I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.The Cowboy Says I Do by Dylann Crush
Series: Tying the Knot in Texas #1
Published by Berkley Books on August 4, 2020
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Western
It's anything but a wedding cake walk for the mayor and the deputy sheriff when they team up to reinvent the town of Idont, Texas to Ido.
Newly elected mayor, Lacey Cherish, ran for office to redeem the family name after her father had to resign for un-mayorly like conduct. But if she wants to salvage her family's reputation, along with the town's economy, she'll need to think fast. With few options at hand, she starts to rebrand Idont as Ido, as the most romantic place in Texas to tie the knot.
Lacey's grand plans have just made Deputy Sheriff Bodie Phillips's life a whole lot harder. He's got bigger problems than helping the mayor bring in brides. Like figuring out why his dad and grandfather mysteriously shut down the family business, and who's abandoning dogs within the town limits.
When Lacey's chance at getting major publicity for Ido's first wedding is jeopardized, she's forced to rely on Bodie for help. But as their attraction heats up, they both have to decide how far they're willing to go to revive the town and their families' honor.
On the very first day of newly-elected mayor, Lacey Charish’s term, Philips Stationery and Imports, the biggest company in Idont, Texas announces they’re closing up immediately, with no notice given. Now, with a good chunk of the town unexpectedly out of work, she has to come up with something quickly, in order to save the town from disaster.
That’s where we start, anyway. With Lacey just trying to figure out a way to hold the town together. But Brodie Phillips, Deputy Sheriff, is right in her way no matter what she tries to do, and since it’s his family that owned the company that just closed down, Lacey isn’t feeling very generous toward him.
The overall plot, trying to figure out how to save Idont, Texas and employee as many of the suddenly-unemployed townspeople as possible, was really clever. Lacey comes up with a plan to change the name of the town from Idont to Ido and make the town attractive for destination weddings. It’s ingenious, and what’s even more impressive is that she sits down and comes up with an actual plan for how to do it. Which doesn’t stop Brodie from putting down her idea before he’s even heard her out.
Which brings me to my biggest issue with this book. As much as I wanted to see Lacey succeed and get the rebranded Ido, Texas on the map as a wedding destination, I didn’t like anyone else in the book, Brodie included. (Except Zina the vet. She was lovely.) But every other person was awful. Brodie in particular. He repeatedly ignored Lacey’s instructions to let her handle her own job, jumping in and usually making things worse. He just couldn’t allow her to handle a situation herself. She’s trying to get the town to see her as their leader, and earn their respect after her father’s shenanigans during his tenure as mayor, and every time she opens her mouth, Brodie jumps in to talk over her, completely undermining everything she’s trying to do. Even worse, he calls her stupid nicknames from their childhood while he does it. He makes her look weak and ineffectual over and over. And Lacey tells him to stop it. She tells him that it makes her look bad and why she needs him to quit, and he continues to do it.
The issue with Philips Stationery and Imports spins out of control when Brodie’s dad and grandfather, who own it, come up with scheme after scheme to get their abandoned inventory back, despite it belonging to the town legally because of some unpaid rent and abandonment laws. It’s blindingly obvious why they want those items and only those items back. Well, blindingly obvious to the reader, but apparently not Lacey and Brodie who are shocked when they figure it out. And this brings me to the other issue with Brodie. Despite knowing what Lacey is trying to do to save the town, he continues to keep information from her that would help. Just flat out won’t tell her what’s going on, even when she asks. To his credit, he doesn’t lie to her; he tells her that he won’t tell her, but he’s still keeping the info from her.
Ultimately, this book was harmless but forgettable. I like Lacey’s friend, the vet, but I don’t know if I like her enough to look for the next book. If it showed up in my house, I’d read it, but I probably wouldn’t seek it out.