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Matrimony meets mayhem in a modern British romcom about a young woman charged with pulling off the biggest aristocratic wedding of the year––and the misadventures that ensue. Sophie Breeze is a brilliant bridesmaid. So brilliant, in fact, that she’s made it her full-time job. As a professional bridesmaid, Sophie is hired by London brides to be their right-hand woman, posing Matrimony meets mayhem in a modern British romcom about a young woman charged with pulling off the biggest aristocratic wedding of the year––and the misadventures that ensue. Sophie Breeze is a brilliant bridesmaid. So brilliant, in fact, that she’s made it her full-time job. As a professional bridesmaid, Sophie is hired by London brides to be their right-hand woman, posing as a friend but working behind the scenes to help plan the perfect wedding and ensure their big day goes off without a hitch. When she’s hired by Lady Victoria Swann––a former model and “It Girl" of 1970’s London; now the Marchioness of Meade––for the society wedding of the year, it should be a chance for Sophie to prove just how talented she is. Of course, it’s not ideal that the bride, Lady Victoria’s daughter, Cordelia, is an absolute diva and determined to make Sophie’s life a nightmare. It’s also a bit inconvenient that Sophie finds herself drawn to Cordelia’s posh older brother, who is absolutely off limits. But when a rival society wedding is announced for the very same day, things start to get…well, complicated. Can Sophie pull off the biggest challenge of her career––execute a high-profile gala for four hundred and fifty guests in record time, win over a reluctant bride, and catch the eye of handsome Lord Swann––all while keeping her true identity a secret, and her dignity intact? Heartwarming and hilarious, The Secret Bridesmaid celebrates the joys (and foibles) of weddings, the nuances of female friendship, and the redeeming power of love in its many unexpected forms.


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Matrimony meets mayhem in a modern British romcom about a young woman charged with pulling off the biggest aristocratic wedding of the year––and the misadventures that ensue. Sophie Breeze is a brilliant bridesmaid. So brilliant, in fact, that she’s made it her full-time job. As a professional bridesmaid, Sophie is hired by London brides to be their right-hand woman, posing Matrimony meets mayhem in a modern British romcom about a young woman charged with pulling off the biggest aristocratic wedding of the year––and the misadventures that ensue. Sophie Breeze is a brilliant bridesmaid. So brilliant, in fact, that she’s made it her full-time job. As a professional bridesmaid, Sophie is hired by London brides to be their right-hand woman, posing as a friend but working behind the scenes to help plan the perfect wedding and ensure their big day goes off without a hitch. When she’s hired by Lady Victoria Swann––a former model and “It Girl" of 1970’s London; now the Marchioness of Meade––for the society wedding of the year, it should be a chance for Sophie to prove just how talented she is. Of course, it’s not ideal that the bride, Lady Victoria’s daughter, Cordelia, is an absolute diva and determined to make Sophie’s life a nightmare. It’s also a bit inconvenient that Sophie finds herself drawn to Cordelia’s posh older brother, who is absolutely off limits. But when a rival society wedding is announced for the very same day, things start to get…well, complicated. Can Sophie pull off the biggest challenge of her career––execute a high-profile gala for four hundred and fifty guests in record time, win over a reluctant bride, and catch the eye of handsome Lord Swann––all while keeping her true identity a secret, and her dignity intact? Heartwarming and hilarious, The Secret Bridesmaid celebrates the joys (and foibles) of weddings, the nuances of female friendship, and the redeeming power of love in its many unexpected forms.

30 review for The Secret Bridesmaid

  1. 5 out of 5

    Irena BookDustMagic

    Dear friends, now I present you: My favourite book of 2021!!! (Imagine me happy screaming here.) The Secret Bridesmaid was a buddy read with my friend Amanda. We both wanted to read something light and funny this time, and this hilariously entertaining novel was a perfect choice. I think neither of us imagined we would love it so much. The writing was up my league. So easy to follow, humorous and just purely enjoyable. I hope Katy Birchall will continue to write adult fiction because she nailed it! T Dear friends, now I present you: My favourite book of 2021!!! (Imagine me happy screaming here.) The Secret Bridesmaid was a buddy read with my friend Amanda. We both wanted to read something light and funny this time, and this hilariously entertaining novel was a perfect choice. I think neither of us imagined we would love it so much. The writing was up my league. So easy to follow, humorous and just purely enjoyable. I hope Katy Birchall will continue to write adult fiction because she nailed it! The book is written in first person, following Sophie's POV, and it also contains emails and messages between clients of Sophie, customers service etcetera. Those bonus pages reminded me of Sophie Kinsella's early work, and I welcomed it wholeheartedly. The characters were impressive and the fact that even 7 days after finishing the book I still remember all of their names, including that douchebag Daniel, says a lot, as I often don't recall the names even while I'm still reading stories. Cordelia was my absolutely favourite. I loved how upfront she was and I feel like her and me would be great friends, if we came from the same society (plus if she was, you know, NOT FICTIONAL). We have lots in common. Sophie was great narrator and so devoted to her job, clients and people around her. But most of all, she was funny and the one with good intentions, always. And Tom... Can I just say he was swoon worthy and be done with it? Ok, ok, I will also say that I don't remember the last time I liked love interest sooooo much. In the end, I will say once more that this is the best book that I have read this year and I hope it will be enough to convince you to read it too.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Nilufer Ozmekik

