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Well Met #3

Well Matched

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Single mother April Parker has lived in Willow Creek for twelve years with a wall around her heart. On the verge of being an empty nester, she's decided to move on from her quaint little town, and asks her friend Mitch for his help with some home improvement projects to get her house ready to sell.

Mitch Malone is known for being the life of every party, but mostly for the attire he wears to the local Renaissance Faire -- a kilt (and not much else) that shows off his muscled form to perfection. While he agrees to help April, he needs a favor too: she'll pretend to be his girlfriend at an upcoming family dinner, so that he can avoid the lectures about settling down and having a more "serious" career than high school coach and gym teacher. April reluctantly agrees, but when dinner turns into a weekend trip, it becomes hard to tell what's real and what's been just for show. But when the weekend ends, so must their fake relationship.

As summer begins, Faire returns to Willow Creek, and April volunteers for the first time. When Mitch's family shows up unexpectedly, April pretends to be Mitch's girlfriend again... something that doesn't feel so fake anymore. Despite their obvious connection, April insists they've just been putting on an act. But when there's the chance for something real, she has to decide whether to change her plans -- and open her heart -- for the kilt-wearing hunk who might just be the love of her life.

An accidentally in-love rom-com filled with Renaissance Faire flower crowns, kilts, corsets, and sword fights.

336 pages, Paperback

First published October 19, 2021

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About the author

Jen DeLuca

6 books3,530 followers
Jen DeLuca was born and raised near Richmond, Virginia, but now lives in Arizona with her husband and a houseful of rescue pets. She loves latte-flavored lattes, Hokies football, and the Oxford comma. Well Met is her first novel, inspired by her time volunteering as a pub wench with her local Renaissance Faire.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 3,043 reviews
Profile Image for Cait Jacobs (Caitsbooks).
305 reviews14.6k followers
October 26, 2021
I would die for Mitch.

I'm sorry, but he might be my favorite hero in this series. Who am I kidding? I'm not sorry. I love him so much, even Simon pales in comparison.

This book was such a fun, addictive read. And I'm not just saying this because I adore Mitch. I'm saying this because I also adore our protagonist, April. She's been through a lot and has built a wall around herself, and I loved watching her learn how to come out of her shell over the course of this book. Her dynamic with Mitch was so fun to watch, and did I mention there's the fake dating trope? And only one bed? This book spoils us.

Now, if you've read Jen DeLuca's previous books, you probably already have an idea of what to expect from the writing. It's grounded, relatable, with plenty of wit. What I love a lot about this book, that we didn't see much in the previous two, is the actual town of Willow Creek. We know the Ren Faire well by now, but through April's eyes we see the downsides of such a small town.

But don't worry, we still get some time on Faire grounds. It definitely isn't as big of a part of this book as it is the first, or even really the second, but I appreciated the glimpses of it we got. And the rest of the plot and characters made up for the lack of Renaissance escapism.

In the end, this was a fantastic installment in a series that made me spend way too much money on my own Ren Faire dress (no, technically Jen DeLuca didn't force me to buy it, but I am blaming her).

I'm going to miss Mitch and April, but I already cant wait for my next reread.

-Thoughts Before Reading-
I just got a renaissance dress for when I go to the ren faire later this year so, of course, I reread this entire series and am finally gonna start my ARC of book 3

Also, somehow I don't think I've read the description before now (I just knew it was Mitch and April's story and was sold) and there's FAKE DATING?!?!? I could not be more excited to read this
Profile Image for jessica.
2,555 reviews35.6k followers
October 27, 2021
this is cute! if you love the tried and true fake dating trope, along with a ‘theres only one bed’ situation and a ren faire, then this is the book for you!

and while i do think this installment is an improvement from the second book in terms of character chemistry and overall plot, im feeling a little bummed by it. i think ive just read too many fake dating stories lately that im becoming a little turned off by the trope altogether. not this books fault by any means, so its unfortunate i happened to make this discovery whilst reading this. im just a little let down that this doesnt offer anything more than a ‘fake dating, development of real feelings, denying those feelings, and finally a grand gesture to win them back’ format. i definitely think this story had more than enough room to include more content or more character development.

but again, if you want an ever reliable fake dating story, you will want to pick this up. its quick and light and gets the job done.

