MUST LOVE BABIES

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A confirmed bachelor meets an attractive woman and gains temporary custody of his nephew, all in the same night.

Brant Wylder is visiting Misty Bottoms, Georgia, for a wedding; while in town, he intends to scout a new location for the custom body shop he owns with his brothers. At the reception, he connects with Molly Stiles, owner of the local wedding dress boutique. Although they share a moonlit dance and a sexy kiss, he’s called away by a family emergency. His sister has been in an accident nearby, and Brant ends up with custody of Jax, his 7-month-old nephew. The novel does not shy away from accurate and detailed descriptions of life with a baby. Austin (Picture Perfect Wedding, 2016, etc.) is a talented writer with a gift for capturing the charming mood of this idealized, small, white town. When Brant returns to the B&B where he'd been staying with Jax in tow, everyone chips in to help, even though he’s a newcomer, which at times strains even the most elastic definition of Southern hospitality. The novel explores Molly’s distrust of men, based on her parents’ failed marriage and a disloyal ex-boyfriend, but her rigid commitment to a list of life goals she made when she was 13 never seems believable. Austin’s exploration of Brant is far more dynamic and interesting, focusing on his relationships with his family, his drive to succeed, and his growing affection for Jax. The plot unspools with very little conflict, and Brant’s relationship with Jax influences and changes him more than his low-heat romance with Molly.

The romance takes a back seat in this sweet but uneventful story of a man who changes his ideas about family, love, and marriage in the face of unexpected responsibilities.

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