    Well, this is quite entertaining, laugh loud chic lit meets women fiction with romance vibes! It’s a brilliant introduction to the bridezillas’ world: when the wedding day imminently approaches and the brides are having panic attacks, firing wedding planners, cursing their loved ones, getting totally out of control, who they are gonna call? Of course:Olivia Pope meets Ray Donovan kind of great wedding fixer/ contract bridesmaid named Sophie Breeze! She’s the solution of the entire wedding crisi Well, this is quite entertaining, laugh loud chic lit meets women fiction with romance vibes! It’s a brilliant introduction to the bridezillas’ world: when the wedding day imminently approaches and the brides are having panic attacks, firing wedding planners, cursing their loved ones, getting totally out of control, who they are gonna call? Of course:Olivia Pope meets Ray Donovan kind of great wedding fixer/ contract bridesmaid named Sophie Breeze! She’s the solution of the entire wedding crisis! She listens to the brides patiently without commenting about their awkward wedding theme choices or weirdest requests they made: just like a genie in a bottle she does everything she can to make their dreamy day come true! But unfortunately her magical abilities to make every woman’s special day fulfilled, doesn’t work for herself! She still suffers from heartbreak in her own life. Her love of her life she’s dated for 8 years found someone else shortly after he dumbed her and now this douchebag sends her his wedding invitation. So Sophie has to concentrate her career not to suffer more from heartbreak! Thankfully she gets an offer she cannot refuse : 70’s it girl of London and today’s Marchioness of Meade - Lady Victoria’s daughter Cordelia is about to tie the knot and she has to prove she’s capable of organizing this one of challenging wedding ceremony of the century! But Cordelia seems like she’s not happy with her mother’s decision to hire her and she can do anything to sabotage her works, telling Sophie is escort, a con artist to their close circle. But Sophie never runs away from challenges even though she’s met the most irritating bridezilla who is adamant to turn her life into hell with her nonstop emotional tantrums! And bride’s very charismatic, sexy brother Tom is also flirting with her. She liked his attention but she is also aware this could jeopardize her identity and her job. But it seems like Cordelia is not daughter of Lilith and Lucifer. As they spend so much time together and open up about their secrets, Sophie realizes they start to bond a real friendship so she doesn’t need to pretend they’re friends but a big secret emerges about the the past, things get more complicated which will test the loyalty of true friendships! Overall: this book reminded me of Kevin Hart’s Wedding Ringer: at that movie: Hart has a company to offer services for groom who needs best man. So this book is quite better and more sentimental version of the idea. Some parts are brilliantly funny and I love to read blooming friendship of Cordelia and Sophie and I love the brilliant ways how Sophie uses to solve bride’s problems! I’m giving four elite, wedding ceremony, entertaining, unputdownable stars! I’m so happy this book put the author on my radar! I’m looking forward to read more works of her. Special thanks to NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press/ St. Martin’s Griffin for sharing this amazing digital reviewer copy with me in exchange my honest opinions.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Kaceey

    Every bride needs a bridesmaid to help them navigate the most important day of their lives. But what if you need a little more help than what your friends or family can do? What if you really need professional assistance? But don’t want to give up control of your wedding. Enter Sophie Breeze, a professional bridesmaid. Under the disguise of a friend or long lost relative she will play the role of a bridesmaid while coordinating everything behind the scenes to make sure the wedding flows seamlessly Every bride needs a bridesmaid to help them navigate the most important day of their lives. But what if you need a little more help than what your friends or family can do? What if you really need professional assistance? But don’t want to give up control of your wedding. Enter Sophie Breeze, a professional bridesmaid. Under the disguise of a friend or long lost relative she will play the role of a bridesmaid while coordinating everything behind the scenes to make sure the wedding flows seamlessly. Sophie loves her job and all her brides and their (sometimes ridiculous) requests. But when she is hired for a high society wedding she may have finally met her match. This was a fun light rom com that had me chuckling at what Sophie had to endure to make sure her weddings go off without a hitch. I listened to the audio version and the narrator did an amazing job with the characters. I flew through this audio quickly over a (rom com) weekend! Hope you enjoy this one too! Posted to: https://books-are-a-girls-best-friend...

