Title: First Comes Marriage
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Author: Shira Anthony
Their marriage was supposed to be all business….
When struggling novelist Chris Valentine meets Jesse Donovan, he’s interested in a book contract, or possibly a date. The last thing Chris expects is a marriage proposal from New York City’s most eligible bachelor!
Jesse’s in a pinch. To keep control of his company, he has to marry. So he has valid reasons for offering Chris this business deal: in exchange for living in a gorgeous mansion for a year, playing the doting husband, Chris gets all the writing time he wants and walks away with a million-dollar payoff. Surely Chris can handle that. He can handle living with the most handsome and endearing man he’s ever met, a man he immediately knows he wants in the worst way and can’t have. Or can he?
Recently Dreamspinner Press started a new subscription line called Dreamspun Desires. This line is reminiscent of the old Harlequin/Silhouette books. Like those series, this line puts out 2 books a month. Fans of those older lines will also notice a similar feel to the books in Dreamspun Desires. One of the first books put out for Dreamspun Desires was First Comes Marriage.
This story takes a young man struggling to keep control of his company after the death of his grandfather. Jesse’s grandfather’s will stipulates that Jesse has to be married for a year or he loses the company he has being working so hard on. His solution, strike a deal with a struggling author of course.
Chris writes Steampunk/Urban Fantasy and while he has picked up a small internet following, it is not enough to survive on. The last thing he expects to habit at a public reading is to meet Jesse. When the two become more acquainted he is surprised by the offer the gorgeous business man makes. He’s even more surprised when he takes Jesse up on his deal.
The author does a great job bringing these two alive for the reader. Because of that it is easy to see the chemistry that exists between Jesse and Chris. The strong connection brings them closer together as they learn more about themselves and each other. Of course the story would be boring if it was all smiles and sunshine. Obstacles and misunderstandings are thrown into the way, some of which eventually bring about a separation.
I loved the way this story flows and the author did a great job wrapping it up in a way that is realistic to the story line. The little twists to the story make the reader want to turn the pages to see how it will play out. Readers are sure to enjoy the secondary characters. Both Chris’ mom and Jesse’s step-grandmother help move the story along as well as add a few laughs. I was glad that Jesse and step-grandmother Wanda were able to mend there fences and become the family his grandfather always wanted.
Reviewed by: Lydia
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