Review: A June Bride by Marybeth Whalen

It takes a reality TV show for Wynne to realize love isn’t just a game.

Wynne Hardy never thought she’d get engaged on a reality TV show, but when she met Andy on The Rejection Connection, the two of them hit it off. Now he’s asked her to marry him, much to the public’s delight and fascination. They’re all set to wed on live TV in a seaside ceremony at the height of the wedding season.

But just as Wynne thinks all her dreams are coming true, her ex-boyfriend walks back into her life at the worst possible time. Callum broke her heart years ago, and she’s still sorting through her feelings for him. Her heart isn’t as clear as her head that it’s past time to move on—even though she’s engaged to Andy.

Will Wynne go through with her televised wedding and be the perfect June bride the network is looking for?

a-june-bride

From the outset of the novella where Wynne is being interviewed on television, I was intrigued by the reality show concept which raised the possibility as to whether each character were who they appeared to be on screen or were putting on an act for the audience. Unfortunately the story really didn’t live up to the potential of its premise.

Whilst Wynne is clearly holding back and playing the ‘perfect part’ for the cameras, she remains one-dimensional as a character even during private moments of the novel. The story is told in the third person, and this combined with the fact that the nature of her thoughts was both repetitive and superficial, without really delving into her emotions adequately, makes it hard to warm to her. I found it equally difficult to invest in any of the other characters. Andy could have added spice to the story by either being wildly in love with Wynne, or being indifferent but playing his part for a brief shot at fame, but instead he’s rather lacklustre and barely features at all. Equally Callum is so briefly featured that it’s difficult to engage with him, and I found myself unable to care whether she ended up with either one of them.

Meredith, a fellow reality TV star, does add some interest by being a rather contradictory and larger-than-life character, but this really only highlights the potential that failed to be realised with the rest of the cast. The reality tv setting was ultimately far more interesting than either side of the love-triangle, which considering this is billed as a romance meant, for me, that it was rather wide of the mark.

Disclaimer: I was provided with an eARC by NetGalley but all opinions given are, as always, entirely my own
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