  4. 4 out of 5

    Katie B

    Based on the pretty book cover and after reading the publisher synopsis, I had a hunch this book would be a fun and light read. And guess what? I was correct. It was exactly the type of book I needed to help pick me up out of the doldrums. Sophie Breeze is a professional bridesmaid for hire. She's not exactly a wedding planner but she does provide much needed assistance to the bride as she plans her special day. As it would be embarrassing if people found out you paid someone to be in your bridal Based on the pretty book cover and after reading the publisher synopsis, I had a hunch this book would be a fun and light read. And guess what? I was correct. It was exactly the type of book I needed to help pick me up out of the doldrums. Sophie Breeze is a professional bridesmaid for hire. She's not exactly a wedding planner but she does provide much needed assistance to the bride as she plans her special day. As it would be embarrassing if people found out you paid someone to be in your bridal party, the bride and Sophie keep that secret amongst themselves and instead pretend they have been friends for years. Sophie has been hired by Lady Victoria Swann for the society wedding of the year. Lady Victoria's daughter, Cordelia, is getting married and the nuptials are guaranteed to get a lot of press. Cordelia however, is dead set against hiring Sophie and sets out to make her job as miserable as possible so she will quit. Is Sophie up for a challenge? Also, is the saying "always a bridesmaid, never a bride" true? I think the book is best classified as chick lit as it is full of humor and there's some romance. The page count is not quite 400 pages and perhaps a few things here and there could have been trimmed down but for the most part is was a quick read. Sophie is one of those great at just about everything type characters but she didn't come across as annoying. She's a likeable character and you root for her to successfully pull off Cordelia's wedding. As for Sophie's love life, I enjoyed watching that develop as well. I'll admit I had a big, cheesy grin on my face when I finished this book. Always nice to end a book on a positive note. If you are a fan of books written by Sophie Kinsella, you should check this one out. I won a free advance copy of this book in a Goodreads giveaway. All thoughts expressed are my honest opinion.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Lucy

    Such a fun story! Sophie is clever, loyal, and a lifesaver to many. She's a professional bridesmaid who will do anything for the brides, and often ends up in awkward situations. The myriad of people she interacts with on a daily basis and the wedding duties she's assigned keep her life hectic and chaotic. Add to that her family, an ex-boyfriend, and a new love interest! Needless to say, Sophie's life is one adventure (or misadventure) after another. This is the author's first adult novel. It's a Such a fun story! Sophie is clever, loyal, and a lifesaver to many. She's a professional bridesmaid who will do anything for the brides, and often ends up in awkward situations. The myriad of people she interacts with on a daily basis and the wedding duties she's assigned keep her life hectic and chaotic. Add to that her family, an ex-boyfriend, and a new love interest! Needless to say, Sophie's life is one adventure (or misadventure) after another. This is the author's first adult novel. It's a funny, witty, and entertaining story about love and friendship. I can't wait for her next book 😃.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Madison Mary

    "As a professional bridesmaid, I'm merely there to aid the bride in producing her vision for the day and be a helping hand to her. I'm not there to take control, but rather help the bride feel in control." This is a story that I didn't know I needed in my life; but once I read it, it made everything feel better. REVIEW This story is pitched as a romcom but I would classify it as more of a chic-lit. That being said, I never read chic-lit and clearly that is a mistake. I need more books like this "As a professional bridesmaid, I'm merely there to aid the bride in producing her vision for the day and be a helping hand to her. I'm not there to take control, but rather help the bride feel in control." This is a story that I didn't know I needed in my life; but once I read it, it made everything feel better. REVIEW This story is pitched as a romcom but I would classify it as more of a chic-lit. That being said, I never read chic-lit and clearly that is a mistake. I need more books like this in my life. Books that focus on the growth of our female protagonist, that focus on female friendships being made, that have the romance as a minor subplot. I read this in two sittings over two nights and miss it already. Sophie Breeze was fabulous. She has a lot going on in her life and is constantly stressed out by everything she has to do, but she always makes time for the people closest to her (I connected with this a lot). Then she gets a wedding invite to her ex's wedding and everything falls apart. Because her ex is still part of her friend group, she has to see him from time to time. Every scene he was in I just wanted to slap him. He is SO ignorant of Sophie's feelings and she always feel belittled by him. There is a lot of growth for Sophie as she learns to step out of her comfort zone and embrace spontaneity. She doesn't want to be the "boring ex-girlfriend" anymore and she slowly comes out of her shell thanks to the ridiculous tasks Cordelia gives her. I adored the friendship between Cordelia and Sophie. At first I wasn't sure if I would connect with Cordelia, if I would come to understand and appreciate her. She was so hell bent on making Sophie's life miserable and being catty that I was afraid there would be no depth to her other than being a spoiled society lady. Thankfully, that was a wrong assumption. Cordelia is a woman who has been betrayed heavily by people she thought she could trust, as a result she has become very closed off and acts like an Ice Queen to anyone who tries to get near. It takes a while for Sophie to thaw her exterior, but watching them slowly become friends was better than any romance. I grew to love Cordelia and I just wanted to protect her-much like Sophie did. Also, Cordelia and her fiancé were SO adorable. The other female friendship is between Sophie and her cousin/bff, Cara. Their relationship reminds me a lot of the friendship I have with my own cousin. We spent so much time together growing up that we were fiercely loyal to one another no matter what, but also knew when to tell the other that they needed to get their stuff together. Their scenes were so pure and made me smile. The romance between Sophie and Tom was really sweet. I laughed at a lot of their interactions and how dorky Sophie acted around him. It could have been a little more fleshed out, but because it wasn't the main focus of the plot I don't really mind that. Here is a quote about Tom: "He's handsome, rich, and part of the British aristocracy. Essentially, he's a modern Mr. Darcy. Without the grumpy, brooding persona." I really adored seeing the other weddings and bride disasters while Sophie was dealing with Cordelia's wedding. There were so many hilarious situations. There is a bride who was having a Star Wars themed wedding and asked if Sophie would be comfortable dressing as Chewbacca, it was hilarious. There is another bride who asks Sophie is she can dye her hair to match the other bridesmaids! I had so many laughs reading this. I loved the mixed media format of text chains and emails between chapters. They either featured interactions between Sophie and her clients or her suppliers. They were hilarious, cringey, and frustrating (in a good way). As someone who has worked in customer service, I applaud Sophie for maintaining a calm disposition when dealing with people who cannot understand simple directions. One of the email chains is between Sophie and a vintage suitcase company who apparently doesn't sell actually vintage suitcases but suitcases made to look vintage even though they end every email with "WE CARE ABOUT VINTAGE! THE ONLY RETAILER THAT REALLY CARES ABOUT VINTAGE" *holds face in hands* Lastly... Gods, I hated Annabel. What an awful person. I won't say anything else about this but I will mention that I have never gotten along with anyone named Annabel in my entire life and this is why. Overall, I cannot wait for Birchall's next adult novel. I wish I had more to devour but alas, I shall have to wait. Please pick this up if you can! *review copy received from the publisher, but all thoughts and opinions are my own* TW: mention of drug overdose

