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Fit to be Tied    by Karen Kendall order for
Fit to be Tied
by Karen Kendall
Order:  USA  Can
Signet, 2007 (2007)
* *   Reviewed by Martina Bexte

Jennifer Canby is thrilled when the man of her dreams, Tom Brookhaven, finally proposes to her at a fancy restaurant over coffee and lava-cake. But when they race to her parent's house to share the news, it's dampened by her mother's caustic announcement that her own marriage is over. A tiny voice warns Jen to take note, but she's far too happy to consider her parents' failed marriage as any sort of dark omen for her own impending nuptials. On the day of her wedding Jen will wish she'd taken heed.

Eight months later, the big day arrives and Jen couldn't be happier - that is until her shoe goes missing, her teeth turn blue from breakfasting on blueberries, she breaks a mirror, and - moments before taking her vows - discovers Tom is three sheets to the wind. What?? He had to be stinking drunk to say I do? She wonders dismally what else could go wrong. Well, plenty. Tom's ex-wife shows up at the reception, throwing out digs and innuendos. When Jen angrily confronts Tom about never having mentioned Helena, he quips he didn't think the blonde, voluptuous beauty was 'a big deal'. Hurt and confused, Jen begins to wonder if she's made a horrible mistake. She hopes Tom will offer better explanations during their Caribbean honeymoon. But he disappoints her again, and within days the newlyweds are headed for divorce court throwing verbal barbs at one another and bickering about who gets custody of the dog.

Karen Kendall balances humor with a more serious look at relationships and how complications arise through misinformation and misunderstandings. The fact that Jennifer is using her parents' poor example as a barometer, does not bode well for her reconciliation with Tom. Jen figures ending the marriage is safer than trying to work through their various difficulties. The story is often funny as Jen and Tom spar, sling barbs, and fight over their dog. But this goes on for too long, especially since it's told entirely through Jennifer's point of view - she refuses to let Tom make amends or even to try to see their situation through his eyes. Once resolution comes, it's too late to be completely believable. Even so, Fit To Be Tied is an entertaining contemporary romance filled with crisp dialogue, quirky characters, and situations that make for fun and lighthearted reading.

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