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Always The Bridesmaid    by Sarah Webb order for
Always The Bridesmaid
by Sarah Webb
Order:  USA  Can
Avon, 2004 (2001)

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* *   Reviewed by Melissa Parcel

As Amy O'Sullivan approaches thirty, she's a bit depressed about her life. She works at a fun but stagnant job at a children's bookstore, and has broken off her engagement to Jack after a three-year relationship. To make matters worse, her younger sister, Suzi, has just announced her impending marriage to an Australian hunk named Matt. Amy's best friend Beth will be tying the knot a month after Suzi, and both brides have asked her to be a bridesmaid.

Amy is depressed about her single life and dreads having to deal with all of the wedding planning rituals. Then she meets Steve, a children's book author, at work and the two hit it off right away. But when Amy finds out that her ex-fiancÚ is seriously dating another one of her best friends, she is knocked for a loop and begins to push everyone away. Is there hope for Amy and Steve's relationship? Is Amy doomed to be 'always the bridesmaid, never the bride'?

This is an entertaining chick lit novel set in Ireland. Readers will laugh along with the engagement rituals, dress shopping, and hen parties. I particularly enjoyed the descriptions of Rome, when Amy and Beth take a trip together. It made me feel like I was traveling to this marvelous country along with them. Amy is a sympathetic character to whom readers will mostly relate - though she does get quite whiny and morose about her single state, which borders on tedious after a while.

Avid readers can live vicariously through Amy as she goes about her daily tasks at the bookstore. On the job scenes provide an interesting contrast to all the wedding planning chaos. The happy, yet realistic, ending is sure to please romance lovers everywhere. Always The Bridesmaid is a true celebration for those who delight in chick lit.

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