3.5 stars
Profile Image for Nilufer Ozmekik.
2,309 reviews44.1k followers
October 25, 2021
Oh boy! I was waiting for devouring Mitch’s book since I’ve read “Well Met”, irresistible sexy god in killing kilts: I fantasized the character someone between Outlander’s Sam Heughan meets James McAvoy and when I rethought that image, my cheeks got hurt because of too much grinning!

At the second book, when the author gave us impression something can happen between Emily’s supportive sister April ( whose tragic accident is the beginning of entire series ) and charm in kilt a.k.a. Mitch, I got so excited!

April finally raised her daughter Caitlin alone, who is about to graduate and leave for the college. She already gets stressed because Caitlin’s douchebag father who was never in the picture plans to reconnect with her daughter. And her decision to sell the house and move an apartment closer to her work place idea was not taken well by Caitlin. April has to deal with her silent treatment.

And Mitch… hottest gym teacher of the town is helpful enough for her house renovations in exchange a quick favor: she has to act like Mitch’s girlfriend during his grandparents’ anniversary because he’s sick of his family’s interrogation about his personal life and he wants to prove them he can be in a serious relationship like smart, mature, strong woman like her.

But when their pretending game gets out of control and what if they don’t want to pretend anymore!

Well, April is scared: she’s living secluded life, single mother, giving up everything for so long, a little mundane, always responsible one as Mitch picks up women at bars, having too many flings, easy going, flirty, sarcastic, ten years younger than him.

She may risk so much by having relationship with him. Could she live her comfort zone ? Could she be his girlfriend under prying eyes of townies?

Overall: Well- Met is still my most favorite book of the series, but I loved this one more than second book. Thankfully Emily, Stacey, Simon and Daniel stated as supporting characters. Because in my opinion, second book’s only problem was we read about two couples at the same time. There was not much differentiation between MCs and supporting characters.

I’m so happy this book only concentrated on April and Mitch’s blossoming romance. Both of them were amazing. I already loved two of them from the previous books so I’m happy to see they ended up together.

I wish the story narrated by both April and Mitch. I would truly enjoy to read his perspective, how he started to fall for April, how he dealt with his parents’ criticism about his life choices. From the beginning of the series, he was one of my favorite characters so I would love to spend more time in his head!

Anyways, it was still feel good and extra swoon worthy read and it was amazing to return back to Renaissance Faire!

Special thanks to NetGalley and Berkley Publishing for sharing this amazing digital reviewer copy with me in exchange my honest opinions.
Profile Image for ✨ A ✨ .
432 reviews1,792 followers
Want to read
October 13, 2021
This is going to be the best one in the series, I just know Mitch and April are going to bring it!

thank you to berkley for providing me with an e-arc for review
Profile Image for Samantha.
441 reviews16.7k followers
July 23, 2021
3.5 stars

Tropes/themes: fake dating; single mom; age gap (older woman/younger man); himbo man; social anxiety

I’ve been looking forward to this book since the first book in this companion series came out and this romance was teased. Sadly, it didn’t quite live up to how much I adored book 1. With the fake dating trope, I think they got together too soon and then a lot of the book was mostly our main character being really avoidant and commitment phobic and not using her words. I did still pull for them though and wanted them to work out even though she was being a little too emotionally unavailable for my liking. I also wish her personal arc and development was a little better as it felt a bit half baked to me.

One side note that I love about this series is none of the characters have a happily ever after that features having kids or hinting that they will have kids. Multiple character discuss being child free and that’s something you don’t see a lot in romance.

I still plan to continue with this series if Jen DeLuca keeps writing books in this world.
Profile Image for Chelsea (chelseadolling reads).
1,479 reviews19.5k followers
July 13, 2021
2.5 stars. I am so, so bummed that I didn't love this one. I had been anxiously awaiting Mitch & April's story after feeling hints of it in the previous two books, but this didn't hit the notes that I was hoping it would. Mitch & April had SO much chemistry going into this book, but from page one everything about the set up of their relationship and their interactions felt really forced. I also feel like all the side-characters just felt like shadows of the previous versions we met and as a whole this just really didn't work for me and I am so sad to leave the series feeling this way. I will probably check out more from Jen Deluca in the future, but this one was a miss for me. Womp :c
Profile Image for Christy.
3,918 reviews33k followers
September 28, 2021
3.5 stars

I was so looking forward to reading Well Matched as I've really enjoyed the first two books in this series. I was so here for reading about Mitch, and let me tell you, he did not disappoint. Mitch was by far the highlight of this book for me.

