USA Today Bestselling Author
When Echo Farren boarded the plane bound for her wedding in her hometown of Lake George, NY she was filled with excitement and joy. That was until she got a text message from her fiancée just as her flight reached cursing altitude that he would not be attending their wedding. To make matters worse, Echo has to find out from a local fireman who used to be her high school sweetheart that her father is up to eyeballs in debt over this wedding.
With only two weeks to go before the big day, Echo does her best to stall, hoping to get her fiancée to either change his mind, or fork over some cash to help her father. Only neither one is going to happen.
Spencer Bryant has been in love with Echo Farren his entire life, but when she made him chose between her and his family, he had to let her go. But now that she was back he was going to do whatever it took to show her that he’s always been the only man for her and that he was the right groom.
Echo is on the flight to her hometown of Lake George when she receives a text from her fiancé. He’s calling off the wedding and says he never loved her. After the initial shock, Echo decides it’s merely cold feet and continues with the plans in place.
Spencer is Echo’s ex-boyfriend, they had been together since they were no more than children. Growing up together, dating all through high school and even college. Unfortunately when Echo decided to be a traveling nurse, Spencer couldn’t and wouldn’t follow her. A fire-fighter can’t jump from job to job across the county on a whim and he has no desire to leave Lake George and his family.
Funny how fate often steps in, Spencer is still in love with Echo and he is always the person she can confide in. It doesn’t help matters that both their parents want them to spend time together.
This is only a part of one of my favorite scenes.
“Look you all grown up and talking about wine,” she said. “You should know I made my father a promise tonight.
” He dropped his head back on the cushion and stared at the sky. “I bet it’s the same one I made mine.”
“And what might that be?”
“To spend a little bit of time with you.”
“Our parents shouldn’t be allowed to speak to one another,” she said.
He brought the glass to his nose and took in a good sniff, enjoying the light aroma. He would still rather have a good hit of Crown Royal, but since he was spending a little time in the past, this would do the trick. “To be frank, I don’t think my folks would have suggested it if your fiancé had shown the other day. Unfortunately, a lot of people are talking about that.”
“You better not be adding fuel to that fire.” She dipped her fingers into the bowl of cheese puffs.
“I wouldn’t do that to you.”
She let out a long breath. “My dad thinks I went to the Mason Jug.”
“Same old crowd of cops and firefighters. But if you had told him you were coming down here, you could have gotten your time in with me and been done with it.”
She laughed. “I don’t think it’s going to work like that. I have a feeling there will be a family dinner involving us.”
“Probably,” he said. “So, why’d you text me and ask if I had some time to spare?”
“I’m sorry to bother you with this, and if you don’t want to talk to me, I understand, but Andy called.”
He shifted in his chair. Her light-brown hair shined under the moonlight. Her blue eyes sparkled like the lake. She was even more beautiful than the last time he’d seen her with her tanned skin and lean, toned muscles. But she’d changed. She wasn’t full of light and hope. Her normal carefree attitude had been replaced with a heaviness that he’d never seen before, and it crushed his heart.
Of course, his mother said the same thing about him.
“It’s okay. I don’t mind.” Oh, he minded all right, but not because he didn’t want to spend time with her or listen to her sweet voice. He just didn’t want to hear her pine over another man. He knew it was wrong for him to want her to still be hung up on him, but it was a truth he could no longer deny when she sat only a foot away. “What did he have to say?”
“That he doesn’t have cold feet.”
Spencer coughed. “As in he’s coming?”
She took a gulp of wine. “As in he doesn’t love me, never loved me, and never wanted to marry me in the first place.”
He reached out and took her hand, thumbing the thick diamond on her finger. “I think that ring says otherwise.”
“Not only did I pick it out, but he wasn’t even there when I bought it, though I did put it on his credit card, so technically, he paid for it.” She tipped her head back and downed the red liquid as if it were water. She reached for the bottle and poured herself what could only be considered a double.
He was tempted to tell her to slow down but thought better of it. “I’m not following.”
“It’s simple. He joked one night about getting married. I took it seriously and ran with it. He never meant it but didn’t bother to stop the train wreck until I was at cruising altitude. And the worst part is now that I’ve had five minutes to think about it all, I should have seen it coming.”
“Do you love Andy?”
“What kind of question is that?”
“An honest one,” he said.
“Of course I do. I wouldn’t go through the motions of a wedding if I didn’t, but if he’s not coming, what am I supposed to do? I’ve tried pleading with him. Begging him. He’s made it clear he doesn’t want to marry me.”
“I know you don’t want to hear this, but it’s better to find out before you got hitched than after.”
“Yeah, but now I’m stuck holding the bag.” She rolled her head and stared at him with tears lining her soft-blue eyes. “I haven’t told my parents, and I’m not going to just yet.”
“That’s a mistake,” he said.
“Well, it’s not your business.”
“But you made it mine when you showed up here at ten in the evening.”
“You promised you wouldn’t say anything.”
“And I won’t, but you need to think about what this is costing your father.”
She tossed a cheese puff at his face. “What the hell do you know about that? Maybe Andy was paying for it.”
She slouched in her chair.
“Exactly. And while I’m sure your father worked his magic to get everything you wanted, I’m sure it wasn’t free, and you don’t just cancel country club reception halls.”
“I’ll figure that out, but I need a few days before I say anything.”
“Why?” he asked.
“You’re kidding, right?” She glared at him. “Besides being humiliated, I don’t want to spend ten days with my family and friends giving me pity looks. It’s bad enough they’re already speculating.”
“The longer you let this charade go on, the harder it’s going to be on everyone.” Spencer contemplated on if he should tell her about the extras her father went all in on for his daughter’s special day. It didn’t matter that Stanley Farren didn’t particularly support this marriage; he loved his daughter and would do anything for her, including finding her dream designer dress which cost a small fortune.
She chewed on her thumbnail.
Jen Talty. The Right Groom: The First Responders Series (Kindle Locations 470-515).
Echo does plenty of soul searching and comes up with the right answers just in time for the illusive Andy to show up. Spencer is her rock and so much more as they both realize their parents are right.
Plenty of fun, laughter, tears and some sizzling heat make this a page turning read.
I can’t wait for then next installment in this series.
5 Contented Purrs for Jen!
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Welcome to my World! I’m a USA Today Bestseller of Romantic Suspense, Contemporary Romance, and Paranormal Romance.
I first started writing while carting my kids to one hockey rink after the other, averaging 170 games per year between 3 kids in 2 countries and 5 states. My first book, IN TWO WEEKS was originally published in 2007. In 2010 I helped form a publishing company (Cool Gus Publishing) with NY Times Bestselling Author Bob Mayer where I ran the technical side of the business through 2016.
I’m currently enjoying the next phase of my life…the empty NESTER! My husband and I spend our winters in Jupiter, Florida and our summers in Rochester, NY. We have three amazing children who have all gone off to carve out their places in the world, while I continue to craft stories that I hope will make you readers feel good and put a smile on your face.