  7. 5 out of 5

    Corina

    I LOVE British novels; romances, literature, it all works for me. And it’s even better if I can listen to the audiobook. A British narrations always makes me smile and this one did just that with its easy and entertaining story. It’s rare that I buy a book because of its cover, but I made an exception for this one. I even went and got myself the US edition compared to the cheaper UK version, because I loved this particular cover so much. It’s a bit ironic, since I bought the book because of its B I LOVE British novels; romances, literature, it all works for me. And it’s even better if I can listen to the audiobook. A British narrations always makes me smile and this one did just that with its easy and entertaining story. It’s rare that I buy a book because of its cover, but I made an exception for this one. I even went and got myself the US edition compared to the cheaper UK version, because I loved this particular cover so much. It’s a bit ironic, since I bought the book because of its British voice, but picked the US cover to go with it. So, about the book. I thought it was a romance when I bought it, but it felt and sounded more like chick lit to me. If I had to guess I would say that 15% of the book is about the romance between Sophie and her love interest. That said, I ended up really enjoying the story. From the insane wedding expectations and demands, to the frenemies situation between bride and bridesmaid. The book was wonderfully entertaining, and had some really great characters. I can’t imagine making being a bridesmaid into a career, but Sophie knew what she was doing. She had it down to a science. The organisation, the knowhow and connections, but most of all she knew how to handle the craziness of it all. And besides all that, she was a down to earth and truly likeable character. Also seeing her and Cordelia clash heads was fun, and most of all I loved how It all ended. The book was well balanced between the fun and the more thoughtful storyline about female friendships. I sometimes feel we make it extra hard on ourselves when it comes to friendships. Either way, I love where Sophie and Cordelia ended up, and would actually like to read a sequel about them and Sophie and her love interest. ___________________________________ I received a copy of this book from the publisher for free in exchange for an honest review. My opinions have not been influenced by the publisher or the author. You can find me on my blog and on Bookstagram

  8. 4 out of 5

    Bonnie DeMoss

    Sophie is a wedding expert whose job is to become part of the bridal party and do whatever the family needs, from small errands to full-blown wedding planning. Her most important task is to manage crises that occur during or before the wedding, such as a drunk groom or missing “luxury” port-a-potties. When she is hired to become a bridesmaid for the difficult daughter of a Marchioness, Sophie encounters her biggest challenge yet, and possibly a romance. “Sophie is a professional bridesmaid.” Just Sophie is a wedding expert whose job is to become part of the bridal party and do whatever the family needs, from small errands to full-blown wedding planning. Her most important task is to manage crises that occur during or before the wedding, such as a drunk groom or missing “luxury” port-a-potties. When she is hired to become a bridesmaid for the difficult daughter of a Marchioness, Sophie encounters her biggest challenge yet, and possibly a romance. “Sophie is a professional bridesmaid.” Just that much of the description of this hilarious British romcom had me hooked, and I had to know more. This is such a fun book. The idea of a professional bridesmaid is intriguing, and the author will have you chuckling with some of the crazy email exchanges Sophie has with clients. We learn a little bit about British nobility, but this is mostly a book about friendship, with a nice little romance to boot. This book takes us from humor to heartbreak and back again, with a lot of wedding hijinks thrown in. You will laugh aloud, and maybe even shed a tear, while reading this delightful book. Fans of romantic comedies, friendship reads, and weddings will enjoy this book. The Secret Bridesmaid will be released on May 4, 2021. I received a free copy of this book from St. Martin’s Press via Netgalley. My review is voluntary.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Rachel