April is a single mom in Willow Creek and with her daughter ready for college, she's ready to move on. She needs a little help getting her house together to sell and Mitch is there to help her. He just needs a little favor. A date to a family event. What starts as fake dating turns into very real feelings for them both, even though April is hellbent on denying hers.

April is ten years older than Mitch and she won't let him forget it. I love a good age gap, but come on... 30 and 40 isn't so controversial. I felt like it was brought up way too much. I don't mean to harp on April, but she really did drive me bonkers through so much of this book.

Though this was my least favorite of the series, there was still a lot to love about this one, like Mitch. It makes me nostalgic to go to the Ren Faire for a day trip and it was great catching up with so many of my favorite Willow Creek characters!
Profile Image for Danielle.
833 reviews452 followers
June 18, 2023
This was a steamy good read 🔥🔥🔥 Just the right amount of flirty frustration and banter to keep it entertaining and interesting. 😍❤️ Definitely predictable but definitely enjoyable 👍
Profile Image for Aoife - Bookish_Babbling.
316 reviews327 followers
May 20, 2022

Well Met was such a win for me, the sequel Well Played didn’t work quite as well & this story falls somewhere in between. I still love the small town vibes & RenFaire setting but despite my excitement over finally getting Mitch & April’s story after their flirty banter in earlier books - it wound up being a bit of a let down as I just couldn’t with April’s attitude and obliviousness to her daughter despite being lauded for her single parenting…am I being too harsh here? Mebbe 🤷

I may also have 👀 this reading it so closely/hot on the heels of another “fake dating” type book where the MCs had convos & info exchanges on page whereas I HOPE these happened off page here otherwise I didn’t get the impression these characters had really spent enough time together prior to this set up to play pretend 🤔 it just made me cringe rather than root for them…again I may be judging harshly by comparison and don’t get me wrong they have some very fun scenes remodeling & there is steam so enjoy all 😉

Other than these niggles it was a fun read, Mitch was a sweetheart and while much of his family didn’t seem to understand him those that show up at the end are absolute winners and I am looking forward to LuLu’s spin off book. What a lovely surprise as I honestly thought this might be our last visit to Willow Creek…gives me hope that we might yet get to circle back around and finish the series with post college Cait 🤗
All the cameos from the MCs of the earlier books were such a fun time, I particularly enjoyed the three muskateers meddling & make over 😆

Last minor niggle (promise) some formatting, italics, quotation marks or bold would have been nice to help distinguish text convos from rest. #nitpicking 😅


Pre-reading thoughts

Fake dating + highly anticipated match up of the series & a cute cover = shut up and take my 💰
*smashes pre-order button*

Plus it's releasing on my birthday - so extra lucky me 🥰
Excitement is deffo building 🤞🤞
Profile Image for Maditales.
581 reviews23.7k followers
August 10, 2022
this book was okay.

Mitch was pretty interesting and I actually felt really sympathetic for him especially when talking about his family. I enjoyed hearing about his passions in life and why he decided to become a teacher.
In the previous books he was just a cocky character but in this one he finally had a personality.

However April annoyed the shit out of me. I understand that she is a single mom and all the praise to her for raising such an amazing daughter but wow. Her plans post graduation of daughter are strict and honestly felt kind of heartless as well as self centred. I get that she wants to do now what she can instead of pushing everything she wants behind her daughter's needs. Really I do but I felt like there could have been a middle ground where she could have talked with her daughter too.

On the other hand, I loved her when she was just by herself and doing the things she does best and being independent. It was amazing to see a strong willing character in those scenes but sometimes it felt like there were 2 different Aprils in this book.

I did also get emotional a couple of times while reading this so plus points for that but overall some things were missing and there was a big focus on getting in a lot of tropes. I am just not a fan of that method

Profile Image for Chelsea.
316 reviews2,793 followers
July 11, 2021
Swoon! I’ve been waiting for Mitch’s story since book one and it did not disappoint! Fake dating, age gap, small town, these are all the tropes I love! This is kilt-wearing, gym teacher, fun guy Mitch’s and single mom, soon too be empty nester, big sister to Emily, April’s story. Dare I say, this is also almost grump/sunshine too? Yep. I dare.

