on February 25, 2017
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I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
***SPECIAL RELEASE WEEK PRICE!***
From New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, Nicole Williams:
Cora Matthews grew up with the Adams’ boys, twin brothers and best friends who wouldn’t let anything come between them—except for her. One of them became her best friend; the other, her fiancé.
She always knew she’d wind up marrying one of them, and Jacob Adams is the epitome of Mister Right. At least until he fails to show up for their wedding.
As Jacob’s best man, and identical twin, Matt makes a split-second decision that will affect the three of their lives forever—he steps in to take his brother’s place. In front of the altar, exchanging vows with the woman he’s secretly been in love with for years.
But Cora finds out about the groom swap. The morning after the wedding. As if realizing she just slept with her fiancé’s brother isn’t disturbing enough, she’s forced to confront the feelings for Matt Adams she thought she’d buried years ago.
Through the course of her real honeymoon with her fake husband, she uncovers truths both Adams brothers were hoping to keep hidden, for opposite reasons. One to protect himself, the other to protect her.
She married the wrong brother, but what if he’s been the right one all along?
I have to start by saying I loved this book! The angst…sigh…it was wonderful. The whole premise was unique to me, and throughout the book, I honestly didn’t know for sure which way it would end up. I read this in one sitting, and was totally hooked from page one. Once again, Nicole Williams delivers stellar writing and a fantastic story.
I don’t want to give too much away, as this one does have a few twists. Matt and Jacob are twin brothers, with Jacob set to marry the lovely Cora. We start the book out with Matt’s POV right before the wedding is set to begin and Jacob is MIA. I loved the way the book starts out, because it immediately sucks you into the story. I wanted to know where Jacob was, and why would Matt so willingly step in for him? I wanted to know how far he would be able to take the deception before his brother showed up.
I’m an angst addict, and this one delivered in spades. So many revelations about the past, and about the role of both twins in Cora’s life, make this one hell of a roller coaster of emotions. Cora is caught in the middle and is torn between what her heart and her head are telling her. Both Matt and Jacob have lied to her, and she must figure out a way to forgive them both. The tension between these three, when Jacob finally does turn up, is off the charts.
My only complaint about the book would be that it was too short. I wanted more! That’s not to say we don’t get a complete story, we do, I just am greedy and didn’t want it to end. The ending, however, was everything I wanted it to be. If you love angst and a good love triangle, you will love this one.
So?” I crossed my arms and leaned into the banister behind me. “Did you? Like my brother?”
She sighed, turning toward the open door. “Jacob . . .”
“What? It’s a fair question.” I shoved off the banister, feeling hope and heat tangling in my veins from the look on her face, from the sound of her voice. She’d felt something for me, whether it be the most passing of crushes or something much deeper. Realizing that had me feeling drunk from something other than alcohol. “Besides, you’re stuck with me now. Won’t matter what you ’fess up to.”
Cora started through the doorway. “I don’t want to talk about it.”
Grabbing the suitcases, I followed her. I wasn’t letting this go. Never. Not if she threatened death or castration or anything else. “Why not?”
She broke to a sudden stop a few feet inside the room. “Because I don’t want to focus on the past. I want to concentrate on the future. That’s not going to work if you keep asking me questions about Matt.”
There was a sharpness in her voice—one she didn’t use too often. She didn’t want to keep talking about me, which only made me want to continue talking about me. I’d struck a nerve, but I wasn’t sure how deep that nerve went.
I needed to know how deep it went. I had to know. My whole life, I’d been under the impression that Cora saw me as nothing more than a good friend and substitute brother. She cared for me, but not in the same way I cared for her.
Or did she?
“This thing with Matt . . .”
Her back stiffened.
“Was it a thing? Like ancient history? Or is it still a thing?” I closed the door and wondered why I could feel my heartbeat in my eardrums.
She kept her back to me, standing in the middle of the dark room like a lone ship on a vast ocean. “I married you.”
Yeah, she did marry me.
“But if he’d made a play for you, way back before all of this”—I waved my finger between the two of us, not that she could see it—“would you have given him a chance?”
“He never made a play for me.” Her voice sounded faraway, like she was out of reach when she was less than an arm’s length away.
“That doesn’t answer my question.” I stepped closer. “If he had? Would you have?”
Her back was moving faster from her quickened breathing. This conversation was making her uncomfortable. Why was that?
“Stop, Jacob. Enough.” She spun on me, swaying in place just enough that I reached out to steady her. She shook my hand away like it was white-hot. “I’m not going to get into another fight with you over Matt. I’m done. I picked you. I married you. What else do I have to prove?”
“That you don’t—”
“I don’t love Matt!” Her arms flung out at her sides as her voice spilled across the room. ‘There. I said it. Are you happy now? Are you happy we’ve managed to get into another argument over this infatuation you’re convinced I have for your brother? On our wedding night of all times?” She glared at me with bleary eyes. I couldn’t tell if that was from tears or from alcohol. Maybe both.
“Cora, I’m sorry.” I ran my hands through my hair, wondering what in the hell I was doing—for the millionth time that day. Deceiving her, betraying her, and now accusing and angering her. Maybe I didn’t know the first fucking thing about love. Maybe Jacob knew more about it than I did, because I wasn’t sure love was supposed to hurt as badly as this did.
“Just . . . enough already.” As she shouldered past me, I reached for her, but she shook me off. “I need to be alone.”
She slammed the front door behind her a moment later, leaving me alone with my idiocy.
“Cora,” I called to an empty room. I wasn’t thinking when I rushed toward the door after her. “Cora!”
The moment I pulled the door open, something crashed into me. It made a sharp breath rush out of my mouth as I staggered back a few steps.
My arms barely had time to wrap around her before Cora’s mouth was on mine, moving in such a way that made staying upright next to impossible. Before I had a chance to catch up to the fact that I was kissing Cora in an entirely different way than we’d kissed at the wedding and reception, her fingers were working at my belt. Quickly.
I didn’t know she’d already gotten it undone before she’d moved on to my zipper. The sounds she was making as she kissed me, the way her body felt aligned against mine, the way her mouth knew the intricate balance of submission and domination . . . one moment at a time, Cora was crushing the last remnants of my resolve. Destroying the final pieces of my views of right and wrong.