What are Friends For? by Judy Rogers

Story: 9
Presentation: 9
Total: 18
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

Blurb: When Thomas James Dooley, the quintessential knight errant, learns his best friend Cass Vojek is pregnant, he’ll do whatever it takes to protect her reputation. Proposing a celibate marriage isn’t a sacrifice but a necessary solution.
Believing marriage will help Dooley obtain a coveted position at work, heartbroken Cass agrees. But once their vows are spoken, she begins to see the man her childhood playmate has become. For Dooley, living with Cass awakens unimagined desire. Celibacy becomes an exercise in torture. A forbidden night of passion changes everything, and the pair find themselves thrown into a whirlwind of conflicting emotions.

On the brink of turning their pretend marriage into a true one, the unexpected arrival of the baby’s father not only threatens their relationship but also the very foundation of their life-long friendship. Challenged by complications, Cass and Dooley must discover the ultimate answer to, what are friends for?

Review: I loved it!!! This is a story to read and re-read.

My attention was grabbed from the very first when Cass is telling her best friend that she is having a baby and the father left town when she told him. Her best friend, knight in shining armor Dooley, suggests they get married. This will help him get a promotion because his boss thinks married men are more dependable.

I found myself chuckling, if not outright guffawing, all the way through the story. I could not put it down -- well actually get up from the computer -- until I finished the story.The entire book is full of down-right hilarious situations and when I least expected them.

The bachelor party for Dooley is typical. Instead of hiring a stripper, Dooley's good buddies arrange for an over 70s dance class from the nursing home to perform in their short shorts, high heels and halter tops. For the finale, the white haired lead dancer sits in Dooley's lap and whispers suggestive comments.

This really created a visual picture for me of wrinkled, skinny, flabby old ladies. Ms. Rogers has a fantastic sense of humor which shows quite ofter in this story.

This was a truly entertaining story from beginning to the happy conclusion. It is not a fantasy romance in an exotic setting. Just everyday middle class working people in USA. It is not a hot and steamy love story, but it is descriptive enough to convince the reader that Cass and Dooley develop love for each other that goes beyond the friendship they have had since they were children. The platonic marriage of convenience they plan does not last long.

I liked the main characters because their personalities were believable with human strengths and weaknesses. The supporting characters were also developed into more than just names on pages.

This is definitely a keeper. I will definitely be looking for more of Ms. Rogers' truly entertaining stories.

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