Saturday, June 7, 2014

What a Woman Needs (Manley Maids #2) by Judi Fennell

Big shot movie star Bryan Manley is destined for fame and fortune, not a repeat of his penny-pinching "normal" childhood. But a bet is a bet, so he agrees to play maid for Beth Hamilton—as long as he can use his servitude as research for his next role, and then resume his life in the spotlight.

After her husband’s death and the publicity surrounding it, all Beth needs is a quiet, normal life for herself and her children. She never expected a new Prince Charming to show up at her door, let alone as the new maid. But when the paparazzi follow, Beth is sure of one thing: Bryan has to go.

Then flirtation turns into seduction, and Bryan needs to convince Beth he’s more man than maid—or an actor playing a maid. Because this latest gig as the love of Beth Hamilton’s life just might be the role of a lifetime…

Type: Contemporary Romance
Heat: 3 out of 5--though limited
Rating: 4 out of 5

Amazon | All Romance | Book Depository | BAM | Goodreads

*throws herself down in a girly swoon* Yeah. What a Woman Needs? Definitely a Bryan Manley. Whewboy. Definitely. I've been having a good time with Judi Fennell's Manly Maids series as the Manley brothers gloriously lose a poker game to their baby sister and end up...working for her as maids at her cleaning business for an entire month. Watching drop dead gorgeous movie star Bryan land a job and wind up with his hands full of a frazzled widow and her whole brood of children who desperately need a little healing was a sight to see. *nods*

There were so many wonderful and touching moments as Bryan slowly helps this family heal from their loss. Moments that choked me up, had me all teary and just falling for the whole lot of them. Some blasted funny ones too since there's really quite a herd--of both the 2 and 4 legged variety. I really liked these two together. Beth and Bryan are from such different worlds. High glamour vs regular life and all it's ordinary moments. But they so worked. Things could get a little awkward as they sussed out their new situation but it was kinda endearing and oh the connection right from the start and the chemistry was nice even if things go way way slow.
"Thank you." She tried to keep the huskiness out of her voice.

"No problem. The dog managed to wedge himself in there pretty good."
Beth gnawed on her bottom lip for a second as she watched Maggie skip off, then looked up at Bryan. "I meant for what you just said to Maggie. That I saved Sherman. I know it shouldn't be a big deal, but--"

"Hey, you don't have to explain. Or thank me." He touched her arm in a companionable sort of way--until electrify shot up her arm. His, too, if his reaction was anything to go by because he yanked his hand away so quickly it was awkward.



"What were you--"

"You first."

Awkward reigned supreme.
Bryan is a pretty great guy. He's got a few hang ups because of his childhood that make him near obsessed with his career but he's a solid one and definitely has a way with kids. He always seemed to know just what to do or say to them to get them past the hurdles life threw in their way. From a surly teen boy that needed help finding his way to a little girl who just wants a friend who will be there for her. He was near too perfect  in that regard but honestly those moments were so heart wrenching sweet it worked for me. And oh the things he could do to a woman's heart. Whew.

Then there's Beth. Who is pretty much going on fumes trying to hold her family together. I liked Beth. She and Bryan could both be a bit frustrating with how long they resisted and not always talking things out but I got her worries of not being perfect compared to the glamorous women he was surrounded by, fears of taking a risk and just being overwhelmed and needing a break. She tried her hardest to be supermom and my heart just went out to her as she battled all of the emotional things being thrown her way. Including her supposed best friends who were by far my least favorite thing about the book. Rude and low class all the way as they treated Bryan like meat and tried to push Beth into something she wasn't ready for. I was so glad they had limited page time. Let me tell you. There might have been a throw down if I'd met these women in real life. *nods*

Other than that though, What a Woman Needs was a lovely romance that totally pulled at my heartstrings as this group becomes a family and fights for a happier future. Fennell did an awesome job with such a big group of kids adding chaos, humor and love in perfect measures. They're far from perfect but they're pretty wonderful. It's a great read for those who just love romance and second chances in life.

Have you read Fennell? Have a favorite?
Do you like heroes or heroines that are parents in your reads?
What about every day life moments?

More Fennell on herding cats!

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