Millie and the American Proposal – Annabel Scott

What to Expect:

Millie’s boyfriend James gets offered a job in Singapore, he accepts, thinking that she’ll give up her job and go with him. Only Millie gets offered a work secondment to New York which is too good an opportunity to turn down. When she arrives in the city, she soon discovers that she’s not the only one new in town; her ex-boyfriend, Rob, is back, and he’s separated from his wife. It’s time for Millie to work out what she wants from life. She’s got to decide whether she’s Team James or Team Rob as she gets her very own American Proposal.

This is the follow up to Millie and the American Wedding, and Millie and the American University, and as they were much loved, it’s great to see further transatlantic adventures of our heroine. It’s best if you’ve read the others first, or at least the former, as there’s a lot of backstory.

The Bella-Swan-Pathetically-Self-Sacrificing-Factor– Millie immediately makes a strong choice by ditching James as soon as he makes the executive decision that her career means nothing, and that they are moving to Singapore where she will hang around while he works long hours. A serendipitous offer then takes her away from her loneliness and back over the pond to the New York branch of her ad agency, where she shows how much she loves her job and could never have given it up for James, who fades into the distance at first.

Kooks for your Kindle?– All Millie’s old mates are back, firstly London party girl Amber, who visits her in New York and manages to have disastrous effects on Millie’s most important client. James and Millie were together for four years, and he seemed to be having trouble balancing career and relationship. His idea of placation was to throw money at the problem, but he obviously still adores her. Millie has a new colleague and flat mate, a rather tense girl by the name of Gillian who brings new depths to the work focused. Kristen and Joel (who got married in the first book) are parents of two now, but still come into the city when they can to meet the others and let their hair down. Tara and Tyler who met at the wedding are expecting a baby, and finally Rob, last seen moving to Colorado with his awful wife Collette, is back in town alone in a bachelor pad. He’s separated from Collette, sees their daughter Vivienne at weekends, and spends the rest of the time trying to get Millie back into his life. He’s changed a bit, he seemed a little weak in previous books but knows what he wants now.

Painting a Picture for your Paperback?– I’m not convinced Millie knows how lucky she is; two hot, eligible men chasing after her, a few months in the most fun city in the world without having to worry about visas, a ready made group of friends there already, great social life, what more could a girl want? It’s potentially an ideal world for a newly single woman in her late twenties, working and socialising in the city, and living within staggering distance of a good night out.

Evaluation of your eBook?– It’s shorter than I expected, but still a full length book, and once I started it I had to read the whole thing immediately. I guess when characters are already established you can jump right into the story. The conclusion’s not predictable from the outset, and *spoiler alert*, the proposal in question might not even be one of marriage! There’s plenty at stake; such as how much would you give up for someone, and should they ask it of you? There’s plenty going on and it’s well paced, give it a shot for a warm, fast read full of dilemas, but do yourself a favour and read Millie and the American Wedding first!

Frothy Ranking: 4/5 cocktails.

Can be obtained from:

UK: Amazon for £1.99

US: Amazon for $2.99

Millie and The American University – Annabel Scott (AKA Anna Bell)

We’ve reviewed this author before, but now she’s changed her name, due to a well deserved book deal. This is a prequel to Millie and the American Wedding, Millie being an English lass with a fondness for all things american who went to her college friend’s Manhattan wedding. Now we get to flash back ten years to the year she spent at Kendry college in Pennsylvania, only an hour and a half from New York City and with a reputation as a party college. As we know from the present day book Millie never turns down a night out and has a cast iron liver, so pretty soon she’s gone native, playing beer pong, and is up to her ears in dramas with friends, men and sororities.

Kooks for your Kindle?– Jen and Casey are the first to take Millie under their wing and introduce her to the party scene. They’re a hybrid of the ugly stepsisters and Mean Girls, and try to push Millie into dressing like them, dieting and fitting right in. Kristen is their antithesis and soon becomes a much better friend to Millie as well as the only person who can rein her in on wild nights out. Rob is the strangely familiar guy she repeatedly runs into without fully recognising, the most interesting of the men on campus (and more appetising than Phil The Gangster).

The Bella-Swan-Pathetically-Self-Sacrificing-Factor– Fortunately Millie doesn’t stand for the Mean Girls’ behaviour for long, but the damage is done when they take a hit out on Millie’s reputation.

Painting a Picture for your Paperback?– I was expecting this story to be reminiscent of my own time on an exchange at a little private college (in Indiana), but our parties were more randomly organised because there wasn’t what they call the Greek system- the fraternities and sororities which you all know about from the movies. I’m quite glad about this as they seem pretty terrifying, with the pledging, hazing, bitchy cliques and nightmare guys. As it is, this is a great introduction to the system as seen through Millie’s fresh eyes. Incidentally it’s a definite bonus to be over 21 so you don’t have to dive out of windows when the parties get raided by the police!

Evaluation of your eBook?– It’s definitely the same boozy Millie from the other book, the romantic situations here are the same ones that are referenced at Kirsten’s wedding ten years on, although this doesn’t cover as far as the nasty situation with Millie’s boyfriend’s snobby mother. It’s probably more suited to the YA generation as Millie’s dramas here are all friend, boy and social media related, but if you’re a little older and had a thing for Sweet Valley High books as a kid then you’ll still find it a guilty pleasure. Obviously if you enjoyed Millie and the American Wedding then it’s a must read to see where it all started.