I will forever adore this series simply because I’m a ren faire nerd through and through so not only am I getting a swoony small town romance but I get to feel like I’m back at the faire even when I can’t be. I really liked seeing the faire from the eyes of someone who doesn’t quite get it and still gets swept up in the magic. As someone with pretty bad social anxiety and very introverted, this was refreshing to read. I really related to how much April was worried about how she was being perceived all the time. Hello, social anxiety, my old friend. But it was wonderful to see April start to come out of her shell and of course Mitch is the perfect partner to help her do that. And Mitch’s family! They were the best (and worst). The relationship felt so balanced and I just love them.

Getting to see everyone in Willow Creek again is like a warm hug and I grin like an idiot every time I read one of these books. I picture my faire grounds every time and it just feels like home. Please let there be more!
Profile Image for Rachel  L.
1,868 reviews2,243 followers
December 30, 2022
3.5 stars

A cute romance about a high school coach and an older woman, single mother. This Well Met series is honestly so fun and I enjoy getting lost in some mindless entertainment while reading this series. And while I enjoyed this book a lot, I have a feeling I won’t remember much about it once time passes.
Profile Image for Fernwehwelten.
323 reviews212 followers
April 9, 2022
5 Sterne | Pluspunkte: Sympathische & nachvollziehbare Charaktere; toller Schreibstil; nicht zu viel „unnötiges“ Drama | Minuspunkte: Maximal, dass das Setting des Mittelaltermarkts zu kurz kam

Ich ärgere mich gerade darüber, dass ich diese Rezension nicht direkt nach Beenden des Buchs geschrieben habe, denn ich habe das Gefühl, dass ich meine Gedanken zur Geschichte in dem Moment besser zum Ausdruck gebracht hätte als jetzt 🙇🏼‍♀️ Denn jetzt sitze ich hier, starre auf den weißen Hintergrund meines Word-Dokuments und starte den x-ten Anlauf, um ENDLICH die richtigen Worte dafür zu finden, wie wunderbar ich dieses Buch fand. Jen DeLuca hat es einfach geschafft, Romance zu schreiben, wie ich sie mir wirklich öfter wünschen würde. Ohne allzu viel unnötiges Drama, aber dafür mit umso mehr Herz und vor allem nachvollziehbaren Charakteren. 🥰

Wie sich manch einer von euch vielleicht erinnert, mochte ich schon den Auftakt der „A History of Us“-Reihe unheimlich gern. Band 2 war dann in meinen Augen zwar schwächer, aber noch immer süße Unterhaltung. Und dieser dritte Teil nun? Der hat sich einfach ohne zu fragen und gänzlich überraschend zu meinem neuen Favoriten entwickelt. „Nur Drei kleine Worte“ erzählt die Geschichte der vierzigjährigen April, welche eigentlich nur zum Schein mit dem zehn Jahre jüngeren Mitch anbändelt, und bringt dabei so viel Humor, Emotion und Ehrlichkeit mit sich, dass ich zwischendurch gar nicht mehr wusste, wo mir der Kopf steht. Für mich war April trotz (oder wegen) ihrer Eigenarten eine der besten Protagonistinnen seit langem. So nachvollziehbar, so ehrlich, so unperfekt und umso nahbarer. Ich weiß schon jetzt, dass ihre Geschichte eine ist, zu der ich nochmal zurückkehren werde. Vielleicht ist es sogar ein Buch, das ich auf Bookbeat permanent gedownloadet lasse, weil es zum Wohlfühlen ist, weil es süchtig macht, weil es Spaß gemacht hat.
Einziger, winziger Kritikpunkt: Der Mittelaltermarkt als Setting fiel ziemlich hinten weg. Für mich war das nicht schlimm, aber Leser*innen, die an der Reihe besonders aufgrund dieses Feelings interessiert sind, könnten diesbezüglich enttäuscht werden.
Profile Image for  Teodora .
331 reviews1,772 followers
November 26, 2022
4.25/5 ⭐

May I say this – thank GOD this is about Mitch because the bloke needs more appreciation!
A handsome guy with a funny personality, a dirty mind, easy-going smile and the ability to be an amazing friend? Uh, yes please and thank you!
AND also April? Oh, bring the sass on, Mama!
Profile Image for Sylvie .
686 reviews960 followers
December 27, 2021
To be completely honest, I was expecting more from this book.


