Something New: Tales From a Makeshift Bride

Something New: Tales From a Makeshift Bride by Lucy Knisley is a funny and interesting biographical graphic novel about Lucy’s relationship with her boyfriend, John, and their wedding. This book takes you through how they met in college, moved in together, broke up, dated other people for three years, then abruptly became engaged.

Then, it takes you through a year of a DIY wedding. DIY: decorations (ALL the decorations), music playlist, ties for the men in the wedding party, photo booth, personalized gifts for every single guest, personalized gifts for everyone in the wedding party, and the list goes on. What they could not do themselves they worked out as cheaply as possible: a wedding dress that was on sale (it had pockets!), a backyard barn built for the occasion, and a friend of the family to cater everything.

There is also plenty of wedding stress. Lucy’s mother had her own list of guests to invite that mostly consisted of people who were strangers to Lucy and John, and it was longer than Lucy and John’s list of guests. The mother-of-the-bride also kept insisting on other things such as hiring a wedding planner without consulting the bride and groom, changing the size of the intended barn which forced the couple to remove guests from their invitation list, a band instead of their DIY playlist, and her badly-behaved dog walking down the aisle at the wedding. As Lucy and John worked through all of this stress, Lucy also reflected on what weddings used to be, what they have become, what marrying a man means for her bisexuality, and what she wants most in a marriage.

Genre: Non-fiction graphic novel

Setting: Most of the story takes place in modern-day Chicago and New York state.

Number of pages: 291

Is this good for a book club? Yes, if the club is willing to read a graphic novel. This book contains a lot of good discussion material about an important cultural milestone. It is also very quick to read, despite the number of pages.

Themes: The history of weddings, the modern wedding industry’s influence on what people think weddings are supposed to be (and what they are supposed to cost), how weddings can negatively impact people who are not heterosexual, what it means to have a good marriage, different types of relationships, and how wedding stress can bring out the worst in people.

Objectionable content: Suggestive themes, sexuality, and alcohol.

Can children read this? Teenagers would enjoy this.

Who would like this? Anyone who is preparing for their own wedding, preparing for someone else’s wedding, has gone through a wedding, thinks weddings are overrated, thinks weddings are wonderful, or enjoys examining the wedding industry.

Rating: Five stars



A Sexy New Romance Series


Looking for a sexy, romantic comedy to read?  USA TODAY bestselling author Lauren Layne,  the “queen of witty dialogue and sexy scenes”, has written a new series, The Wedding Belles, about three ambitious wedding planners in New York City.  Picture Sex and the City meets The Wedding Planner and you’ll come up with a sweet, charming, and entertaining story. 

Despite taking place in glamorous New York City,  readers from all parts of the country can relate to the characters in their common struggles to succeed in their work life and personal life.  The author captures everyday feelings and situations with exquisite writing filled with passion and humor.  Add to this, beautiful setting descriptions and very likeable secondary characters and you’ll come away with a very enjoyable, fun, and sexy read.

to-have-and-to-holdThe first book in the series is To Have and To HoldDiscovering her fiancé is an international con man just moments before they exchange vows devastates celebrity wedding planner Brooke Baldwin.   Now a pariah in Los Angeles, she seeks a fresh start in New York City and thinks she’s found it with her first bridal client, a sweet—if slightly spoiled—hotel heiress. Then she meets the uptight businessman who’s holding the purse strings.

Seth Tyler wishes he could write a blank check and be done with his sister Maya’s fancy-pants wedding. Unfortunately, micromanaging the event is his only chance at proving Maya’s fiancé is a liar. Standing directly in his way is the stunning blonde wedding planner whose practiced smiles and sassy comebacks both irritate and arouse him. He needs Brooke’s help. But can he persuade a wedding planner on a comeback mission to unplan a wedding? And more importantly, how will he convince her that the wedding she should be planning…is theirs?

for-betterSecond in the series is For Better or Worse.   When small-town girl Heather Fowler finally gets promoted from assistant to actual wedding planner, she’s determined to make it as one of Manhattan’s elite Wedding Belles. Unfortunately, her first client demands an opulent black-tie affair at the Plaza…in five months’ time. Heather’s days quickly become a flurry of cake tastings, dress-fittings, RSVP cards, and bridal tantrums. But what she’s really losing sleep over is the live music blaring from her playboy neighbor’s apartment all night.

