Author: Brandon Witt
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Rating: 4 stars
Received from Publisher
Blurb: Kevin Bivanti’s dream is to open a wedding dress shop, a place with the stunning gowns to make every bride-to-be feel adored. At thirty-eight, he quits a successful advertising career to buy an old brownstone in a trendy Boston neighborhood and to make his dream a reality. When one of his cosigners drops out, fate intervenes, ushering in Casper James, who hopes to open his own bakery. With Casper willing to take the risk, their ambitions meld into a wedding dress and wedding cake boutique.
Extensive renovations to the brownstone, an affair with his ex-husband, family drama with his mothers, and the anxiety of significant life changes push Kevin to the brink of a nervous breakdown. In the midst of stress and uncertainty, Casper becomes more than a business partner, a mutual attraction that adds another layer of intensity and risk.
With their dreams on the verge of reality, Kevin and Casper must find the courage to face the stress of managing their attraction, the gamble of a new business venture, and the resurgence of Kevin’s personal demons.
Review: This book was a sweet romance revolving around some very heavy and heartbreaking subject matter. I think that helped balance out this book for me. Sweet really isn’t my thing! The main character Kevin has been struggling with control and body issues since his freshman year in High School. In this book he’s grown and become a functioning adult that has hidden his secret from everyone in is life until he meets and spends time with Casper.
Casper is a chef but his passion is baking. Specifically cakes. He’s saving an inheritance for a chance to start his own business. A chance meeting hooks him up with Kevin. Kevin plans on buying a brownstone in Boston to open a wedding dress store. When Kevin needs a last minute investor Kevin jumps at the chance. Together Casper and Kevin take on the adventure of turning a very expensive run down 3 level brownstone into a Bridal dress and wedding cake business together.
Kevin has become so good at managing his weight through his anorexia and bulimia that nobody knows his dirty little secret. He’s got all the symptoms covered with seemingly valid excuses. He works out way too much and eats way too little. Deflects attention if somebody pays too much attention to him not eating. He also has anxiety issues. You can’t help but feel awful for him. It’s actually quite fascinating in a twisted way that he became so good at hiding it. I think that just added to the effect the story had on me. There’s also the bonus complication of the ex and the closure they both so obviously needed.
Casper was so so sweet. Though the store began as Kevin’s dream it was also his dream. He jumped all in. Most people would worry about starting a business with a virtual stranger who pops pills all day but Casper doesn’t judge. He believes in fate and just knows it’ll all work out. He also knows he shouldn’t give into his attraction and growing feelings about his new business partner but he can’t help himself. I couldn’t help but admire how brave and sure Casper was. Casper was always there when Kevin needed him, too.
Kevin’s family is big and hilarious. He had such an amazing support system. To me this just brought home the point that even people who look like they have it all together on the outside can be struggling on the inside. People need to remember we all have our own struggles and not everyone wants them known. Kevin’s character is based off one of the author’s real life friends. Just having a face to attach all that pain to makes my heart hurt that much more for him. One of my favorite parts of the story was how Casper calmed Kevin’s worries. He didn’t have to be perfect or successful for Casper to love him. He just had to be him. Flaws and all. They really were perfect for each other. This doesn’t mean their lives will be easy but they’ll always have each other. And the romantic in me loved that.