on May 1st 2016
Purchase: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo
An irresistible new love story from the #1
New York Times
bestselling author of the Fool's Gold series, set in a town
calls "so appealing, readers will want to start scoping out real estate."
To overcome her painful past, baker Shelby Gilmore goes on the hunt for a friend—a male friend—to convince her stubborn psyche that men can be trusted. But where in a town as small as Fool's Gold will the petite blonde find a guy willing to not date her?
Dark, charming Aidan Mitchell puts the "adventure" in Mitchell Adventure Tours…and into the beds of his many willing female tourists. Until he realizes he's inadvertently become that guy—the one-night Casanova—and worse, everyone in town knows it. Maybe Shelby's boy/girl experiment will help him see women as more than just conquests so he can change his ways and win back his self-respect.
As Aidan and Shelby explore the secret lives of men and women, the heat between them fires up the Fool's Gold rumor mill. If no one will believe they're just friends, maybe they should give the gossips something to really talk about!
~~Reviewed by Evelyn~~
BEST OF MY LOVE, the 20th and final book in the very popular Fool’s Gold series by best-selling author Susan Mallery, is a variation on a friends with benefits theme. Can two people who have been unsuccessful in previous relationships come together strictly as friends in order to help “fix” each other so they’ll be ready to go out and pursue long term relationships with someone new?
That’s the question proposed by Shelby Gilmore, one of Fool’s Gold’s newer citizens. Raised in a home with a very abusive father, Shelby finds it very hard to trust men. She continually has chosen the wrong men for relationships and she hopes that the move to Fool’s Gold will let her start over. Not wanting to find herself in another failing relationship, she decides that, instead of a boyfriend, she needs a man who can be her friend only so that she can learn to be comfortable with him and eventually trust him without a romance complicating everything. In order to make her idea work, she needs to find a man that she is not attracted to romantically, but that she could see herself being friends with. Additionally, the man in question needs to also have had trouble with relationships so that she can help fix him by helping him understand what he does wrong around women.
Enter local hiking and camping trip guide and business owner, Aiden Mitchell. Aiden has the reputation in Fool’s Gold of being quite a player, especially since he has had many one night stands with tourists who hire his company for their vacation plans. Shelby cannot imagine ever being in a relationship with Aiden because of his reputation, but she decides that he would be perfect for her plan. She presents her idea to Aiden, and after some thought, he agrees to her plan. He’s tired of sleeping with woman whose names he can’t even remember later. Maybe Shelby can help him turn things around so that he can become a respected member of society again.
I liked Shelby very much. She was a stronger woman than she thought she was because she survived her father’s abuse, but surviving didn’t let her get past it when dealing with the other men in her life. I applaud her for wanting to work on her issues, even though she may have not really known how deep those issues were. I wasn’t as fond of Aiden when the book began. I thought he was a total jerk, and I wouldn’t have been as optimistic about Shelby’s chances of redeeming him as she was. I also thought that the book was a little slow at the beginning as they are starting to get to know each other. I was glad to see that the pace picked up as their friendship grew.
As in the other books in this series, the town of Fool’s Gold served as another character in the book. I have not read all of the books in this series, but I felt that this book, being the last, may have brought back a lot more of the characters from the previous books. I didn’t always know who the characters were, and somehow I felt I should have known their history. It didn’t seem to work as well as a standalone book as some of the others I’ve read. It was also very obviously setting up for a new series, Happily Inc., and I’m excited to be starting new with a new series now that I’ve discovered Susan Mallery and her wonderful books.
Despite its slow start and the seemingly many characters that I didn’t know but felt that I should, I enjoyed Shelby and Aiden’s story very much.
I voluntarily reviewed an Advanced Readers Copy of this book.