Rating: 4.75 stars
Buy Link: Amazon | All Romance
I love JJ’s Throwback Thursday feature. There are so many amazing books out there that are forgotten because of the greatness of the ones published recently. I’m excited to go back and read the books that helped me fall in love with this genre, and the ones that are buried in my TBR pile. When I was asked what books I’d like to review for Throwback Thrusday, I presented a list and on the top of that list was Timing by Mary Calmes. If you’ve ever read Mary Calmes, you’ll probably agree that her books are timeless. Whether it’s a book written four years ago, like this one, or her latest release, they are pretty much all on the re-read list. So it was a given, to me at least, that I would ask to review this story.
When Stefan Joss’s best friend, Charlotte, gets married, Stefan is named the man-of-honor. And he loves it, almost as much as he loves Charlotte. Enough to travel to Texas to stand by her side as she marries the man of her dreams. Especially since Charlotte has sworn to Stefan that her brother, Rand, will not be there. But she lied. Rand has hated Stefan since the first moment they met, and the feeling is mutual. But when they call a truce for Charlotte’s wedding, the truth comes out.
Stefan is confused by the attention Rand is giving him and even more confused because he likes it. When Rand opens up and tells Stefan how he really feels, Stefan is surprised at the extent of his own feelings for Rand. But a big obstacle stands in their way: Stefan lives in Chicago and Rand will always live at the family ranch in Texas. And none of that will matter if Stefan can’t stay alive.
Before he left Chicago, Stefan’s boss asked him to make a side trip to talk a little old lady into selling her ranch, but the series of events that follows convinces Stefan and Rand that there is more to the deal than the trading of land, and the threat to Stefan’s life is far from over.
Timing is one of my favorite Mary Calmes novels. Not only do we meet one of her strong-willed, snarky characters in Stefan, we also get the quiet sexiness of a real-life cowboy in Rand Holloway. And I’m telling you guys, the chemistry between these two is off the charts. I really like that it’s not easy between them in the beginning, and that the reason it’s not easy is of their own making. Rand and Stefan have long been one of my favorite couples and they will remain so because they are so perfectly matched.
There are several parts to this story so I’m going to break this review up into those sections, mostly so I can stay organized.
First, the wedding: The entire reason Stefan is confronted with Rand, the man he thought to be his mortal enemy, is because his best friend is getting married. This wedding, at least the pre-wedding activities, are epic. To the naked eye, the events seem to be normal, but add in alcohol, rednecks, and attempted murder and you have misprinted programs, drunken croquet, black eyes, almost getting hit by a truck, and seemingly straight guys feeling you up. Really, it’s the pre-wedding of the century. And then the actual wedding has its drama—secrets of the bride, self-loathing of the man-of-honor, and a running start on the wedding march. I loved it. I love the ambiance this wedding gave to the overall story. It sets the tone for the story—fun, quirky, and exciting.
Next, the ranch: The Holloway family ranch is a place of peace and comfort that is invaded by Stefan and the rest of the wedding party. This is where we see the development of the relationship between Stefan and Rand. I love this part of this book. It’s the meat, where the real depth is formed between Stefan and Rand. It’s also where Stefan realizes he’s part of something bigger than he imagined—a family.
And finally, the deal: Now, if you’ve read this book, you know what happens with Stefan’s job and this deal. It’s unexpected. It’s a source of mystery and intrigue throughout the story since the book both begins and ends with the events of this maybe sale. I love how Calmes incorporated such a captivating mystery amongst such a lovely romance. And it is just that. The thing about the mystery of this deal is that it kind of jumps out of nowhere. You don’t really expect it till it’s there. And then you remember that this author is an expert in mystery and mayhem, which is exactly what we find in this story.
I love this book, and these guys, from beginning to end. It’s a sweet love story and engrossing mystery, with a big side of humor. If you’ve read it before, read it again. And if you’ve never read Timing, now is definitely the time.