The Wedding Agreement is the third novel in the Strictly Business series by Elizabeth Hayley. If you’re looking for a fun, sexy read, this book is just for you!
[Some Spoilers; For Mature Audiences]
Rating: 4 of 5 stars
Alex Walker is an FBI agent who tracks down serial killers. To say his work is stressful is putting it mildly. When his ex-wife tells him she’s going to be traveling for the summer and can’t take their seven year old daughter, he assumes he’ll get to spend some much needed quality time with her. Due to his erratic work schedule, though, his ex is planning on leaving their daughter, Nina, with her parents.
In an attempt to help her friend keep his daughter through the summer, Cassidy Mullen announces their engagement, hoping that the stability will make Alex look good to his ex. Things start getting really complicated when their pretend engagement and relationship starts to feel very real for both of them.
The Wedding Agreement was such a fun novel! It’s the third in the Strictly Business series but it can be read as a stand-alone book. I hadn’t read any of the others, but now I want to because of how much I enjoyed this one.
Alex and Cass have been friends for a while. They met through their mutual friends, and over time, they became more friends with benefits that just friends. Despite sleeping together regularly, they both keep their lives pretty separate.
Cass knows about his job and daughter, and Alex knows how important her job is to her and Cassidy’s thoughts on being married and a mother. They get along so well, and the dialogue is great between them. There’s easy banter and when things gets steamy, it’s not over the top dirty talk that takes you out of the moment. It feels like two genuine people instead of caricatures of people for the sake of notching up the romance factor.
The issues dealt with in the book are complicated, but I think the author does a great job not villianizing anyone. These characters have flaws, but they mature adults who can apologize and talk through things. I was very happy that she didn’t try and make Alex’s ex the “evil ex” stereotype. Tessa is a good mother who made some bad mistakes, but she only wants what’s best for her daughter. She also recognizes when she’s wrong and handles it appropriately.
I think the same thing can be said for Cass. She’s not perfect, but she’s never deceitful. She’s always very upfront with Alex about her desires and even open to the feelings she has for him as they start to develop. I love that she sees him going down the wrong path and tries to pull him back. Not because she’s feeling ignored but because he told her before that he never wanted to be that guy again.
Alex is a good hero, too. I admire is desire to be a part of his daughter’s life. The way he treats Cass is really stellar. He allows her to be her own person, and that’s who he falls in love with. She’s a great balance for him with her loud, larger than life personality.
Cass didn’t let herself think about it for too long, but she recognized the moment for what it was. She’d known she had the feelings for quite some time, but right then, in front of the picture booth, was when she finally became okay with the fact that she was in love with Alex Walker.
Without a doubt, I’d definitely recommend this book to anyone looking for a great love story between two very good friends. It’s one of those stories that changes right before you eyes, but it’s so subtle that you don’t even notice the shift between fake fiancés to real relationship.
Cassidy Mullen, I love you. I’m not entirely sure when it happened, but at some point all of our pretending became real for me.
Plus, the love scenes! Like I said before, they’re not over the top with the language, but there’s a particular scene that involves some loving while driving that just UNF…you’ll need to take a moment after. Also, dirty alleyway sexin’ when the apartment was just too far!
What I’m saying is, this book has it all! Swoons, steamy scenes, and most importantly, a HEA.
Thank you to the publisher for the advanced copy of this novel!