REVIEW: Vision in White by Nora RobertsFriday, May 22, 2009 1:00
This is the first book in a new series by Nora Roberts. It’s also the first non-paranormal series of Roberts in a few years, and while those are fun, it’s nice to see a good character driven story from an author that has always done one so well. This series, called the Bride Quartet, follows four best friends who run a wedding planning business in their hometown in Connecticut. I’m assuming that the following books in the series will come out every six months or so, as the next book is due at the end of November.
The prologue is a charming look at four girls who like to play Wedding Day. This particular day is when Mackensie Elliot, called Mac, discovers that she loves to take pictures that capture a perfect moment. She’s the wedding photographer for Vows, the wedding planning business run by herself and her best friends Parker, Emma and Laurel. Mac is good at her job and she loves it. Her home, which is the former guesthouse on Parker’s family estate and home to Vows, is full of her pictures of weddings, some of which have made magazine covers.
Mac is thrown for a bit of a loop when she meets Carter Maguire. A former high school classmate, and now an English teacher at the same high school, Carter comes in with his sister to help her plan her wedding. Though rather bookish and a bit shy, Carter is still nursing a high school crush on Mac and when he sees her again, he decides to take his chance and asks Mac out on a date.
Mac, of course, is dealing with some of her own issues and Carter is not her usual type and she decides to have a fling, even though she knows Carter is a committed type. There are some roadblocks in the way, like Mac’s mother who always asks her for money, among other emotional needs and Carter’s ex who is along the same vein as Mac’s mother. Mac has to take her life into her own hands, before she can start a new one with Carter.
Carter is such a sweet, caring guy, a little bit of a beta, but he’s got a steel underneath that gives Mac exactly what she needs. Though he never really saw his ex for what she was, he sees Mac’s mother for the selfish, self-centered and toxic person that she is, which helps Mac to overcome that last leap to get out of her mother’s shadow. Carter may be a little too good to be true, but his ex shows that he is a bit clueless about women, and even though he gets some interesting advice from a married colleague, the way he wins Mac over is tender, sweet and supportive.
Mac, though a strong and independent woman, is a pushover when it comes to her mother. That relationship, and how she gets out from under it, make her a better character by the end of the book than when she started. Going from giving her mother $3,000 to get out of the state to go to a spa for a few days, to the very necessary refusal a the end of the book is a hard journey to make. Carter and her three best friends are there to support her, but that weakness to her mother is a little hard to swallow when she’s confident and strong in most of the rest of the parts of her life.
Well, except for the men in her life. Mac stays away from men like Carter because she thinks with her mother’s example she won’t have a stable, happily ever after. She’s a photographer because she captures the perfect moment, to remember a happy present, but can’t usually see a future beyond the next shoot or event. But she does overcome this all by the end giving her and Carter their happy ending.
I’m excited for this series and Bed of Roses, the next book, will be out around Thanksgiving. So keep a lookout for it and go get this one to read in the meantime. It’s a good Memorial Day or beach read.
Nora cordially invites readers to meet childhood friends Parker, Emma, Laurel, and Mac–founders of Vows, one of Connecticut’s premier wedding planning companies
Wedding photographer Mackensie “Mac” Elliot is most at home behind the camera, but her focus is shattered moments before an important wedding rehearsal when she bumps into the bride-to-be’s brother . . . an encounter that has them both seeing stars.
A stable, safe English teacher, Carter Maguire is definitely not Mac’s type. But a casual fling might be just what she needs to take her mind off bridezillas. Of course, casual flings can turn into something more when you least expect it. And Mac will have to turn to her three best friends–and business partners–to see her way to her own happy ending.
Read an excerpt.