FICTION

The Second Chance Boutique

Sourcebooks Landmark. May 2020. 288p. ISBN 9781728213682. pap. $16.99. F
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DEBUT In this debut novel by V&A Museum wedding dress archivist Leaman, Francesca Delaney owns a special wedding-dress shop. Here there are no mass-made wedding dresses, no pushy salespersons, and no pressure to buy a gown that isn’t absolutely perfect for the bride. The dresses are curated vintage, each with its own happy bride in its past. Fran takes the time to research each dress to know its story, and her shop abides by simple rules, including “never sell a dead dress”—a dress with an unhappy wedding in its past. Searching for new stock, she attends an estate sale, finding both a fantastic dress and an intriguing man. Rafael Colt, whose mother was the original bride, is the heir to the Colt Foundation, which awards vast amounts of money to charity. He’s not so sure that the found dress has a happy past.
VERDICT Fran and Rafe are the unfortunate couple who equate fights that begin over absolutely nothing with passion in their relationship, which could be off-putting for readers. Still, those who fantasize about that perfect wedding dress and wouldn’t miss an episode of Say Yes to the Dress will enjoy.

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