This is probably the cutest out of all the covers and it's blue.😍😍😭😭 And Mitch is wearing his kilt, I'm deceased.

Can't wait to see what April & Mitch have in store for us.
And I have a feeling this will be the most humorous out of 3, because their exchange of banters were always chaotically funny, even if we only got to see that in only a few pages.
Profile Image for Hannah B..
881 reviews1,315 followers
November 29, 2021
✨Well I had a terrible time.✨

April puts the wench in tavern wench. Her favorite words are “don’t like” “wasn’t like me” “shouldn’t have” “I hadn’t been” “isn’t me” “never” “no” “couldn’t like me” “wouldn’t want me” “can’t love me”—casting such a negative cloud over this entire book. She was just! so! negative! She bit people’s heads off for the smallest things and assumptions and was just so goddamn persnickety. She made every small thing a thing thing.

This is honestly close to 1.5⭐️ bc I was losing my mind with how wishy washy and confusing April and her many ✨emotions✨ were. She would say she had all these feelings but then never share them with the class. It’s first person narration! It’s not hard to share! By the end when she was so hesitant to be with Mitch, I truly didn’t know why! And then she wouldn’t tell him why so I was doubly confused! I had guesses but she never even developed those thoughts fully, let alone anything else she did in this godforsaken book.

The sex is well…it’s there. It’s not very explicit and she orgasms in about 2 seconds. We barely get any useful description of Mitch (or the sex) and there’s maybe a bit of dirty talk? Cock is the extent of the *spicy* language. There were multiple scenes but they left you wanting more rather than being satisfied. Bare minimum here if we’re being honest. They also bang it out around 40% I’d say and then it happens throughout.

Neither April nor I know anything about Mitch as a human being and that didn’t change from start to finish. He’s a very neglected character in this book which is rather unfortunate for a main character. I know more about his body than about him as a person.

I want to say April acted like a five-year-old during most of this book but that’s an insult to five-year-olds everywhere. She wouldn’t know how to have a conversation if Oprah was dangling her over the burning flames of hell. At one point she was like “oh we can’t be seen together in public how dare you call us “we” in our friend group chat.” Obviously, their “fake” relationship was very much in the public realm and they were fooling nobody. The reason for fake dating is so that people know! She acted like showing up in Mitch’s red pickup outside the bar would burn it down. I assure you, if Bella Swan had the mental fortitude to show up to HIGH SCHOOL in Edward Cullen’s Volvo causing quite the stir, then April could handle the chatter of a small town bar. It wouldn’t even be bad chatter! Literally just “whoa congrats.”

She was weirdly obsessed with gossip and people knowing her business but it was never explained why she was so stressed about them all finding out. There’s this part where she overhears a conversation that’s not even about her and takes it super personally. It was about being “mundane” and she was totally projecting. Raise your hand if you’ve ever been personally victimized by the word mundane. No one? Yeah that checks out.

She’s a very self-absorbed character who was TERRIBLE to poor Mitch. She made him second guess their relationship and kept trying to hide him but never talked to him about how/why she was feeling/doing that shit. He deserves so much more than a toddler stuck in the middle of a midlife crisis. The shit she said to him was low and nearly unforgivable in my book because it was coupled with her shitty, shitty actions.

She also could NOT stop saying how old she was and how much of a slut he was. He was honestly never not shown in a light that didn’t emphasize his body/sexual prowess. I said it before, we know more about his body than him. That’s sad to me. There was so much more to be done with his character, but unfortunately he got stuck with April the steamroller extra from Bob the Builder.

⭐️⭐️/5 🌶🌶🌶/5

P.S. there was also a weird part where she was embarrassed about yawning in front of him? And about dozing off in his arms? Because she’s so ancient? He was just nose deep in your punani honey I think you can sleep on his chest 😩

“I was practically vibrating with tension
could picture Marjorie, Caroline, everyone from bookclub and everyone who'd ever gossiped about the single mother who lived on the block, all of them looking out their windows. Clucking their tongues over how I was dressed, raising their eyebrows when that bright red truck showed up again in my driveway.” — I promise nobody is thinking about you. They’re just happy you got laid! It was just cupcakes!

