The Wedding Dare books are an interconnected series of category romances from the Brazen line that take place at a destination wedding of the couple we meet in the prequel novella. Be warned, the heat level is close to scorching (and awesome!)
Falling for the Groomsman by Jen McLaughlin
Baiting the Maid of Honor by Tessa Bailey
Seducing the Bridesmaid by Katee Roberts
Best Man with Benefits by Samanthe Beck
I’m used to reading (and writing) single title length books, so all of these read like novellas to me. They made for a quick, light read, and I finished all of them over a weekend. I very much enjoyed all of them, but I’ll admit to having a favorite—Baiting the Maid of Honor by Tessa Bailey.
For me, Ms. Bailey’s contribution was the most emotionally driven and had the most relatable main characters. The heroine, Julie, is a do-good Southerner who feels the need to make sure everyone else is happy without leaving time for herself. The hero is a dirty-talking, damaged sexy beast—my favorite!—who forces her to enjoy herself in delightful ways while letting go of his own baggage.
My second favorite was the prequel novella, Dare to Resist by Laura Kaye. Loved both of the main characters and would have loved spending more time with them (although the couple does weave through all the stories since it’s about their wedding, but there was a nice, kinky twist to their story that I really enjoyed.)
While I was reading these, I had a hard time turning my writing brain off and kept wondering how in the world the four authors managed to interweave the stories so thoroughly. Each book might feature the same conversation from a different point of view. Did they email or phone constantly? Did they get together for a big weekend sleepover and plot/write them together? The latter sounds a lot more fun!
The best line (IMO) came out of Seducing the Bridesmaid by Katee Robert:
“Southern women. Sweet as pie until they’re pissed, then it’s all shotguns and setting shit on fire.”
This made me laugh so hard. Maybe it’s because I’m from TN and have ties to where the characters are from, Manchester, TN. Or maybe it’s because I’ve taken a home cooked dinner to a sick friend and then turned around and pulled my boots out of the closet to offer to kick another friend’s a-hole spouse in a dark alley. Even though the series takes place in Colorado, there is a definite Southern flavor to several of the stories, which I am a total sucker for.
This was the first interconnected series by different author’s that I’ve read, but it won’t be the last. There is a group of historical authors who have put together a anthology called At the Duke’s Wedding (Ashe, Lindon, Neville, Rodale). That might be my next foray into an interconnected story.
I would highly recommend this series from Entangled. I passed a very enjoyable weekend at the wedding.