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Book Review and New Release: Her Favorite Rival by Sarah Mayberry (Book two in the Matthews sisters series)

Title: Her Favorite Rival
Author: Sarah Mayberry
Series: Matthews sisters
Genre: contemporary romance
Published: 2013
Pages: 304
Format read: ebook
Rating: A

Her Favorite Rival is the second book in the Matthew sisters series, after the novella Her Favorite TemptationRival stands just fine on its own, if you–like me–didn’t even realize there was a story that came before it. I’ll be reading Leah’s story soon, though. Very soon.

Audrey Matthews is a workaholic. She’s never felt as if she’s measured up to her family’s expectations–she can never be as perfect as her younger sister Leah, the doctor. Instead, Audrey’s worked her way up through her company tooth and nail, determined to get to the top regardless of the obstacles. Especially one particularly annoying obstacle, Zach Black.

Zach is the company’s golden boy, seemingly perfect in every way. Does he have to be gorgeous to boot? Audrey resents his expensive clothes, car, and insufferable smugness.

Until she realizes that her preconceived notions are all wrong. Forced to work on a project together, Audrey and Zach become friends. Soon they both want more…but as rivals in a company undergoing major upheavals, can they possibly make it work without sacrificing their careers?

I love Sarah Mayberry’s characters. Somehow she always manages to make them seem so real–within the first few pages, I’m always rooting for them 100%. Her Favorite Rival is no exception. Both Audrey and Zach have some heavy-duty baggage–most of it stemming from their family relationships–and that, coupled with their single-minded devotion to their careers, makes a relationship between the two seem impossible.

Except that their chemistry together makes not having a relationship inconceivable.

Mayberry did a fantastic job bringing these two characters together. Even when all seemed lost, she made me believe in their path to an eventual HEA. There weren’t any easy fixes, but she did manage to bring Audrey and Zach together at last in a realistic  and satisfying way.

Her Favorite Rival easily made Mayberry’s books into auto-buys for me. She hasn’t disappointed me yet!

I received an ARC through NetGalley in exchange for an honest opinion. Now, excuse me while I go pick up a copy of Leah’s book…thank goodness for the magic of the one-click!


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