Wedding Bell Blues (The Piper Cove Chronicles) by Linda Windsor | Paperback | Barnes & Noble
Wedding Bell Blues (The Piper Cove Chronicles)
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Wedding Bell Blues (The Piper Cove Chronicles)

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by Linda Windsor
     
 

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Not even a big budget can help Alex make her sister's wedding the event of the year. The usually calm and collected Alex is rattled when the man who walked out on her sixteen years ago to pursue a rock-and-roll career returns to be the best man. In desperation, she calls on her three best friends to help pull off the shindig, and keep her away from the

Overview

Not even a big budget can help Alex make her sister's wedding the event of the year. The usually calm and collected Alex is rattled when the man who walked out on her sixteen years ago to pursue a rock-and-roll career returns to be the best man. In desperation, she calls on her three best friends to help pull off the shindig, and keep her away from the devastatingly handsome Josh. Tomboy Ellen, shy Jan, and vivacious Sue Ann join forces to keep Alex on track. But fate won't be stopped in this small seaside town. Alex finds it as impossible to avoid Josh as it is to deny that he's a changed man. Is it too late for their love? Only faith, family, and best friends will tell.

Editorial Reviews

Karen Kingsbury
“Linda Windsor is no doubt among the top inspirational authors of our day.”
Lori Copeland
“Linda Windsor never fails to deliver an insightful, wonderfully funny story!”
Kristin Billerbeck
“Windsor is an excellent writer and Wedding Bell Blues is a heartwarming tale.”
Christian Retailing
“Delightful characters … a heartwarming story that will appeal to fans of romance fiction.”
Romantic Times BOOKclub
“Windsor’s first installment in the Piper Cove Chronicles has Alexandra and Josh confronting past hurts and hidden emotions. Windsor adds the perfect ingredients of love, humor and friendship. This will be a series not to miss.”
Romantic TimesBOOKclub
"Windsor’s first installment in the Piper Cove Chronicles has Alexandra and Josh confronting past hurts and hidden emotions. Windsor adds the perfect ingredients of love, humor and friendship. This will be a series not to miss."
Publishers Weekly
Billed as inspirational women's fiction, the first offering in Avon's inspirational line is pure, chaste romantic diversion. Alexandra "Alex" Butler was jilted years ago when her hunky husband, Josh Turner, left soon after their marriage to become a rock star. When Josh returns to Piper Cove on the Atlantic Ocean as best man in Alex's sister's wedding, the professional decorator and divorcée finds to her dismay that her passion for him still simmers under her businesslike exterior. Alex's three "bosom buddies" provide interest throughout, especially the mechanically minded Ellen Brittingham, one of the most promising characters in the novel. A few unfortunate sentences are over the top, even for this genre: "She was as indelibly etched under his skin as his tattoos" and "the sight of Alex... was enough to send the wooden totem pole at the Ocean City inlet jumping in the water before it self-ignited." Some plot elements are insensitive enough as to be unbelievable, such as Alex's father giving away Alex's beloved first home to her sister as a wedding gift, and then asking Alex to decorate it. But Windsor, an RWA Beacon Award-winning author and Christy Award finalist, is a competent writer, and the Piper Cove Chronicles should hold their own in inspirational romance. (July)

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780061171376
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
06/26/2007
Series:
Piper Cove Chronicles Series, #1
Pages:
304
Product dimensions:
5.31(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.68(d)

Read an Excerpt

Wedding Bell Blues (The Piper Cove Chronicles)

Chapter One

A sundae meeting was called for. Even though it was Wednesday, Alexandra Butler had put out the call to her friends. With a nostalgic smile at the celebration tradition that, like their friendship, had survived since high school, she pulled her Mercedes coupe into the parking space in front of the Piper Cove Country Club.

As of this morning, she had only one final payment to make on the loan that had subsidized her decorating business, one payment between her and financial freedom from her banker father's tight rein. To celebrate, hot chocolate and whipped cream were waiting inside, along with her bosom buddies.

Thank you, Lord, she prayed, grateful for the freedom, and her friends.

She needed her friends for more than a celebration. Her sister Lynn, whom their father called his little surprise when she was born twelve years after Alex, had called from a weekend trip to New York to announce her engagement to John Astor Whitlowe, Jr., a financial wunderkind just out of grad school. The couple was so excited, they'd even picked out Lynn's dress at a Fifth Avenue boutique. Alex's father, while overjoyed about the match, was determined to impress Lynn's future in-laws. They were not only from old money, but John's father was president of Mercantile One out of Bethesda, a large banking corporation that was taking Piper Cove Mercantile into its network. In other words, John's father was soon to be B. J. Butler's boss.

"I want us to nip in the bud that old notion that Eastern Shore men across the Chesapeake Bay are web-footed hicks," Benjamin JamesButler—known as B. J. by the locals—had told Alex earlier that morning. "Which is why we are gonna plan the finest shindig my money can buy. You've got a knack for making a pig's ear look like a silk purse, and Lynn's so aflutter with love and finals that she won't be much help to your mama, so I'm depending on you, Alex."

