Thursday, August 6, 2015

Review - - A Wedding on Primrose Street


A Wedding on Primrose Street
By Sheila Roberts
Publisher: Harlequin Mira
Release Date: July 28, 2015


Anne Richardson is a happily married woman looking forward to celebrating her twenty-fifth anniversary with a devoted husband who still makes her heart beat faster, the loving mother of one tattooed daughter, and a successful Seattle wedding planner. Anne has dealt with all types of brides in her career, but tactfully handling even the most demanding bride is less stressful than facing the dreaded Momzilla, the mother of the bride who micromanages every detail of the wedding, running roughshod over the bride’s wishes in the process. Anne certainly never thought she would turn into a Momzilla, but when her daughter Laney announces her engagement, Anne is determined every detail of the wedding will be perfect, according to Anne’s dream of the perfect wedding. She may have given in on Laney’s choice of a dress, even though she’s not really comfortable with Laney’s displaying all her tattoos, but no way is her daughter getting married in Vegas when Primrose Haus, a gorgeous restored Victorian house in Icicle Falls, offers the ideal, romantic setting for a June wedding.

Roberta Gilbert, the septuagenarian owner of Primrose Haus, has been planning weddings for three decades. Unfortunately, she is far more successful at juggling all the details surrounding weddings than she is at managing a conflict-free relationship with her daughter. Roberta loves her daughter, but she doesn’t trust her to meet Roberta’s own meticulous standards where Primrose Haus events are concerned. So when Daphne arrives in Icicle Falls after the breakup of her third marriage with plans to help her mother at Primrose Haus, Roberta is less than enthusiastic. Troubled by Daphne’s record of poor choices when it comes to the men in her life, Roberta is also determined that Daphne not get involved with the hunky but divorced gardener.

Can these wedding planning mothers accept the daughters they love as autonomous adults and allow them to make their own decisions, or will choices Anne and Roberta made in their pasts continue to complicate the mother-daughter relationship?

Sheila Roberts takes readers back to Icicle Falls for the seventh book in this popular series. The focus this time is not on romance but on the often fraught relationship between mothers and daughters. I suspect that most readers, even as they smile at Roberts’s trademark humor, will find it all too easy to relate to the difficulties these characters face. The very fact that both the twenty-something Laney and the fifty-something Daphne struggle to balance living their own lives and pleasing their mothers suggests how mother-daughter issues endure. It is common for women’s fiction authors to write about abusive or controlling mothers, but it is rarer for such fiction to focus on the conflicts in relationships in which the mother-daughter bond is a loving one. Roberts has consistently included a look at such relationships in this series.

Although Wedding on Primrose Lane is not a romance, it includes a look at romantic relationships from those in the early stage of mutual attraction through the giddiness of young love to long-term marriages that can mean heartbreak or abiding happiness. I especially loved that seventy-one-year-old Roberta gets a romantic interest. And the wedding tales of various Icicle Falls pairs that end the novel were delightful, both sweet and funny.

A Sheila Roberts book is always a fun read, and this one follows the pattern. If you like stories that evoke an abundance of smiles and offer likeable characters with a high relatability quotient, you should give this one a try.

~Janga

7 comments:

  1. Thank you for introducing this story to us. Interestingly, when I scanned the Romance Dish blurb in my email this morning, the name Anne Richardson jumped out at me because it was my grandmother's and great grandmother's name. I will definitely check this book out especially since it has a mother-daughter theme. Also, I appreciate you telling us it isn't a romance right up front or else I would be disappointed if I was expecting one.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Sounds like a book I would enjoy.
    Helen L.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Oh, the horror! I have a double subject-verb error in my last sentence that neither Word nor my trained English professor's eye caught. "And the wedding tales of various Icicle Falls pairs that ends the novel was delightful, both sweet and funny" should be "And the wedding tales of various Icicle Falls pairs that end the novel were delightful, both sweet and funny." I am blushing in shame.


    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Right there with you, Janga. I should have caught that. I'll blame it on proofreading long past my bedtime but, really, no excuse. So sorry!

      Delete
    2. LOL. Don't worry about that. I am so tire at the end of the day, I would never have noticed! Great review!

      Delete
    3. Not your fault, PJ. Mea culpa. Thanks, Sharlene. Somehow it is always easier to see the errors once they are public. I always advised my students to print a copy to proofread because many people find it easier to spot errors on the page than on the screen. But that advice is not practical for our situation.

      Delete