DON'T CALL ME SWEETHEART (Something Borrowed #1) by Codi Gary


Weddings are big business in picturesque Sweetheart, California, and Something Borrowed’s rent-a-bridesmaid service is thriving among the Hollywood elite. For the women who work there, a walk down the aisle is just a paycheck—until the right guy makes it priceless . . . 


Marley Stevenson never imagined her stint as a rented Maid of Honor would practically become a career. Then again, nothing in her life has gone according to plan. At least the money’s good—and she needs it to pay off student loans and help out her mom. But the job has rules, which have never been an issue . . . until one encounter with a gorgeous best man—and his swoon-worthy Southern accent—sends Marley reeling. 

Determined to get through the weekend with her professional reputation intact, Marley grits her teeth and sends out her best “unavailable” vibes, but Luke Jessup doesn’t give up that easy. A former Marine and a current SWAT team officer, his focus is legendary—and it’s on Marley. Jeopardizing her job is bad enough, and starting a relationship based on half-truths is worse—yet Marley is beginning to wonder if certain risks are worth taking, especially in the name of true love . . .


DON'T CALL ME SWEETHEART is full of all the sass, humor and small-town charm that I've come to expect from Codi Gary. Marley is a hard-working, confident woman with a huge amount of love in her heart for her small town but big aspirations of saving up for her move to New York. When she literally bumps into Luke, a gorgeous, mountain of a man with a sexy southern accent and heaps of understated charm, she can't help but agree to a date with him. Luke and Marley have a real spark between them but in an unfortunate coincidence, she discovers that he is the Best Man in the wedding for which she's just been hired on as a rented Maid of Honor, and her company has a strict policy. But in spite of the rules and Marley's attempts to keep her distance, these two just can't resist each other.

There are so many little details in this story that I think just made it so special. Little touches that really make the story feel real and endear you to the characters. Like Luke's ears. I love that they're described as being just a bit too big for him and even though he's muscular and handsome and funny, it's just such a sweet little characteristic which makes him unique and lovable. I think the concept for the story is really clever – a rental Bridesmaid falling for the Best Man. Marley's situation, with her job, the non-disclosure agreement and having to deal with a particularly venomous Bride, causes an interesting level of emotional conflict and raises some real questions on ethics. The novel also really highlights the role that fear and forgiveness play in love and Luke's wedding toast made me love him all the more.

I think the author did a wonderful job of making you fall in love with the town and its charming, romantically named local haunts. She also gave you snippets of moments with secondary characters that just drew you in more and left you hoping for their own story in the future. The novel was full of several twists and surprises that I didn't see coming and characters who had a few tricks up their sleeves. If you're looking for a fun romance that'll keep you on your toes, I highly recommend checking out DON'T CALL ME SWEETHEART. 

Disclosure: I received this book free in exchange for my honest review. All thoughts and opinions shared are my own. 




An obsessive bookworm, CODI GARY likes to write sexy small-town contemporary romances with humor, grand gestures, and blush-worthy moments. When she’s not writing, she can be found reading her favorite authors, squealing over her must-watch shows, and playing with her children. She lives in Idaho with her family.

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