Kennedy grew silent again. She began chewing her bottom lip. His eyes automatically dropped to her mouth, and for the forty-eighth time since being trapped together, he thought about kissing some sense into that anxious brain of hers.
“You’re right.” Her words were so soft, he wasn’t sure she’d spoken them. “He’s wonderful. Really awesome. But honestly…” She gave him a sharp if slightly tipsy look. “I’ve never said this to anyone, so you can’t tell a soul.”
He gave her a droll look. “Who am I going to tell?”
She stared him down for several seconds as if judging his sincerity. “Cross your heart?”
“Cross my heart,” he repeated, making the motion against his chest.
“Okay.” She bit her lip. “It’s just that…sometimes I doubt we’re meant for each other.”
“Yes. I know it’s crazy,” she murmured. “Especially since I can’t afford for my software to be wrong.”
Before he could respond, the lights overhead flickered. Her head whipped up toward the ceiling. “Thank God!” The elated expression on her face reminded him of a child watching fireworks go off. “We’re finally going to get out of here,” she squealed.
“Yeah…awesome.” Matt swallowed hard. He should be happy, too. Why the hell wasn’t he happy? He’d finally be out of this cramped elevator and away from this anxiety-ridden woman with her boyfriend issues. But instead, all he could do was bank down a strange sense of disappointment at the thought of her walking through those elevator doors and him never seeing her again.
He stood first then held out his hand to help her up. Her palm met his, and he tugged just as the elevator began to move again, causing them to lose their balance. His back slammed against the wall, and she fell into his arms.
“Nice catch,” she said with a laugh, obviously still feeling the effects of the champagne.
Matt held on to her, his heart beating wildly. Having her in his arms ignited all kinds of thoughts, all kinds of feelings. Naughty thoughts. Good feelings. His gaze captured hers for a long moment until eventually her smiling face grew serious, too. Then his conscience tapped him on the shoulder.
What the hell do you think you’re doing? it said. You’ve both been drinking. And she has a boyfriend.
He’d always hated his conscience.
Matt didn’t move. The elevator was going to open soon. They would be free to leave separately or leave together. There was still a choice. Growing up, he had always been the one to toe the line. Do what was right for everyone else in his life. But so help him, he didn’t want to do that this time. Maybe it was the alcohol, but he wanted her. True, the woman had a boyfriend—a neglectful boyfriend—but still, there were rules for that sort of thing, weren’t there? Like what if…
He kissed her.
I loved Kennedy and Matt’s story. From their meet-cute in the elevator (can a scene with hyperventilation and panic attacks be cute? You betcha!) to their should-have-sprung-for-the-more-expensive-string-lights final scene, these two livened up every page they were on together. Justin (the “right” brother), on the other hand, was practically a no-show for the entire book, so it was almost too easy to write him off as a potential hero. (Though if Ms. Shirk wants to write him his own HEA, she won’t get an argument from me!)
You do have to seriously wonder about Kennedy’s super-accurate matchmaking software if it matched up Kennedy and Justin, though. What was it thinking? Unless that was its super-roundabout way of bringing Kennedy and Matt together, since he wasn’t registered with the company and his brother was–in which case, it’s brilliant! 😉 Either way, it was nearly impossible not to root for the two of them, even though Kennedy’s business’s future was on the line. Fortunately that manages to be resolved in a believable way, so we can have our fruitcake and eat it too (though do we really want to? Because, I mean, fruitcake…sorry, Matt and Justin’s mom!)
Wrong Brother, Right Matchis the third book in the Anyone But You series, but it would work just fine as a standalone. Both of the other series’ couples make appearances here, but if you haven’t had a chance to read their books yet, you’ll still do just fine.
Rating: 4 stars / B+
I voluntarily reviewed an Advanced Reader Copy of this book.
Jennifer Shirk has a bachelor degree in pharmacy-which has in NO
WAY at all helped her with her writing career. But she likes to point it out,
since it shows romantic-at-hearts come in all shapes, sizes, and mind-numbing educations.
She writes sweet (and sometimes even funny) romances for Samhain Publishing, Avalon Books/Montlake Romance and now Entangled Publishing. She won third place in the RWA 2006 NYC’s Kathryn Hayes Love and Laughter Contest with her first book, THE ROLE OF A LIFETIME. Recently, her novel SUNNY DAYS FOR SAM won the 2013 Golden Quill Published Authors Contest for Best Traditional Romance.
Lately she’s been on a serious exercise kick. But don’t hold that against her.