We’re back at Happily Inc., the premier wedding destination in America. Maya is marrying Del Mitchell, bringing the Mitchell family and other familiar characters from Fool’s Gold to celebrate. Like a true fairy tale, we get to meet the wolf and see the darker underbelly under all the sparkle and light. Readers who enjoy a meaty tale will enjoy all the facets of this story that showcase Ms. Mallery’s talent.
At nineteen, Mathias Mitchell’s artistic hopes were crushed by his father who was perhaps a little afraid of his son’s talent. Now Mathias creates dishware and pottery that in no way uses even a drop of his talent. He downs his emotions under his charming smile and one-night stands with the bridesmaids who flock to his hometown, which is the ultimate wedding destination.
Carol Lund had once believed she was special. School and cruel teenagers robbed her of her specialness such that she no longer has confidence in her ability to attract a handsome man or find love. Carol covered up her hurts and lived her life focused on her beloved animals, lusting after Mathias from afar. As her relationship with Mathias slowly moves from the platonic into something “more,” she still does not believe she has what it would take to keep a man like Mathias. Little does she know that she’s slowly but surely awakening the artistic heart of Mathias as he sketches her and her giraffe, looking for that perfect vision that he can cast into glass.
As the Mitchell family comes into town and gathers under Mathias’ roof to celebrate Maya and Del’s wedding, all the bad and ugly that’s been seething and simmering under the covers breaks out into an open confrontation between father and sons, with their mother trying to play peace keeper and stuff it all back where it’s always been. Can Mathias and his emerging artist survive or will his fledgling relationship with Carol become a casualty to the spewing volcano?
Sophie the beagle and Millie the giraffe bring in a nice touch of laughter and charm. This is not the usual lighthearted romance that we’ve been enjoying in this series. Ms. Mallery gives full rein to her artistic talent with the emotional intensity of the Mitchell family relationships and the toll that it’s taken on each one of the members.
Mathias Mitchell’s easy smile hides a world of hurt. After the worst kind of family betrayal, he moves to Happily Inc., California—the wedding destination town supplies a steady stream of bridesmaids, perfect for his “no promises, no pain” lifestyle. Yet he can’t stop watching for his beautiful, elusive neighbor on the animal preserve behind their homes.
Gamekeeper Carol Lund knows she’s not special enough to attract an alpha male like Mathias, so his offer to help her adopt a herd for her lonely giraffe is surprising—and his determined seduction, even more so. But just as she finally welcomes him into her bed, his careless actions crush her heart. Will she give him a second chance to prove she’ll always come first in his heart?