    Ah, I loved it. Sophie is a bridesmaid for hire, like a wedding planner, but more about not letting the bride lose her mind and making sure everything goes smoothly. Everything is going great until she's hired by Lady Victoria for her daughter Cordelia's wedding. Cordelia is basically a toddler in a grown woman body, and is determined to make things difficult. It only get's worse when Sophie finds herself falling for the brides older brother. I enjoyed this so much, such a great light read. It re Ah, I loved it. Sophie is a bridesmaid for hire, like a wedding planner, but more about not letting the bride lose her mind and making sure everything goes smoothly. Everything is going great until she's hired by Lady Victoria for her daughter Cordelia's wedding. Cordelia is basically a toddler in a grown woman body, and is determined to make things difficult. It only get's worse when Sophie finds herself falling for the brides older brother. I enjoyed this so much, such a great light read. It reminds me a lot of one of my favorite books, so I have a feeling I'll be rereading this one the same way. While there is a slight romance, the true love story in this book is the beautiful friendship that develops between Sophie and Cordelia. True friends are so hard to find, but so important. There are a couple things that kind took me out of the story, the random emails or text conversations about other weddings that were inserted. They didn't seem to relate to the story in anyway, like they were just stuck in there to say "yes this is my job I'm doing many weddings". They were jarring and interrupted the flow of the story, no matter how humorous some of them were. *Thank you to the publisher for this eARC.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Rachel

    This was the most charming story! Our protagonist Sophie is a very lovable and eager to please professional bridesmaid. She often finds herself jumping through tons of hoops for various jobs. But when she meets a new client, soon to be bride Cordelia, she finds herself challenged in ways she couldn’t anticipate and her world shifts significantly. There should be more books focused on female friendship. This was so sweet and funny, and it’s very easy to root for these ladies as they try to grow an This was the most charming story! Our protagonist Sophie is a very lovable and eager to please professional bridesmaid. She often finds herself jumping through tons of hoops for various jobs. But when she meets a new client, soon to be bride Cordelia, she finds herself challenged in ways she couldn’t anticipate and her world shifts significantly. There should be more books focused on female friendship. This was so sweet and funny, and it’s very easy to root for these ladies as they try to grow and find happiness. And the secondary characters were lovely too! The romance and glamour of the weddings makes for a fun boost and setting. I did also like the bits with the extreme requests from the bridal parties, Chewbacca especially cracked me up. Anyway, if you want something light but still want some feels, I’d recommend this book.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Cortney Walton

    Words cannot express how much I LOVED and ADORED this book. I was smiling throughout the book and was laughing from the very beginning. I laughed out loud on page 2. The laughter continued the whole book. The shenanigans Sophie gets into with the brides were simply the best. 😂. The bachelorette parties, the emails, the requests were just fantastic. I also must mention the swan incident in the lake. I could not stop laughing! I loved the friendship between Cordelia and Sophie. The character growth Words cannot express how much I LOVED and ADORED this book. I was smiling throughout the book and was laughing from the very beginning. I laughed out loud on page 2. The laughter continued the whole book. The shenanigans Sophie gets into with the brides were simply the best. 😂. The bachelorette parties, the emails, the requests were just fantastic. I also must mention the swan incident in the lake. I could not stop laughing! I loved the friendship between Cordelia and Sophie. The character growth was just fantastic. I loved Tom and Sophie! I was definitely rooting for them. Their moments together were just so magical and just so sweet. The ending was just perfect. I loved every single thing about it. One of all time favorite endings. This book is now one of my all time favorite books ever and my number 1 for the year so far!

  12. 4 out of 5

    zaraa

    [image error] very simple and cute. and, you know what? older brothers in books have a whole another vibe. the Secret Bridesmaid was my first book by Katy Birchall, and i have to say that i was impressed with the way this book held my attention despite not just being a heavily romance book. though there is some romance in this book for sure, but it actually focuses much more on the lead female character, Sophie as well as the different friendships around her. i loved how quirky and solid Sophie [image error] very simple and cute. and, you know what? older brothers in books have a whole another vibe. the Secret Bridesmaid was my first book by Katy Birchall, and i have to say that i was impressed with the way this book held my attention despite not just being a heavily romance book. though there is some romance in this book for sure, but it actually focuses much more on the lead female character, Sophie as well as the different friendships around her. i loved how quirky and solid Sophie was as a female character. the parts of her alone in this book were very quite entertaining themselves. even though i didn't mind the plot not being too focused on romance, i do wish there was more romance because i had planned out so many moments between Sophie and Thomas in my head and they were cute together and i just wanted more of them. because of that this book turned out to be not a hit for me, but also not a total miss either. i just wished the romance was more prominent however, seeing the focus on female friendships instead was also quite refreshing. ARC provided via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Em

