Genre: Contemporary Romance
Age Group: NA/Adult
Publication Date: April 15th 2014
Source: Provided by Netgalley
Experience Ireland—the dramatic beauty, the warm hospitality…and the smoking hot local guys! Imagine nursing a pint in a cozy, authentic country pub, far from Cork's busy city pulse. Getting here took you a plane, bus, taxi and…um, bicycle. But just as you're resigning yourself to drinking beside grey-haired farmers, you see him—a man with the looks and charm to soothe any heartbroken girl. He's your bartender. Your really, really gorgeous bartender. For American Jamie Webb—recently dumped and housesitting for two weeks—Connor Kelleher is like a six-course feast after a 23-year starvation diet. But it's gotta be casual. She's just begun rerouting her life after a three-year man-related detour. Still, a sexy romp (or twenty!) with Sexy McBartender? But what happens when Jamie's best-laid plans for no future plans with any man begin to change?
I'm really angry with this book right now mainly because the main character Jamie Webb gets to hook up with a hot Irishman and I can't! I've always wanted to visit Ireland and whimsically meet a charming local at a corner pub and have hot monkey sex. Well if I can't live it then why not experience it vicariously through Jamie right?
From the start I knew I Jamie was a girl I would like. After a breakup with her boyfriend of four years where he upended her life yet again she's come to Ireland on vacation before she starts school. Any woman who is strong enough to pick herself up and visit a place almost worlds away such as Ireland is OK in my book. Jamie has spent the last few years of her life doing what her boyfriend wanted by moving to California only to have to move herself back to Boston when that fizzled out. She's a stronger woman than me because if I had rearranged my entire life for a guy and then he dumped me for my efforts my inner Medea would have come screaming out! her first night in Ireland fresh off the plane she meets the sexy and charming Connor. The instant connection and chemistry between them is just the tip of the iceberg for the two and for the next ten days they spend her time there getting to know each other. Inside and out.
I was having a Deja Vu' moment throughout this book and I couldn't pinpoint why until Connor and Jamie end up in a place called Dingle. That's when the light bulb went off and Her Best Laid plans reminded me of the highly UNDERRATED film Leap Year with Amy Adams. Similar in plot both stories revolve around a woman passing through Ireland and falling for a charming Irish guy. Where Matthew Goode portrayed a gruff and somewhat off putting bloke Connor was the opposite with his open personality, engaging charm and sexy swagger. I loved him right off the bat and call me biased but maybe it was because he was Irish and I have a hard on for accents. Connor was a playful chap and I loved his banter with Jamie throughout. Much like her he's had his share of life circumstances that have held him back from pursuing his schooling and I loved that the two bonded over this. They had similar interests in career paths where Jamie was interested in architectural design Connor was more into how things worked together to make something extraordinary.
The vacation romance fling was sexy and exciting watching Connor and Jamie spend more time together. I thought as the book chugged along that they made a cute couple and wondered how everything would pan out for them. Then I got worried because I found myself falling a little too hard for a couple born of a fling with an expiration date on it. With Jamie living in Boston and Connor living in Ireland I had to wonder to myself what kind of relationship could they possibly have and why are they falling deeper into this if they have to say goodbye. I'm only newly familiar with McKenna's writing but I'm slowly discovering she is a genius at writing stories with couples who feel realistic in portrayal and the situations surrounding them. I didn't have to be sad long because she brings everything together in her sexy little novella to a full circle that had me misty eyed and excited. Jamie and Connor were a great couple and I highly enjoyed going on the journey with them.
McKenna brought this little tale to life with every new destination the characters visited and getting a clear picture of my beloved fantasy destination of Ireland was an amazing thing for her to accomplish. A friend of mine swears by her work and now I'm slowly starting to agree with every new book of hers I open. Her Best Laid Plans was a delightful novella packed full of witty banter, engaging characters and a story book ending to make you melt into a puddle. This may have been my second experience with this author but I can already tell she's one to watch out for so if you haven't checked out her books yet I have to suggest you hop on the bandwagon wit the quickness!
~ His blue eyes were half-closed, lids looking heavy. Languid. Lips parted. If sex were a season, it had settled over him in full bloom. Kindle 18%
~ Yes, she'd be all the way across those endless waves...all of her except her heart. That piece she'd have to haul back through the Atlantic on a string, hand over hand over hand, for as long as it took her to get over this man. Months? Longer? Shit, she was the worst rebounder ever. She should've looked up the definition of a fling and tattooed it on her palm. Kindle 70%
~ He was so many lovers in one -- worshipping, needy, selfish, rough, tender, sensual, playful. A dozen flavors of male in a single body. Kindle 78%
About The Author:
Cara McKenna writes smart erotica—sexy stories with depth. A little dark, a little funny, always emotional. She also writes red-hot romance under the name Meg Maguire. Her wonderful publishers are Ellora's Cave, Harlequin Blaze, Loose-Id, Penguin / Intermix, Samhain, and Signet Eclipse. She loves writing sexy, character-driven stories about strong-willed men and women who keep each other on their toes, and bring one another to their knees. Cara (writing as Meg) was a 2010 Golden Heart finalist, a 2011 and 2013 Romantic Times Reviewers' Choice Award nominee, and a 2012 Golden Leaf finalist. Cara is represented by Laura Bradford, of the Bradford Literary Agency. Before becoming a purveyor of red-hot romance and smart erotica, Cara was a record store bitch, a lousy barista, a decent designer, and an overly enthusiastic penguin handler. Cara now writes full-time and lives north of Boston with her bearded husband. When she's not trapped in her own head she can usually be found in the kitchen, the coffee shop, or jogging around the nearest duck-filled pond. She is a very proud member of the Romance Writers of America® and her local New England Chapter.