Monday, June 17, 2013

VBT: Where's the Groom? Review & Excerpt


Ashley, just turning thirty, is stuck with a string of bad dates that keep getting worse. The last of her group of friends to be single, she’s quickly becoming hopeless about finding The One.

When a friend convinces her to attend a new-age workshop on making your dreams come true, she gets onto a roller coaster she can’t get off of. The poignant and hilarious comedy of errors begins. The workshop sweeps through her life like a tornado and turns her reality upside down. She is told: visualize it, and he will come. But Ashley takes it seriously, and before she knows it, she’s planning a wedding. There’s only one problem: there’s no groom.

Things quickly spiral out of control as one misunderstanding after another occurs, and Ashley’s friends and family find out a wedding is happening, and want to know who the groom is. Backed into a corner, she finds herself having to lie, and to make her wedding planning more and more a reality. Things intensify as Ashley chooses her bridesmaids and is caught in a whirlwind of looking for dresses, choosing a venue, finding a band, and everything else. Soon a date is set, invitations are sent out, and there is no backing out!

In the meantime, Ashley is desperately dating, hoping for The One to show up in time! In a shocking ending with a twist, Ashley draws true love into her life in the most unexpected way.

         The late April evening was quickly growing cool as breezes blew up from the ocean tossing Ashley’s long, blonde, hair onto her face.  Ashley’s wavy hair was one of her best features and she’d always been proud of it.  She pushed it back onto her neck now as she and Brad walked along the promenade, barely looking at each other or talking.  Ashley didn’t know if the chill she was feeling was from the wind or the distance that seemed to have suddenly grown between them.  It was inexplicable. Their first three dates had gone wonderfully. And now this.  It was becoming a pattern for her.
Things would start out great in her relationships, but very soon on into dating, the excitement petered out, and things turned sour. Ashley had no idea why, but the pattern had become more intense these past few months.  It happened more quickly, and left her feeling more and more shaky about herself.  
            Ashley was slim and beautiful with a lithe figure and never had any trouble attracting guys her whole life long.  She came from a fine family, had a job she loved and a beautiful apartment in Santa Monica, with a patio overlooking the hills.  All these years she’d enjoyed her freedom, built her career as a graphic designer, met new friends, roller bladed, ran in marathons, sketched on the beach.  But now, her thirtieth birthday was fast approaching and it was time for her to settle down.  She knew it and so did everyone else. By now most of her friends were married or engaged. It seemed as if the whole world had someone, except her.
As she and Brad walked along in silence, Ashley let out a long sigh, and Brad turned his head and looked over at her.
“Something the matter?” he asked almost gruffly.
“It turned so cold so fast,” Ashley murmured under her breath, just loud enough for him to hear.
Brad ran his hands through his dark brown hair and looked away.
“Is something wrong, Brad?” Ashley managed to ask, as the wind grew stronger around them.
He stopped, turned away and looked at the ocean, where the waves rolled in and out oblivious to what was going on at the shore.  Ashley and Brad had met through work, at one of her company’s trade shows that she’d done the designs for. They’d started out on a high note, enjoying each other’s company, having a lot to talk about, knowing many people in common. Ashley told her friends she was excited about him, and they couldn’t wait to hear what happened next.
Ashley’s friends and family sat at the edge of their seats, waiting to hear good news from her. They called regularly to get the details of her latest dates and cheered her on relentlessly. In the beginning Ashley liked it, but now she did not. It was upsetting to have to answer to everyone and hear the long silences on the other end of the phone when things fell flat. It was becoming a ritual, and now it had happened again. Brad had suddenly become withdrawn. Had she done something to cause it? Ashley had no idea. As the evening was coming to an end, he actually seemed sullen and reserved.
Ashley took a step closer to him and then stopped cold.  She wasn’t into chasing - not him or anyone.
“I’m sorry,” Brad managed to finally say, “I can’t do this anymore. “
“Can’t do what?” Ashley didn’t understand.
“I’ve met someone,” Brad spoke very fast. “She’s a terrific woman, perfect for me, everything I’ve been looking for. It’s not fair to lead you on this way.”
Ashley felt a chill run up through her arms and shoulders.  He was breaking up with her? Right now, right here?   It didn’t make sense that everything had been great between them yesterday and now he’d suddenly met someone.
  “Why didn’t you tell me sooner,” Ashley said, in a cool, even tone, desperately trying to regain her dignity.
It wasn’t that she was in love with Brad. It was way too soon for that.  Ashley wasn’t the kind to jump into things quickly, to give her heart without being careful and taking time.  But to be broken up without seeing it coming, to be rejected on the turn of a dime. Why? It didn’t make sense.
“Can’t you be happy for me, Ashley?” Brad said falteringly.
Ashley knew that she should be happy for Brad, but she wasn’t. She felt rotten and let down.  Wasn’t she terrific too? What was wrong with her? Why wasn’t she the one he could see building a life with?  Why had the tide turned this way in her life, especially now with tomorrow being her thirtieth birthday, which only made matters worse.
“Come on,” Brad continued, trying to make light of it, “it’s not exactly a tragedy, we’ve only gone out a few times. Be happy for me!”
“Of course it’s not a tragedy and I wish I could be happy,” said Ashley lightly, as she turned away from him, and walked to the edge of the promenade to watch the sun set in the darkening sky.

Sophie Meyer has been writing for years, and has always been in love with love.
With a background in psychology, philosophy and theater, she's helped many find love, avoid detours and climb out of  inevitable pitfalls. The essence of her life and work are exploring the wonderful, spontaneous and unpredictable surprises life loves to provide. She also offers talks and workshops on finding and living a life of love.

Review Rating: 4 LIGHTNING BOLTS

Review: A bit of a lie escalates into something bigger....and has everyone wondering- just where is the groom?

Ashley is taking on something new, and instead of just being honest, she fabricates a bit of a lie about her wedding planning. Now one mishap after another, her life is spiraling out of control.  This book is filled with one crazy thing after another, and it's one heck of an enjoyable read!  Okay, we've all been caught up in a little white lie or two, right? Think about it- if those lies were stretched out a little more, how things would turn out? Yeah, disaster, right?

This is a great escape read. It's quirky, silly, but plain ould fun, and had me laughing along with shaking my head. Great job to the author on a light summer read that's sure to put a smile on reader's faces....and make you second guess telling a little white lie! 
Buy the Book!

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