    I picked this one up on a whim - new to me author; interesting premise; possible diamond in the rough.... Um. Nope. This one didn't work for this reader and I HATE THE BAIT AND SWITCHEROO in the genre classification of this story at NG. This is NOT a romance novel. It has romantic elements (very very very very few poor reader (and PS, they're poorly done)); it's more a story of two completely opposite women becoming friends. I only sort of liked our principal character Sophie - a wedding planner I picked this one up on a whim - new to me author; interesting premise; possible diamond in the rough.... Um. Nope. This one didn't work for this reader and I HATE THE BAIT AND SWITCHEROO in the genre classification of this story at NG. This is NOT a romance novel. It has romantic elements (very very very very few poor reader (and PS, they're poorly done)); it's more a story of two completely opposite women becoming friends. I only sort of liked our principal character Sophie - a wedding planner masquerading as a bridesmaid in order to keep her identity and mission a secret. OOH! THE INTRIGUE. THE THRILLS. So, like, um, who cares if you call yourself a planner or a bridesmaid and why are people keeping the use of one or the other a secret? Planning a wedding is a total headache. If you can afford a wedding planner, why wouldn't you use one? READER. STOP JUDGING PEOPLE WHO HIRE WEDDING PLANNERS. THEY AREN'T WEAK. THEY HAVE FEELINGS, TOO. STOP BEING WEDDING PLANNER JUDGING DICKS. FFS. Is that isn't actually a thing? Who are these people? Sophie is coming after you. Not. This novel is a super weird take on the wedding industry. Then there's Cordelia, the client/bride/kinda a bitch frenemy Sophie is hired to help. She's mean. She's rude. SHE'S MISUNDERSTOOD. Spare me. She wasn't nice to Sophie - a stranger who bends over backwards to help her at the behest of Cordelia's mom. Cordelia has trust issues. I feel you girl. It's been a rough road. But you are straight up not nice and I didn't like you treating doormat Sophie like that. Meanwhile, your fiance is an absolute dreamboat who for some reason looks the other way when he knows you're being an ass because it's a protective measure. Yep, didn't get this combo platter of personalities either. And then there's an oddly shoehorned instalust romance with a person we never spend any time with and remains an ENIGMA. Again, the intrigue. LOL. And an ex who's your stereotypical a-hole and jumped from your eight year romance into an engagement in a hot minute. Nice. I didn't really like this as much as I thought I did. Characters are odd; relationships are vague; story should be called "The Doormat Who Convinced a Kinda Nasty and Not Nice Person to be their Bestie and HEALED THE WORLD WITH KINDNESS and Fell for a Playboy Who Probably Fell in Love, Too." Go for it reader.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Zoe

    Charming, flirty, and comical! The Secret Bridesmaid is a heartwarming, amusing tale that takes us to London, England and into the life of the patient, committed Sophie Breeze as she juggles a demanding career, a famous yet difficult bride, and a growing attraction for a man who, unfortunately, doesn’t even know her real name. The prose is smooth and light. The characters, including all the supporting characters, are feisty, fun-loving, and intriguing. And the plot is a heartfelt, flirty blend of Charming, flirty, and comical! The Secret Bridesmaid is a heartwarming, amusing tale that takes us to London, England and into the life of the patient, committed Sophie Breeze as she juggles a demanding career, a famous yet difficult bride, and a growing attraction for a man who, unfortunately, doesn’t even know her real name. The prose is smooth and light. The characters, including all the supporting characters, are feisty, fun-loving, and intriguing. And the plot is a heartfelt, flirty blend of tricky situations, tender moments, humorous hijinks, self-discovery, friendship, family, happiness, romance, and all the complex ins and outs of planning the perfect wedding. Overall, The Secret Bridesmaid is a humorous, enjoyable, highly entertaining treat that’s a fantastic adult debut by Birchall that, in my opinion, is the perfect rom-com for any day at the beach. Thank you to SMP Romance – St. Martin’s Press for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Melissa

    This book was delightful! It’s rare that I give a 5-star ratings to chick-lit, but this one was exactly what I needed. It was funny and smart with lots of laugh-out-loud moments and a cast of charming characters. I especially enjoyed that that the book was more focused on friendship and loyalty than a sappy romance. It was fun and smushy in all the right places - the perfect escape book. Thanks to St. Martins Press and Goodreads for this advanced copy! the Secret Bridesmaid is on sale May 4, 202 This book was delightful! It’s rare that I give a 5-star ratings to chick-lit, but this one was exactly what I needed. It was funny and smart with lots of laugh-out-loud moments and a cast of charming characters. I especially enjoyed that that the book was more focused on friendship and loyalty than a sappy romance. It was fun and smushy in all the right places - the perfect escape book. Thanks to St. Martins Press and Goodreads for this advanced copy! the Secret Bridesmaid is on sale May 4, 2021.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Holly Reynolds

    I loved this so much! This was laugh out loud funny(much to the chagrin of my husband, who was trying to sleep), made me tear up and was just fantastic! This had more depth to it than your average rom-com and the characters are so likeable, you will be rooting for them! I absolutely adored this book!