“He passed me the mug of coffee he'd pour cream in. He didn't ask if he'd gotten it right; he just knew. On anyone else that confidence would be irritating.” — it’s just fucking coffee 😭 why is that confidence in which to be irritated about normally? Why even think that? Negative Nancy motherfucker
Profile Image for Mara.
1,638 reviews3,890 followers
September 7, 2021
Woohoo, we finally get April & Mitch's book! I'm a sucker for a grump/sunshine trope, and especially when the heroine is the grump & the hero is the sunshine, and I think this was further enhanced by having the heroine being ~10 years older than the hero. This is a lot about April transitioning from one season of her life to another, and how her preconceptions about Mitch are colored more by her own hang ups than who he actually is. It also has some interesting conversation about kids in a HEA. Overall, this was a book that had a lot of flipping of tropes or character conflicts traditionally associated with the other gender, and I think that took the book to the next level for me.
Profile Image for Helen Power.
Author 10 books538 followers
September 26, 2021
TLDR: This is a quick read for fans of the fake girlfriend trope, but don’t go into it expecting the usual Willow Creek Renaissance Faire shenanigans.

My Review

This book is marketed as a rom com, but it's much closer to women's fiction, (but with that expected Happy Ever After that we expect in romance novels). While the book is broadly about April finding love, she's also finding a renewed purpose in life and figuring out who she really is in the process. While the pacing of this book is quite slow, the introspection gives us the opportunity to really get into April’s head and dive into the life she’s built for herself in Willow Creek. Her daughter is graduating from high school, and then she’ll be going off to university. April should be ecstatic--she’s wanted nothing more than to sell her house and leave this town behind. But this summer, she’s forced to confront what she really wants, and the true reason why Willow Creek has never truly felt like home, which has nothing to do with the town or its residents and everything to do with her and her outlook on life.

The atmosphere of this book is tinged with melancholy. April is a forty-year-old divorcee. She broke up with her husband shortly after her eighteen-year-old daughter, Caitlin, was born, and she hasn’t had any serious relationships since. They moved to Willow Creek, but April resisted setting down roots. She has her book club, and her sister recently moved to town (Read Well Met for that epic tale!), but she doesn’t have much else tying her to this location. Even Mitch, who was delightful and cheery in the previous two books, seems a lot more subdued in this novel. He’s still got charisma, but it isn’t enough to make the contents of the book match its cheery blue cover.

Like the previous two books in this series, DeLuca has taken a common trope as the basis for this story. Mitch Malone asks April to be his fake girlfriend for a family gathering, and a lot of the expected clichés come out of it (sharing a bedroom--and a bed, etc.). My favourite part of the previous two books in this series--and subsequently this book--is the parts set at the Renaissance Faire. Unfortunately, the first half of this book is set before the faire rolls into town, and those chapters lacked the colour and flavour that I have come to love--and expect--in this series. Once the Faire does start, it’s still not quite the same, because the book is from April’s point of view, and she’s never been a huge fan of the Faire (or anything requiring any kind of participation or fun). DeLuca does make up for this later on in the book, but I was hoping for more than a few chapters set at the Renaissance Faire. It’s what makes this series truly unique, and it otherwise is just a rehashing of old tropes without a fresh new take on them. Honestly, the scenes with Captain Blackthorne (the first book’s hero’s alter ego), made me nostalgic for the fun and renaissance faire-filled goodness from the first instalment in the series.

All in all, this is a quick read for fans of the fake girlfriend trope, but don’t go into it expecting the usual Willow Creek Renaissance Faire shenanigans.

*Thank you to the publisher, Netgalley, and the author for the ebook to review*
This review appeared first on https://powerlibrarian.wordpress.com/
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Profile Image for h o l l i s .
2,476 reviews1,894 followers
November 17, 2021
I enjoyed Mitch and am sad he didn't quite get the great book I had hoped for him because overall I struggled with April in this one and she really brought things down for me. I did understand some of her baggage but, for someone who kept trumpeting about how she was forty forty forty did everyone know she was forty, she wasn't all the self-aware mature adult you would expect for someone hyper focused on her age.

I really have nothing else to say about this and more and more the only thing that stands out about this series is the focus on the Ren Faire.

Profile Image for Larry H.
2,514 reviews29.5k followers
January 26, 2022
4.5 stars

Fake dating and a hot man in a kilt? Yes, please!

In Well Matched , Jen DeLuca’s third book after Well Met and Well Played , April is a single mom who has always done it all by herself. With her daughter ready to head to college, April is planning to sell their house, move away from Willow Creek, and live life for herself for once.

