Thursday, February 27, 2014

Blog Tour Stop and Review: Rules of Engagement by Amber Gilchrist



Blurb: 

For Annemarie Whitted, her youngest sister’s engagement starts as a happy event, and ends as a slap in the face when she comes to the harsh realization that she’s a failure at relationships, a person in stasis. Annemarie is motivated and organized, a woman on a mission, and she’s getting married now.
Her Rules of Engagement ensure she’ll make the right choice, and her committee will find her potential eternal companions. She assigns the job to her closest sister, Lisa, and Lisa’s husband, Tanner. Of course, Tanner comes with baggage— his brother, Ben, Annemarie’s lifelong nemesis.

The war between the two of them gives a brand new meaning to Annemarie’s Rules of Engagement, and his presence isn’t helping her at all. Especially when he disapproves of her methods and questions every step she makes. Especially when their forced proximity makes each of them really see each other for the first time. Especially when she discovers that her heart has secret corners she never knew, and that the Rules might have been her biggest mistake of all.

Review:

When I first read the blurb for this book, I knew I had to read it. I don’t usually read LDS romance books, but I really enjoyed this one. It was witty, the characters felt well-developed and real to me, and the story pulled in immediately. The main issue addressed in the book of feeling your biological clock ticking is becoming more common among LDS women every day. Although I’ve never been in Annmarie’s situation (I was married at 18), I’ve felt at times that my life wasn’t quite going where I wanted, and that’s something that everyone can identify with.

Ben, the brother of Annemarie's brother-in-law, isn’t your typical romance novel hero. He’s annoying, messy, antisocial, nerdy, and pessimistic. As the story progressed and I got to know him better, those weaknesses either became endearing or they disappeared altogether. The way Gilchrist achieved that was subtly, but impressively accomplished. By the end of the story, I saw Ben as an attractive, caring, genius, passionate man any woman would be proud to call her own.

Their love story was woven so expertly it often left me feeling breathless. I couldn’t put the story down from page one, and I only stopped reading it to take bathroom or food breaks.  For many days afterward, Ben and Annmarie’s story stayed with me, and I found myself reliving my favorite parts of the story. I highly recommend this book to anyone, married or unmarried, who loves a good, clean romance.

About the author: 

Amber Gilchrist lives in New Mexico with her husband and three children. She writes YA for upper teens, as well as LDS Romantic Comedies. She calls her lifetime of jumping from one job to another 'experience' for her books and not an inability to settle down. Amber loves mysteries and a good, happy romance. She also loves to laugh. Sometimes she likes all of them together.

A fan of quirky movies and indie books, Amber likes to be with her family, is socially inept, and fears strangers and small yippy dogs. She alternates between writing and being a mom and wife. She tries to do both at the same time but her kids don't appreciate being served lunch and told, "This is the hot dog of your discontent." So mostly she writes when everyone else is in bed.

Amber loves to hear from readers and can be reached at ambergilchristbooks@gmail.com