  17. 4 out of 5

    Darla

    Sophie Breeze is the quintessential bridesmaid. She is discreet and has wedding planning super powers. Hire her, invent a back story of your friendship, and you will have a stress-free wedding day. It is a brilliant concept, and Sophie is a pro. Then Lady Cordelia Swann (or rather her mother) decides to hire Sophie. The Swann family moves in exalted circles, so Sophie is thrilled. She just has to convince Cordelia. . . I loved this book so much. The cover is fantastic. Sophie is such a likable p Sophie Breeze is the quintessential bridesmaid. She is discreet and has wedding planning super powers. Hire her, invent a back story of your friendship, and you will have a stress-free wedding day. It is a brilliant concept, and Sophie is a pro. Then Lady Cordelia Swann (or rather her mother) decides to hire Sophie. The Swann family moves in exalted circles, so Sophie is thrilled. She just has to convince Cordelia. . . I loved this book so much. The cover is fantastic. Sophie is such a likable protagonist. There are humorous inserts related to some of the other weddings that Sophie is working on. Lots of fun wedding details. Some might think this is a rehash of the movie '27 Dresses,' but in my opinion it is so much better. Much of that is due to the fact that the story arc is focused on Cordelia and Sophie growing as friends rather than Sophie's love life. This would make a perfect vacation read! Thank you to St. Martins and Edelweiss+ for a DRC in exchange for an honest review.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer

    4.5/ 5 stars The Secret Bridesmaid is my first book by this author. It is her adult fiction debut. The story takes place in the UK and is sort of a combination between chick lit, women's fiction and a British rom-com. The narrator is Sophie (31 years old-1st person POV). She is a professional bridesmaid. I loved this premise so much. Sophie loves weddings. She has turned this into a full time job. She is hired to pose as the bride's friend. She works to help plan the perfect wedding. But the wedding 4.5/ 5 stars The Secret Bridesmaid is my first book by this author. It is her adult fiction debut. The story takes place in the UK and is sort of a combination between chick lit, women's fiction and a British rom-com. The narrator is Sophie (31 years old-1st person POV). She is a professional bridesmaid. I loved this premise so much. Sophie loves weddings. She has turned this into a full time job. She is hired to pose as the bride's friend. She works to help plan the perfect wedding. But the wedding guests don't know. The title is perfection. I absolutely loved getting to see all of the weddings that Sophie was a part of. It made this book extra special. Also in between chapters the author includes emails and phone messages from brides and vendors. This really set the tone for the book. This book does have some romance. But it's not really the main focus of the story IMO. Yes there are weddings. So the book does have a romantic feel to it. But the book focuses more on Sophie's job. I definitely wish that there had been more focus on romance. The book is really about friendship. I loved Sophie's cousin Cara. And I loved the friendships that Sophie made with the brides. The book was funny, but it was also charming. This was a quick, fun, light read. I really enjoyed it. Thanks to netgalley and St. Martin's Press for allowing me to read this book.

  19. 4 out of 5

    l a u r a

    i would love to have Sophie's job… i would love to have Sophie's job…

  20. 4 out of 5

    Ilaria 🌸

    Premise I picked this book convinced this was a romance book an enemy to lovers fake fiancé troope Enemy to friend it is but this is not romance is chick lit Nevertheless brilliantly written made me pass a good laughing afternoon. Sophie and Cordelia are definitely something else togheter Thanks Netgalley for providing an ARC