Five years ago, Josh Tanner was an up-and-comer on Wall Street, complete with the penthouse and the migraines. But a grim cancer diagnosis made him realize there is more to life than the corner office. If only he could convince his pretty, workaholic neighbor to let loose, too. As Heather lets down her guard, Josh is surprised when he starts falling for the sweet, vulnerable woman hiding beneath those power suits. Soon, it’s Heather’s turn to convince Josh to take the biggest risk of all: love.

to-loveBook three is To Love and To Cherish.    Alexis Morgan has spent the past eight years devoted to turning her tiny start-up into Manhattan’s premiere wedding planning company, The Wedding Belles. Now that her business is thriving, it’s time to turn towards her much neglected personal life, and Alexis approaches her relationships like she does everything else: with a plan. Not a part of that plan is Logan Harris, the silent partner in the Belles, and the one person who’s been there for her since the very beginning. But Alexis needs someone fun, and Logan’s all business, all the time—except when a late night at the office ends with an unexpected kiss that leaves the usually cool and together Alexis reeling.

Author Lauren Layne –


A former e-commerce and web marketing manager from Seattle, Lauren relocated to New York City in 2011, where she ditched the corporate world to pursue a full-time writing career.

Hobbies include cocktail hour, a designer purse addiction, and dry rosé.

She lives in midtown Manhattan with her high-school sweetheart, where she writes smart romantic comedies with just enough sexy-times to make your mother blush. In LL’s ideal world, every stiletto-wearing, Kate Spade wielding woman would carry a Kindle stocked with Lauren Layne books.

Here Comes The Bride


When you think of February, you think Valentine’s Day.  So it’s no surprise that February is National Weddings Month.  More couples get engaged this month than any other and while it’s not a popular month for actual weddings, it is the month when all the planning starts.

Some fun facts:

  1.  Average engagement lasts 16 months.
  2.   Average engagement ring costs $4,411.
  3.   Average age of couple – Bride, 27     Groom, 29
  4.   Most popular months to marry are (in order) June, August, September, October, May.
  5.   Average number of guests at a wedding – 175.
  6.    Average cost of wedding – $26,000.

If you’re planning a wedding – (or are hoping to get engaged this month!) – the Cheshire Library has a wonderful section of books to help you plan.

A sampling:

Stylish Weddings: 50 simple ideas to make from top designers

Style me pretty wedding: inspiration & ideas for an unforgettable celebration

Do it for less! Weddings: how to create your dream wedding without breaking the bank

The Knot guide to destination weddings

The Knot complete guide to weddings in the real world

The Knot book of wedding flowers

Simple stunning weddings

Handcrafted weddings: over 100 projects & ideas for personalizing your wedding

Simple Stunning Wedding Flowers

The Best Wedding Reception Ever!

For additional books, click here.

And if you just want to snuggle on the couch with your favorite beverage and just read about weddings, here are a few fiction titles for you to enjoy.

Four Weddings and a Fireman – Jennifer Bernard – Firefighter Derek “Vader” Brown is determined to get to the bottom of Cherie Harper’s ambivalence toward him, while Cherie fights to keep a nightmare from the past from interfering with her passion for Derek.

Beautiful Day – Elin Hilderbrand – Gathering on Nantucket for a wedding planned to the letter by the bride’s late mother, the Carmichaels and the Grahams hide their scandal-ridden, crumbling lives from the blissfully unaware happy couple.

The Christmas Wedding – James Patterson – Relates the story of Gaby Summerhill, a widow planning a holiday wedding to a groom whose identity remains a surprise to her four children.

