Title: The Fixer Upper
Author: Anne Conley
Published: February 23, 2015
Disclaimer: I was sent a copy of this book to review by My Family’s Heart. All opinions are my own.
James, a UK based chef, has tried to make a career with EAT-TV, but his womanizing ways aren’t what they’re looking for with their wholesome family style image. However, the producers of a new reality show about single life, The Fixer Upper, think he’s perfect. Against his wishes his agent convinces him to give it a shot. His overpriced bachelor pad is needing a mortgage payment, and he needs a job to support the tween-aged daughter that’s recently been dumped in his lap.
Margaret Dumas is control freak who has micromanaged her marriage to shambles. When she makes a deal with her mother to quit fixing her up if she’ll do this new reality show, she thinks she’s won. No more blind dates, no more friendly advice, no more “chance meetings” with her Mother’s friends’ sons. The only catch is she’s got to go on detestable reality television and expose her dating habits to a total stranger who is supposed to “fix” her and make her a dating machine. As if.
When Margaret meets James, they clash on the surface, but deep down they recognize something in the other that they want. Redemption.
Apparently couples finding love in reality based tv show settings is something that I really like. This is the second book I’ve read recently that has that set up and I’m really falling for it. The premise of the Fixer Upper is a reality television show that finds singles, and teaches them how to really get out there and date, showing them the way to dress, act, and getting advice for when the dates actually start to happen. The romance here though is between Margaret and James who when they first meet clash in the best of ways.
The romance here is great, and real. It’s sweet and a bit wicked, a great build up to the happily ever after ending that this book delivers on. What I love most of all however, is the transformation that Margaret goes through. Not the superficial one with the makeover and less than subtle advice, but the way that she changes, grows and comes to love herself. It’s refreshing to see that change in a heroine and I was so happy to see her happy. I didn’t care for James at first, but he also undergoes his own personal transformation, and there’s really no one else out there for him other than Margaret.