Maybe For You: A Whiskey and Weddings Novel by Nicole McLaughlin
I've really enjoyed Nicole McLaughlin's prior novels. Maybe For You missed the mark for me. It was a book that I kept reading hoping there might be more of a hook, but I never really got into the characters or storyline.
After her fiance was killed shortly before their wedding, Alexis Parker's spent a year in Italy working through her grief and trying to move on. She's back in town where she'll help her brother at his whiskey distillery before moving on to a new job with the CIA.
Jake Cooper has been the one person to keep her grounded. He's been her sounding board. When the chance comes up to join Jake on a national tour to promote their whiskey, she takes it. His reputation as a playboy is causing issues within the company, and Alex could be the one to keep him in line. She never expects to find herself falling for him.
Jake's promised his business partner, who happens to be Alex's brother, that he'll take good care of her. While that's in the back of his mind, he can't help but be drawn to her on this trip. No matter what he does, he's about to make someone mad. He agrees with Alex to have a quick fling and keep it hidden from her brother. When they return, it will be like nothing happened. Only, they return and Jake's not ready to give her up.
Can Jake convince everyone that his playboy days are truly behind him and that he wants to make Alex a permanent fixture in his life?
Some of the characters appeared in prior novels, but I hadn't read them. Maybe For You stands alone, but I often found myself wishing I was reading Charlotte and Dean's story instead. Alex is still grieving and I'm not sure she is in the right place to be in a relationship. Right to the end, some of her statements and attitudes frustrated me. I wanted her to grow up, but I just didn't see it happening.
Jake was a solid character, but the tension between him and Alex's brother grew tiring. Dean takes his big brother role to the max and needed to shut up and listen from time to time. In the end, this book ended up being a book I think I would have been fine not finishing, which is never a good sign. I did finish it, but even with the ending, I'm not convinced there relationship is more than a fleeting thing.