The (Secret) Baby – ARC Review

43325469The (Secret) Baby
by Leddy Harper
Release Date:  July 9, 2019
Publisher:  Montlake Romance
Number of pages:  283
Kindle Edition
Source: ARC from Net Galley
Contemporary Romance M/F
Rating: R
Read 6/21/19 to 6/22/19


Maid of honor Kelsey Peterson is disappointed when the bride-to-be bails on her bachelorette party—especially since Kelsey’s already ordered the stripper. Desperate for a break from her romantic woes, Kelsey goes through with the party. After all, why let a good stripper go to waste?

Dr. Aaron Baucus is definitely not a stripper. He’s a legit doctor with a PhD in neuropsychology. But when his friend calls him over to a bar to meet a bunch of tipsy, flirtatious bridesmaids, they assume otherwise. After all, their stripper was supposed to be dressed like a doctor. Aaron isn’t much for pretending, but with Kelsey, he’s willing to be whatever she wants him to be. At least for one night.

But fate has a wicked sense of humor: Aaron and Kelsey are the maid of honor and best man at the same wedding. And after their one-night stand, Kelsey’s pregnant, but she doesn’t know how to tell him. Aaron wants to start a relationship, but he doesn’t think Kelsey wants something long term. Can their fragile romance survive all the half truths and secrecy?

I had a lot of ups and downs with this book.  And, to be quite honest, the downs were nothing terrible.  But they were enough to annoy me and not fully immerse myself in this story.  It also, at times, seemed like it was part of a series.  It was nothing so much that it was holding me back from the story of Kelsey and Aaron. But I felt as if I was supposed to know more about Kelsey’s family and friends than I got from this story.  Like maybe there was a book about Jason and Tatum that came before this one??? (edited to add: I was able to find a book titled The (Half) Truth by this author that is about Tatum and Jason. These books are not listed as being part of a series at this time, but it’s obvious it’s the story I was wondering about missing.)

I really love the concept of this story. The fake (accidental) stripper one-night stand that ends up being best friends with your cousin, that’s a fun idea.  Throw in a surprise pregnancy and roommate situation and it’s a great set up for a lot of antics.

Kelsey and Aaron are really sweet together, even when they first meet and decide to hook up.  They decide on this one-night stand not out of overwhelming libido, but because they are both lonely and misunderstood people.  It’s actually quite touching.  That sweet connection ends up carrying through to their relationship later when they become roommates.  I can’t say they have the best chemistry, because it was hit or miss throughout the story.  But there were definitely times the chemistry was there and I felt their connection through most of the story.

Kelsey has a great relationship with her best-friend, Tatum…who also happens to be marrying Kelsey’s cousin Jason.  Yet I felt as though the author was force feeding me the friendship instead of just letting it speak for itself.  She was already showing me these two are great friends, she didn’t have to keep telling me over and over.  Instead of me feeling a stronger connection to the characters, I was getting annoyed and felt the story was getting too wordy.  The overabundance of words was evident in other scenarios in this book, but mostly when it came to Kelsey and Tatum.

I definitely open to trying more by this author so I can get a true feel for her writing and whether or not it’s for me.  Like I said, this story had a fun concept and some really sweet and touching moments.  It just got bogged down in places.

3 stars

** I received an ARC of this book courtesy of the Net Galley and the publisher.  All opinions expressed in my review are my own and given freely. **

About Cheri

I'm the mom of two boys and wife to my high school sweetheart. Our oldest, Josh, is living at home while working and paying off student loans. Our youngest, Griffin recently left his active duty Army job and is now National Guard here at home. He moved back to Michigan with his wife Kirsten and our beautiful granddaughter Hazel. I work part time and try to fit as much reading into my life as possible.
This entry was posted in Book Reviews and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to The (Secret) Baby – ARC Review

  1. Pingback: TTT: Favorite Tropes | All In Good Time

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s