In Yates’s strained ninth contemporary set in Copper Ridge, Ore. (after One Night Charmer), mayoral candidate Lydia Carpenter drunkenly creates a scandal that could ruin her chances for election. When she attends a wedding where the bride fails to appear, Lydia runs off to Las Vegas with the groom, Colton West, in an effort to spare him the humiliation. They awaken the following morning to find out that they got married, have consummated the union, and texted the happy news to their closest friends. What they already knew is that they hate each other. By now the reader will be wondering why people who despise each other nonetheless eloped; this is never satisfactorily explained. Colton has been responsible for his family since his older brother took off years earlier, and his father’s infidelity provided him with a half-brother. He doesn’t want to add more shame to the well-known family name, and of course Lydia has her political ambitions to consider. In an attempt to avoid more gossip, Lydia and Colton agree to stay married until after the election, their pretense opening the door to something real. The townspeople’s easy acceptance of the marriage is as unbelievable as the gradually revealed reason for the protagonists’ initial mutual dislike. (July)
Reviewed on: 05/23/2016 Release date: 06/28/2016 Genre: Fiction
During the Covid-19 crisis, Publishers Weekly is providing free digital access to our magazine, archive, and website. To receive the access to the latest issue delivered to your inbox free each week, enter your email below.