First, she’ll need help with some home improvement projects, which her friend Mitch volunteers to handle. But Mitch requires a favor in return—he needs a date to a family dinner, so he won't have to endure the disapproval and criticism from his family about just being a gym teacher. April agrees to help. And when the family dinner turns into a weekend she also agrees, and of course, there’s only one bed in the hotel…

As the chemistry between them grows and it becomes difficult to determine if they’re still in a fake relationship or heading toward a real one, April is still moving forward with her plans to sell her house and move away. But where does that leave things with Mitch?

When she agrees to volunteer at the local Renaissance Faire, where each summer Mitch wears a kilt and not much else, she starts to wonder where she fits in, and whether the place she’s been so determined to leave is actually the place she really wants to be.

I really enjoy this series, and this is definitely my favorite of the three books. The chemistry between April and Mitch (despite all of the drama April creates) is hot, and I love the recurring supporting characters that appear in all the books. Plus, I love the Renaissance Faire setting!

Even though I meant to get to this last year, this was a great first book to start 2022!

Check out my list of the best books I read in 2021 at https://itseithersadnessoreuphoria.blogspot.com/2022/01/the-best-books-i-read-in-2021.html.

See all of my reviews at itseithersadnessoreuphoria.blogspot.com.

Follow me on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/the.bookishworld.of.yrralh/.
Profile Image for Kezia Duah.
392 reviews344 followers
October 29, 2021
“Oh April, I’ve been gone for you for months, ever since you yelled at my grandma.”—and that my friends, is how you do it.

Fake dating and one bed trope?! Oh DeLuca, you rascal!

So far, this series has been really cute but still pretty average. I thought this was going to be really good and probably the best out of the series, but it ended up just being okay. Still really cute though. There is just this pattern. Boy and girl hookup, something happens, they “break up”, they realize that they fucked up, and they get back together. Wow, I just summed up all three books.

I don’t usually feel this way, but Mitch was such a dateable character. You always read about these male characters who are so unrealistically perfect, and then there is Mitch, who feels like a guy I could honestly just be friends with. I love it!

April and her daughter’s relationship was my favorite part of the book. I’m gonna start telling my mom she’s my favorite mom and act like I didn’t steal it straight from a book.

There’s a fourth book? Who’s love life are we digging into next? Don’t tell me it’s Kaitlyn lol.
Profile Image for b.andherbooks.
2,127 reviews981 followers
June 17, 2021
I have been eagerly awaiting to meet Mitch's match since we got at glimpse at his glorious knees in that kilt in Well Met. I was also delighted to see the slow build up in tension between Mitch and April in the previous books, and overall Well Matched delivered.

Mitch is such a babe, and he treats April so kindly, and he's so into her. I loved seeing grumpy April realize she was pre-judging Mitch based on his looks and reputation, not his deeds or actions. Seeing how her pre-judgment is the same as the way his family treats him because of his career was also deftly handled. And dang, Mitch delivers the sexy goods to April when she finally gives in to his obvious care for her.

Besides the romance, April is experiencing a lot of life changes, with her daughter leaving for college, and trying to figure out if she should indeed move to a bigger city and a condo, or stay with the community she's built. I liked how it played out.

So much fun, what a grand read.

Actual rating 4.5 stars, I would have loved to see Mitch's POV in this story, but that isn't the author's choice and that was fine and it worked! I am just greedy.
Profile Image for Apoorva .
166 reviews183 followers
Want to read
September 4, 2020
Well Played is coming out this month and.......third book is about Mitch and April?! Who killed me and sent me to heaven?
2021 is the year of all my anticipated releases with this one and The Heart Principle coming out. It's going to be my year, I feel it 🤞🏻😂
Profile Image for Hilly &#x1f390;.
709 reviews1,325 followers
July 8, 2022
I spent an entire month reading this series only and now I have no idea if I can read other books anymore. This series literally took over my entire life for weeks, to the point I started neglecting all the important stuff I had to do [this one book being probably the main culprit]. Jen DeLuca, what have you done to me?

