled an appointment with the pastor forthwith to change the structure of the service to include more hymns and fewer flashing lights."

Yet, in the midst of all this humor, Janice gently encourages us to examine our own lives. Where are we when it comes to concepts like tradition vs. change, comfort zone vs. the unknown, bitterness vs. forgiveness? Katie runs ahead of God in her planning . . . Boy, does that ever hit close to home! I often felt that, through her characters, Janice was looking me in the eye and saying, "Making plans and taking control of your own life . . . Hmm. So, how's that workin' out for you?"

I love it when a story thoroughly entertains, but causes me to reflect at the same time, and that is exactly what this story did. For its entertainment value, laughter, and southern charm, I highly recommend Every Bride Needs a Groom.

Katie and Brady's road to happiness hasn't been fully paved yet; in fact, I suspect there may be a few bumps on that road. I eagerly anticipate book #2, Every Girl Gets Confused, which releases in October 2015. Does that title foreshadow what's to come, or not?!


Janice Thompson is a seasoned romance author and screenwriter. An expert at pulling the humor from the situations we get ourselves into, Thompson offers an inside look at the wedding business, drawing on her own experiences as a wedding planner. She is the author of the hugely popular Weddings by Bella series, the Backstage Pass series, and the Weddings by Design series. She lives in Texas.

Have fun connecting with Janice online at, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Goodreads

Thank you to Revell for providing a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

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