Mar 16, 2012

Posted by in Reviews | 2 Comments

Review: Waltz This Way by Dakota Cassidy (Ex-Trophy Wives #3)

Contemporary Romance
March 6 2012
Trade Paperback
352 pages
Berkley
Received from publisher

Yummy Man – Drew McPhee
Kick Ass Chick – Melina Cherkasov

From Goodreads –
Left without a partner…

When former ballroom champion Melina Cherkasov found out that her famous husband was cheating, she was devastated, especially since she was informed by a sleazy reporter on national TV. Thanks to an ironclad pre-nup and a scumbag ex, Melina has to pack up her dog and her dignity and take refuge in her dad’s retirement community in New Jersey.

…it’s time to take the lead.

To make ends meet, Melina puts her dancing shoes to use as an instructor at Westmeyer—a private school for boy geniuses. Teaching a bunch of hormonal teenagers the waltz is trying, but the school’s sexy handyman proves to be an ample distraction. Drew McPhee is perfect, except for one thing: he doesn’t like dancing. Thankfully, the finesse Drew lacks on the floor is more than made up for by his skills in the bedroom. And after one steamy night, the ballroom diva is the one getting swept off her feet…

———-

Waltz This Way is a story about a divorced woman and a divorced man and how they find each other and have a second chance at love.  I find that stories about first love lost and second love found and all that jazz can be tricky.  For the reader to truly feel like the couple deserves a second shot at love, they need to be really likeable.  No whiny “omg I have to go to the ‘regular people store’ instead of the boutique I usually go to” lady and no ‘”I must go and do every woman I see just so I can prove that my manhood wasn’t the reason my marriage failed” man.  There is none of that in this book.  You reach the end truly believing that, not only do these two deserve to find love again, but that they are perfectly suited for one another.

When we meet Mel, she is an ex-pro ballroom dancer and married to a very wealthy – and quite a bit older – choreographer.  Even though she’s married to money, you don’t get the impression that it’s all that important to her.  Which is good because when everything goes to sh*t, it’s hard to feel bad for someone who is whining because they can’t buy that $300 pair of shoes.  She is smart and resourceful and when her marriage ends, she is completely crushed.  I totally wanted to cheer for her even when she did little things for the first time like actually get though to one of her students or when she opens her first ever chequing account.   She was lovely.

Drew is a fantastic character.  Even though his initial reaction to Mel and her new job was a bit surprising (and closed-minded) I still loved reading him.  And even though his constantly wanting to place Mel is his ex-wife’s mold was really quite frustrating at times, I still loved reading him.  He is so down to earth and just wants what is best for his son and his family.  His story is a sad one but he won’t let it get him down.  Did I mention he was yummy.  Yes he was.

Mel’s best friend Jackie drove me a bit nuts.  I found her too harsh.  And the woman who owns the agency that helps Mel find work after her divorce was a bit much for me too.  I respected her attitude and loved the message she was passing but her personality was off for me.  I’m not a fan of people like that in real life and, apparently, not a fan of them in my books either.

I love how real this book felt.  The characters reaction’s to their situation was well written and was very realistic.  Even though Dakota has a fun and snarky writing voice, the emotion in this book felt sincere.  The book’s overall tone was lovely – a great mix of humor (without being too over the top) and charm and warmth.  And the twist that is revealed near the end of the book really took me by surprise.  It was a good one though – made me not hate Mel’s ex-husband as much.  In fact, everything turns out really well and you feel like everything ended up where it was always meant to be.

Waltz This Way is the third book in Dakota Cassidy’s Trophy Ex-Wives series but it can totally be read as a standalone.  In fact, I have not read the other instalments and didn’t feel lost in the least.  It’s a wonderful story about discovering who you really are after being someone else’s version of you for so many years.  Filled with strong likable characters I’m going to want to re-visit someday.  This is definitely going on my keeper shelf.

4.5 stars

Giggle worthy quote

“’Hey Mel!’ Frankie called with a smile and a wave, eyeing her over the rim of her wineglass.

Jasmine patted a bar stool at the wide island countertop beside Maxine, and Mel slid into it, keeping her eyes on the Caesar salad, cheese and crackers, and French break in the center.

Max nudged her with her shoulder.  ‘You gonna look us in the eye and tell us you had sex, or do you want to do it from behind the bathroom door?’

Frankie and Jasmine laughed when Mel let her head fall to her arms with a groan.  ‘How could you possibly know?  And don’t you three dare feed me the line about glowing.  If I’m glowing, it’s the bright fluorescent glow of my shame.’”

Books in the Ex-Trophy Wives series –
You Dropped a Blonde on Me
Burning Down the Spouse
Waltz This Way

  1. Great review Julie, glad you liked it so much. This series is already on my wishlist.

  2. I haven’t read anything by Dakota Cassidy yet, but after this wonderful review I’m adding this to my TBR.

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