This novel honestly wasn't even what I was expecting from April and Mitch. I definitely liked the teasers about them in the previous books way more than this entire book about them. April is obsessed with her age and worries too much about what people in the small town think and say about her. The pacing is very uneven: the beginning is rushed and instalovey, then it slows down until the third act conflict happens–one I didn't need at all because the relationship between April and Mitch was already as perfect as it could be. Might I add that friends-to-lovers (especially friends-with-benefits) isn't really my trope of choice? But dammit, I loved this unconditionally. I ate it up like there's no tomorrow.

I freaking loved Mitch and April together. I also fell a little for Mitch as I got to know him better in this book. Their romance was so cheesy and cute I'm dying. I can guarantee I will forever romanticize these two in my head in the months to come until I won't remember how the book really was lol. The thing is, they weren't only cute together, they also had that amazing tension that makes you combust even if you're just a mere spectator. SEXY TIMES IN THIS ARE APPROVED. I'll never stop thinking and crying and sweat and scream about CHAPTER NINETEEN (you're so welcome!).

This year I have reached my adult romance 2.0 era and I cannot seem to want to exit it anytime soon. I'm perfectly okay with it. If you're reading this and you're a romance expert, please recommend me an author that writes like JD, I'll impatiently wait 😭
Profile Image for ♥Rachel♥.
1,909 reviews852 followers
October 22, 2021
3.5 Stars

Loved Mitch and this was unexpectedly hot in places, but April was frustrating, and not only with Mitch.

I can understand being a little hesitant about the age difference, especially if she was worried about Mitch eventually wanting kids, but ten years isn’t hardly anything especially when he’s thirty and you’re forty. I didn’t like that April was so closed off, even with her family and the other women she was in book club with. And come on, you can’t stock beer in the fridge for the guy helping you renovate your house? That really got to me because it was such a small thing to show gratefulness and she wouldn’t do it.

I sounds like I didn’t enjoy the story at all, but there was a lot to like as well: Mitch and April in a fake romance that was clearly more, and they were deliciously hot together! Fun times at the Ren Faire, seeing Emily and Simon happy and in love.

A copy was kindly provided by Berkley in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Olive Fellows (abookolive).
613 reviews5,001 followers
September 9, 2021
The most lightly-plotted of the Well Met romance trilogy, Well Matched is April and Mitch's story.

April Parker is the older sister of Emily (the main character of the first book). She's a single mom to high school senior Caitlin with whom she was in a car accident a few years prior (the catalyst for Emily moving into town in the first book). She's become friends with Mitch Malone by way of her Renaissance Faire-volunteering sister since Mitch is a volunteer there. Every year he dons his famous (or is it infamous?) kilt and assumes a Scottish accent, participating in mock fight scenes for attendees of the Faire and making the crowds drool over his physique (perhaps book 3.5 in the series could be called Well Built? teehee).

April and Mitch have a bit of a connection prior to the events of this book (as evidenced by the end of book 2), but they both seem to be under the impression that the other person would never go for them.

April is around a decade older than Mitch and is done having kids. She also has serious walls built up around her heart since her daughter's father, her ex-husband, walked out on them before they even had a chance to be a family. She was kind of like Lorelai Gilmore coming to this small Maryland town when her daughter was little - April is beautiful, smart, funny, and with a daughter that the town loves, but she's infinitely more guarded than bubbly Lorelai. Meanwhile Mitch is the town stud and practically oozes confidence, but it turns out he's far less sure of himself than he seems.

So when Mitch proposes the idea to April that she pose as his girlfriend at a family function so that he'll seem stable and put-together, it seems like their romance could only ever be for show. But as time goes on and the two spend more time together, the line between fiction and reality becomes blurred.

I was primed to enjoy this one because of how much I loved the first two books in the series (click here to hear me talk about those two books over on Booktube), but I have to admit this series got progressively weaker as it went along, plot-wise. This one's story was pretty hum-drum and I ended up reading about more home improvement projects than I ever needed to in a book.

But what Jen DeLuca does well (heh) in these books is character development. April and Mitch are two fully-realized people with complicated backstories and authentic reactions to things that remind them of past hurts. They are who they are, but they want to grow, and actually show growth. I loved them both so much, I was willing to read about the most boring, yet painful home improvement project on the planet: painting. (I painted my husband's office earlier this year and I'm still not over the trauma.)

If you've loved the series this far - if you love Mitch and April and want the satisfaction of seeing them get their happily ever after - you'll want to read this. To anyone new to this series, I'd say you're good sticking with the first book then moving on to greener pastures.
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