I'm depending on you, Alex. It was probably the first time Alex had ever heard those words from her father, and satisfaction hardly described the emotion overwhelming her. Usually B. J. Butler assigned duties like a commander, expecting them to be carried out because he said so, not because he needed anyone.

As Alex swung open her car door, a male voice interrupted her thoughts. "Alexandra, allow me."

Alex lowered her sunglasses, peering over them. "Thank you, Will. Taking the day off, or are you headed to a business luncheon?"

Will Warren had graduated two years ahead of Alex's high school class and now worked for her dad's bank as head of the mortgage department. He made no secret of his ambition to replace B. J., and Alex knew full well that Will's flirtation was nothing more than a potential rung on his ladder to success. It was futile, of course. Her father would give up his position only when they patted him in the face with a spade.

"Business . . . unfortunately," he added, his voice lowering in suggestion. "Believe me, I'd much rather spend an hour with you."

If her father heard that comment, or rather, its innuendo, B. J. would have shot Will on the spot. Alex kind of warmed to the idea, but she was forced by the restraint of the law to use verbal ammo on the would-be Romeo—

"Will Warren, if an hour's all you have to offer," a familiar voice interjected in a honeyed drawl, "a woman would as soon skip as bother."

As for stinging shots, that one would do. Alex grinned. "Hi, Suzie Q."

"Mrs. Wiltbank, good to see you," Will answered stiffly, as Sue Ann Quillen Wiltbank, of the Ocean City engineering Wiltbanks by marriage and the Piper Cove Quillen Realtors by birth, sashayed toward them in a smart black pantsuit, cut to accent her voluptuous curves. Although Alex's friend had gained a good twenty pounds since high school, it had all gone to the right places. "Tell Daddy I said hi, Will," Alex said, leaving the banker flushed from his white starched collar to his thinning brown hairline.

Suzie smothered her in a perfumed hug. "Alex!"

"You're bad," Alex chastised under her breath.

"That pig has had his nose stuck up my—"

"I know," Alex interrupted her, steering her toward the lighthouse-styled apex of the L-shaped building.

As one of Piper Cove's richest citizens, Sue Ann could say anything she wanted and not worry about reproach. Not that that had stopped her when she was merely an affluent realtor's daughter. Hers was the mouth always in gear, whether her brain was or not.

"Tush. I was going to say tush." Sue Ann's mischievous blue eyes twinkled like the genuine gemstones clustered on one of her many rings.

"Of course you were." Alex linked arms with her friend and ushered her through one of the double glass doors with a "Thanks" to the exiting customer who held it open for them.

"Why, Bobby McMann, aren't you the sweetest thing?" Sue Ann called over her shoulder to the man.

Alex could have reminded Sue Ann that Bobby was married and a practicing Catholic who'd perfected procreation by having six kids. But Sue Ann knew that. She simply couldn't help herself. Men brought out the flirt in her, no matter their age or shape. If Bobby had been sixty and balding, instead of a rugged, thirtysomething contractor, Sue Ann would have treated him just the same.

To the left of the entrance was the dining room, reflecting the formal elegance of Chesapeake Bay living. Alex steered her companion to the Coffee Café on the right. Its wildfowl theme and hunter green and beige color palette was in keeping with the natural habitat the area was known for. This room said smell the coffee, while the other suggested high tea served on the club's custom-designed china.

"There they are." Sue Ann pointed to a corner booth, where a brunette in a tank top and jeans jumped up and whistled.

Wedding Bell Blues (The Piper Cove Chronicles). Copyright © by Linda Windsor. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

What People are saying about this

Lori Copeland
“Linda Windsor never fails to deliver an insightful, wonderfully funny story!”
Kristin Billerbeck
“Windsor is an excellent writer and Wedding Bell Blues is a heartwarming tale.”
Karen Kingsbury
“Linda Windsor is no doubt among the top inspirational authors of our day.”

Meet the Author

Maryland author Linda Windsor has written some twenty-nine historical and contemporary novels for both the secular and inspirational markets, but she is most noted for delivering “The Lift of Laughter and Spirit” in her modern inspirational romances. A Christy finalist and winner of numerous industry awards, Linda has written for Multnomah Publishing (historical fiction and contemporary romances), Barbour Publishing (romcom novella), and Westbow Press (the Moonstruck romantic comedy trilogy). Wedding Bell Blues, the first book in her new The Piper Cove Chronicles series, is featured on Avon Inspire's launch list.

In addition to writing and doing fiction-writing workshops at conferences across the country, Linda continues a music and lay speaking ministry started by her and her late husband, and she is a part-time financial analyst. She also works on “as desperately needed” home improvement projects on the 18th-century-plus house that she and her husband began restoring in 1986. Wallpaper and paint are definitely in her near future.

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