Hot & Hillarious
Phillips' series set in Chicago around the fictional football team "Chicago Stars" has another installment. This time, Molly Tucker's best friend Annabelle Granger takes center stage. The "ne'er do well" sister in a household of over-achievers, Annabelle takes over her nanna's matchmaking business, and home, when her grandmother dies. Her entire family (surgeons, VPs, finance heads, etc.) want her to go into accounting. They're tired of her wayward ways. But renaming Marriages by Myrna to Perfect for You, Annabelle is determined to be successful. Molly's husband, Star's QB Kevin Tucker, convinces his agent, high powered, over achieving, workaholic Heath Champion, to give Annabelle's business a try. Heath is on a schedule and feels he should be married by the time he's 35. He has a long list of what he wants and has already contracted with Power Matches (run by aggressive, Type A Portia Powers) to find him his ideal woman who's polished, educated, socially connected etc. Heath needs this type of woman to further his career and to also further distance himself from the trailer park life and alcoholic father he's left behind. Annabelle, however, is far from polished, poised, or even together. She's flighty, funny, and a little nutty. Somehow she convinces him to take on a second contract leading to some rather competitive and funny situations with her and Portia. The B story involves Heath's best friend, former football player, and partner Bodie who is the antithesis of Portia's lifestyle. He's tattooed, with a shaved head and BIG and SCARY. So naturally, Bodie's a softie and falls for Portia while never letting her see how much she scares him! Naturally, Portia fixes Heath up with women he wants and Annabelle (dubbed Tinkerbell by Heath) fixes him up with women he needs. And predictably, Annabelle's charms start to work on Heath who nevertheless refuses to be steered off mission. She is hilarious, he's funny, and the book had me gasping and laughing. That said, as romance books go for Phillips, it was also hotter than her other work and surprisingly, the heat comes from Bodie and Portia more than Heath and Annabelle.
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