Frothy Ranking: 3.5/5 cocktails.

Can be obtained from:

UK: Amazon for £1.53.

US: Amazon for $2.99.

Don’t Tell The Groom – Anna Bell

Penny is feeling pretty pleased with herself, her man Mark finally proposed (only slightly behind schedule), and she’s supplemented their wedding fund by playing online bingo- or so she thought. Penny’s dreams of Vera Wang, Jimmy Choo and all that go with them are thwarted when she discovers she lost £10,000 and has a gambling addiction. But all is not lost- Penny has an idea. She’ll plan the wedding herself, keeping it a secret from Mark, and bring the whole thing in for under £5,000. How hard could all that be?

Kooks for your Kindle?– I loved all the supporting characters, none of them unrealistically over the top, and all adding their own stories. Mark the fiancé was so well suited to Penny and understanding of her quirks, knowing her a lot better than she thought he did. Penny’s best friend Lou had her own issues, but also had very good reason for keeping them from Penny. Mark’s Nanny Violet seemed a little scary at first, but she had the most interesting tale to tell, going back to the 1940s.

The Bella-Swan-Pathetically-Self-Sacrificing-Factor– I’m not normally a fan of heroines so ditzy they can lose £10,000 without noticing, but I was pleasantly surprised- of course it was a mistake not to tell Mark, but she found some ingenious ways to get around the loss of the money, and didn’t mess up again. The subject of gambling addiction is not one I’ve read about before, but it was sensitively handled without taking away from the fun tone of the book.

Painting a picture for your paperback?– Most of the book is on the subject of planning a wedding and the life together that follows, from the perspective of a wedding-obsessed gal. Now I’m the total opposite, but I thoroughly enjoyed the chatty, contemporary, fun narrative and the deadline created a page-turning effect. Any woman who is or will be soon planning a wedding on a budget would do well to read this for some clever and unexpected money saving ideas! (Not to get all service-y, but if you’re planning a wedding that’s either small, unusually themed, budget, same-sex or if you’re just not a fan of the Wedding-Industrial Complex, I totally recommend browsing through Offbeat Bride, so many awesome ideas to be borrowed.)

Evaluation of your eBook?– This will probably be much loved by all chicklit fans, but is especially suited to those that enjoy the Shopaholic/Bridget Jones branch of the family tree, with a lovable, slightly disastrous heroine and plenty of humour. This was a well-rounded book, with some unexpected depth and characters to care about, and it’s cheap too. I found it slightly better than Millie And The American Wedding by the same author; both are wedding themed, but refreshingly different. Side note: It should be required reading for any bride-to-be, it’s a great cautionary tale of taking it all too seriously. Also, I think this might be my favourite cover art ever!

Frothy Ranking: 4/5 cocktails.

Can be obtained from:

UK: From Amazon for £1.53

US: From Amazon for $2.99

Millie And The American Wedding – Anna Bell

English twenty-something Millie is unable to turn down an order from an old American college friend to come to New York and be her bridesmaid. Unfortunately, not only has Millie slept with the groom (before introducing the bride to him in college), but one of the ushers was her first love and is now married to one of the bridesmaids. In the course of the week, Millie drinks about a year’s worth of alcohol, lives to tell, befriends some of the other bridesmaids, becomes unwilling secret keeper to many, offends the maid of honour, meets various potential new men and finally learns the truth about her former love.

Kooks for your Kindle?– Lots of secondary characters, and even the least sympathetic have their reasons, with the notable exception of Millie’s ex’s mother, who is good old-fashioned evil. Due to all the potential men in the story the outcome isn’t preordained which is a bonus. In getting involved in everyone else’s dramas, the week becomes even more stressful for Millie.

The Bella-Swan-Pathetically-Self-Sacrificing-Factor– Millie stands up for herself well, apart from an initial hiccup with the maid of honour, knows when to step aside gracefully and when to give someone a good slap. It’s a cautionary tale of optimistically hoping getting drunk will help cope with life and then each day closer to the wedding it only causes complications and makes things worse. Of course it makes things more fun at the time and leads to more than one wardrobe malfunction.

Painting a picture for your paperback?– American weddings are totally different from those on the other side of the pond, more bridesmaids/ushers, rehearsal dinners, bridal showers, and this is a great example seen through foreign eyes. Of course some things are the same, hen nights, family dramas, exes, champagne, big dresses. The book is a nice guided tour of an extremely eventful New York wedding.

Evaluation of your eBook?– A refreshing lack of flashbacks, just a straightforward narrative mostly over the course of the wedding week. I would have liked see more of Millie’s normal life to get to know her even better, but on the other hand it was nice to get right into the story. One or two grammatical errors didn’t detract from the experience. The backstory with Millie’s ex is a little heartbreaking, other than that it’s nice and frothy, a quick read, poignant, fun, eventful and fast paced.

Frothy Ranking: 3.5/5 cocktails.

Can be obtained from:

UK: Only 99p from Amazon, I’ve not found it anywhere else, so possibly an Amazon self-publish.

US: Amazon for $2.99.