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Thursday, December 5, 2019

Gilded Lily (Bennet Brothers #2) by Staci Hart

 A Review by Wendy
5 Authentically Lovely Stars
* * * * * 
Spoiler Free

Staci Hart...
How do I love thee? Let me count the ways...
You have created this series that has taken me from my everyday life and given me a place to revel in...You have given me a family to root for and think about...Parents who did their best during trying times and sons and daughters who rallied around to resurrect the family business against all odds.

And most importantly, you have given me love stories that are simple but also complex...where each character had real understandable reasons for their shortcomings and when they finally understand the "Big Picture", they take action.

Which brings me to Gilded Lily...OMG, this is a true gem.

At first glance, it is the opposite attraction theme. Lila is an A-Type personality to the extreme that is perfect for her profession as a wedding planner.
Lila has been working all her life to become The Wedding Planner. She worked her way up from the lowest of low during a stint in Los Angeles and then because of her serious success in climbing up the ladder out there, she was able to land her position at the only company she wished to join in New York City.

Lila was on track but there was only one obstacle that made her life miserable, her immediate boss. The owner of the company seemed happy with her but the immediate boss delighted constantly in making Lila's life difficult. She would change the timetable of events to throw Lila, she would micromanage events Lila devoted all her talent to only to take credit for them, and she would do anything she could to break the steel professional calm Lila presented at all times.

Because Lila would not allow anything or anyone break her. She had her goal firmly in place, her eye on the prize and this witch of a woman was not going to stop her from doing what she loved.

She was not about to let the other road bump in her life destroy her goal either...After all, finding your perfect long-time boyfriend bonking the reality star sister of the wedding you are planning was NOT going to kill her determination of making this Reality TV event the best she had ever done.

Lila goes to her sister, Ivy, who is part of the flower shop she is using for the event. Sympathetic and understanding, Ivy listens and hears all Lila has to say...and shares how this ex never met the needs Lila had. That this ex may have been picture-perfect but was far from it in reality. Ivy shares with Lila that in order to get over somebody is to get under somebody new...

Kash Bennet's life has always revolved around the family's business. He was the one who followed in his father's footsteps growing and nursing all the blooms of Longbourne. Working the soil, planting and growing beauty made him appreciate more than most.

He also had a life-changing lesson early on as a young man...He fell hard during high school for a girl from a well to do family. They were The Couple and he planned on visiting her at her college on the weekends, continuing the love. Little did he know, that was not her plan, teaching him a very important lesson...Society girls liked to play with him but didn't want to stay with him.

Fine, he would be the good time guy and never ever get involved. So when Lila, who pushed every button he had, seems to need some getting over her ex...he is fine with helping her out.

Kash told himself he would be strong enough not to let his secret feelings for her surface, his delight in her feisty nature and perfect grooming. He will be the man she needs until she doesn't...

OMFG! This book is so good. The chemistry, the smarts, the care, the feels...all of it worked so well for me. I loved every minute of reading this. What made this wonderful was all of the surrounding parts of this love story. There was the continuing family dynamics of the Bennets and their business situations, there were the continuing insights to the other siblings giving us major hints of other stories to come. All of these elements added to the beauty of this couple. Everything fit.

So Staci Hart, how do I love you...Continually and thank you for this amazing series.

A gifted copy was provided by author/publisher for an honest review.

Staci has been a lot of things up to this point in her life: a graphic designer, an entrepreneur, a seamstress, a clothing and handbag designer, a waitress. Can’t forget that. She’s also been a mom to three little girls who are sure to grow up to break a number of hearts. She’s been a wife, even though she’s certainly not the cleanest or the best cook. She’s also super, duper fun at a party, especially if she’s been drinking whiskey, and her favorite word starts with f, ends with k.

From roots in Houston, to a seven-year stint in Southern California, Staci, and her family ended up settling somewhere in between and equally north in Denver, until they grew a wild hair and moved to Holland. It’s the perfect place to overdose on cheese and ride bicycles, especially along the canals, and especially in summertime. When she’s not writing, she’s reading, gaming, or designing graphics.

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