Vision in White – Nora Roberts – Wedding photographer Mackensie “Mac” Elliot falls into the arms of safe, stable English teacher Carter Maguire as relief from the onslaught of bridezillas, but soon begins to wonder if what began as a casual fling could blossom into her own happy ending.

A Wedding in December – Anita Shreve – Gathering to attend a wedding in the Berkshire Mountains of Massachusetts, seven former classmates find the reunion marked by the death of a spouse, a traumatic past event, a shocking secret, and health issues.

A Common Life: the wedding story – Jan Karon – The creator of the Mitford stories goes back through time to relate the wedding of Father Tim Kavanagh to Cynthia Coppersmith.

Late for the Wedding – Amanda Quick – Regency sleuths Lavinia Lake and Tobias March stumble into the middle of a deadly mystery as they become caught up in the search for a killer who targets wealthy older men on the brink of marrying beautiful, much younger women.

The Wedding Quilt – Jennifer Chiaverini – Meditating on the weddings she has attended in Elm Creek Manor throughout the years on the morning of her daughter’s wedding day, Sarah McClure evaluates the symbolic features on a wedding quilt designed to display the signatures of beloved guests.

Or how about enjoying a wedding movie?  Check out these titles:

My Big Fat Greek Wedding  – A young Greek-American woman, changes her life for the better and falls in love with a non-Greek man; now that she has found happiness, she must learn to come terms with her heritage while attempting to get her family to accept her new love.

Rachel Getting Married – A young woman who has been in and out of rehab for years returns home for her sister’s wedding.

Made of HonorTom and Hannah have been best friends since college, but when Hannah returns from a trip engaged to another man, Tom realizes he is in love with her and will do everything he can to win her heart.

The Hangover – Doug and his groomsmen head to Vegas for his bachelor party, but when they wake up the next morning with the worst hangovers they have ever had, they realize Doug is missing and no one can recall the events of the past twelve hours.

The Wedding Planner When a wedding planner falls in love with one of her biggest clients, she must decide whether to plan his wedding, or steal his heart.

Rumor Has It – Upon returning home for her sister’s wedding, Sarah Huttinger discovers that her family may have been the inspiration for the novel behind the classic movie “The Graduate”.

Monsoon Wedding – Love, lust and hope envelop an upper middle-class Indian family and their world-wide guests as they celebrate for four days the arranged marriage of their daughter to an East Indian man from Texas.

The Wedding Date – Unable to deal with having been dumped by the best man at her sister’s future wedding, a young woman hires an escort to act as her boyfriend at the event.

About SchmidtWarren Schmidt copes with the boredom of retirement, the devastating loss of his wife, and his daughter’s new fiancee.

Happy planning!  Happy reading!  Happy watching!





BOOK REVIEW: Once Tempted by Laura Moore

This is book one of the new series Silver Creek.  We are introduced to the Knowles family who own and operate the Silver Creek Ranch in California.  Not only is this a working ranch with cattle, goats, and sheep, it is also a first class resort.  This book centers on Ward Knowles, the oldest son of three children.  He was once engaged to a woman who turned out to be a gold digger, so he is not at all looking for romance.  He is dedicated to making the Silver Creek Ranch the best ranch and resort it can be.

Tess Casari is a born and bred New Yorker and Events Planner.  She endured a horrific marriage, then stood by her ex-husband while he died from a brain tumor.  Wanting to totally escape and start over, she and her friend come up with a unique idea that lands Tess in Acacia, California – home to Silver Creek Ranch.  She finds sanctuary there as an assistant to Ward’s mother, Adele.

Ward and Tess are like water and oil and, at first, think the sparks between them are because they dislike each other so much.  But as time goes on, they begin to realize there is something more and decide to have a no strings, no expectations relationship.  It was fun to watch Ward and Tess navigate through their relationship.  The author was also very adept at working their pasts into the storyline.

The pace of the book is a little slow.  A lot of time is spent on the scenery and ranch life.  But this sets up a beautifully written book.  The story is compelling and there are a whole host of secondary characters that provide depth and interest.  I can’t wait to see what happens next at Silver Creek Ranch!