book, Book Review

Picture Perfect Love by Melissa McClone

About the Book:Book - Picture Perfect Love
Author: Melissa McClone
Publisher: Zondervan
Source: Litfuse Publicity
Publication Date: 2015
Find the Review elsewhere:
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Find the Book Elsewhere:
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Series: Year of Weddings 2, 7
Genre: Fiction; Contemporary Novella
Rating: 3.5 out of 5

Synopsis: When image becomes everything, it’s up to love to refocus the heart.
Photographer Jenna Harrison wants every bride and groom to look picture perfect on their special day, putting her heart into every wedding to give the couple memorable images of their love. But her own heart is still broken, the unworn wedding dress hanging in her closet a reminder that relationships aren’t always as perfect as they look through her camera lens. But Jenna has faith that she will find true love. Until then, she must be patient and trust in God’s plan and His perfect timing.

Attorney Ashton Vance is the one that got away. When an embarrassing Photoshopped picture of put an end to his political aspirations, he blamed Jenna. So what if the photo led to his being offered a dream job and changing his life for the better? Jenna betrayed his trust, and two years later, Ashton’s heart still hasn’t recovered.

It was me. His younger sister’s three words turn Ashton’s world upside down. He must ask Jenna’s forgiveness, but can he risk his heart a second time? Even if Jenna can forgive him, dare he hope for a second chance at her love? – Goodreads 

REVIEW: Novellas are a tough task to get right speaking only from a reader’s perspective. It almost never works to have the couple go through the motions of a meet-cute, family shenanigans plus create the right mood for falling in love. This is why in order to work, nearly all novellas need to have an already established backstory that took place “off-screen,” otherwise the story is a tough sell. This sweet little novella was the first I’d read from the author (an author who mainly writes in the mainstream market) and also the only story I’ve read in Zondervan’s “Year of Weddings” collections (this book being in the second such series).

Our two characters, Jenna and Ashton, are a nice couple to hang out with for the 112 or so pages their story takes place in. First, I love their names, partially because they are unusual, and secondly, they’re interesting characters because their personalities aren’t as outgoing as other books. The latter is likely stinted or suffers reserved personalities because of the length. But for the story, I think this restraint is appropriate and perhaps even needed. Jenna’s voice is perhaps the strongest because we sympathize with her the most. Or I did. Much as I liked Ash, his inability to trust (again) is one quality he will clearly have to work on turning into something positive or else he and Jenna might not find that happy ending.

Fans of this novella collection will delight in yet another sweet addition to the series. There is some unique background to this relationship, and if I’m being honest, one that could have made a fabulous full-length novel. Between Ashton’s apparent incapability to trust the woman he loves, his sister and father (jerk alert!), Jenna’s business and their history, this had the makings of something beautiful. Something that would have been lovely to experience fuller. I loved the photography angles and the opportunity to read a fresh voice in contemporary fiction. Picture Perfect Love is exactly as it sounds. A darling wedding story that deals in emotional disturbances of the past, ending in such a way that promises a brighter future.

Read what other reviewers say about Picture Perfect Love.

Sincere thanks to Litfuse for providing a complimentary copy of this book for reviewing purposes.

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