  21. 4 out of 5

    Wendy'sThoughts

    4.5 Such A Giggle Stars * * * * 1/2 Spoiler Free-A Quick Review Oh, how I love it when I read something that lives up to the blurb and hype. This was a winner from start to end. Witty, human, and caused me to enjoy myself fully while reading it. Very straightforward, Sophie Breeze has been the perfect bridesmaid for all of her crew. She has it down to a science. She is organized, charming, understanding, and really is the bridal whisperer. Her cousin had experienced Sophie's talent first hand and i 4.5 Such A Giggle Stars * * * * 1/2 Spoiler Free-A Quick Review Oh, how I love it when I read something that lives up to the blurb and hype. This was a winner from start to end. Witty, human, and caused me to enjoy myself fully while reading it. Very straightforward, Sophie Breeze has been the perfect bridesmaid for all of her crew. She has it down to a science. She is organized, charming, understanding, and really is the bridal whisperer. Her cousin had experienced Sophie's talent first hand and in a moment on the phone after a miracle conversation calming her, she tells Sophie she should do this as a professional. Be there for brides as their bridesmaid, someone in their corner during this stressful time. Well, Sophie does it and she is having a start of a successful career. The trick is that she shows up as someone the bride knows, not for hire, so she is anonymous. Perfect. The bride has someone looking out for her, a "rock" who will make sure the stress is taken over. This way a bride can actually enjoy the event and experience. This all ramps up onto steroids when Sophie is recommended to Marchioness of Meade. You see the mother of the bride has a daughter who is getting married and it will be THE Wedding of the Season. The only problem is that the bride-to-be is someone who wants No Part Of This At All. Her rep and who she pretends to be is the "I Don't Care About Anything and You Are No One" attitude. She is the definition of resting Bit#h Face. Cruella has nothing on her...but not really because she may be crusty on the outside...inside she is a marshmallow. We are there through every task Sophie gets sent on, no matter how ridiculous. We see how things are going and her cousin and others know she is working on a wedding from hell but not who it is...NDA clause. There is so much to enjoy about this book and you can't lose with this. Perfect to relax with. ~~~~~ Before Reading ~~~~~ Think 27 Dresses yet as a professional. Excited to read it, fingers crossed. The Secret Bridesmaid https://www.goodreads.com/review/show... A gifted copy was provided by St. Martin's Griffin for an honest review For more Reviews, Free E-books and Giveaways

  22. 5 out of 5

    Robyn

    This was a cute and simple rom-com read and I enjoyed every page! It followed the path that most rom-coms do, but it was just cute as could be! Sophie is a professional bridesmaid, this is one step down from a wedding planner, but up from a regular bridesmaid. She has a tough client that turns to mush as the book progresses and the bride has a super good-looking brother.. all to be expected. It wasn't over the top, not too hot and not too cold.. it was just right! But above what is expected, it wa This was a cute and simple rom-com read and I enjoyed every page! It followed the path that most rom-coms do, but it was just cute as could be! Sophie is a professional bridesmaid, this is one step down from a wedding planner, but up from a regular bridesmaid. She has a tough client that turns to mush as the book progresses and the bride has a super good-looking brother.. all to be expected. It wasn't over the top, not too hot and not too cold.. it was just right! But above what is expected, it was just a fun read. 4 stars Happy Reading!

  23. 5 out of 5

    Rox

    *2.5 STARS* Description: Sophie Breeze is the girl you hire when you're not too inclined to hire a wedding planner but you still need help organizing your wedding. Everyone loves having Sophie around, she's nice, friendly and a problem solver. Her life might not be how she wanted - her ex after a 8year relationship remarries before she even goes on a single post-breakup date and he has the audacity to invite Sophie to his wedding, but hey - work is going Great. Enter Lady Cordelia: hers would be *2.5 STARS* Description: Sophie Breeze is the girl you hire when you're not too inclined to hire a wedding planner but you still need help organizing your wedding. Everyone loves having Sophie around, she's nice, friendly and a problem solver. Her life might not be how she wanted - her ex after a 8year relationship remarries before she even goes on a single post-breakup date and he has the audacity to invite Sophie to his wedding, but hey - work is going Great. Enter Lady Cordelia: hers would be the wedding of the century, but she refuses the help Sophie was hired to offer and instead tries to make her quit by being the most annoyingly diva in history. But in the midst of trying to pull Cordelia's wedding off, keep her identity secret from the bride's handsome brother, Sophie and Cordelia spark an unusual...dare she call it... friendship? My Thoughts: Stuff I liked >Sophie's inner monologue was very funny >I like the peek into her other weddings > The cover for the book is very pretty Stuff I didn't like - anything that had to do with Cordelia annoyed me beyond measure (I understand that is is the antagonist, but it is very difficult to brush aside the things she says or does once they become friends) -the love-subplot felt, at best, out of place (there was no chemistry between them and they didn't contribute anything to the story, so for me it makes no sense why they were ever paired up together) -I didn't see why Sophie needed to "sass it up" or why it was such a big deal in the story. Was she not worthy being the main character if she wasn't sassy? (this is my personal opinion) Bottom line: It was an OKAY read. I have to confess that past the 50% mark I had to push myself to finish it since it got increasingly annoying and uncomfortable (again, Cordelia's bullying took two starts off this rating). It was fun for a while and then it wasn't but hey, maybe I wasn't the target audience. Thank you NetGalley for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Smriti

    This was just so friggin cute!!! Though, I should say from the start that this book was less of a romance and more of a ‘womance’. Basically, it was more about a friendship than anything else. The romance really was even mentioned only at the 50% mark and then it took off into something only at the end, but well. It was a really cute read though. Laugh out loud in parts and sweet and wholesome. I really grew to love the characters and was invested in their friendship and them as people. The plot This was just so friggin cute!!! Though, I should say from the start that this book was less of a romance and more of a ‘womance’. Basically, it was more about a friendship than anything else. The romance really was even mentioned only at the 50% mark and then it took off into something only at the end, but well. It was a really cute read though. Laugh out loud in parts and sweet and wholesome. I really grew to love the characters and was invested in their friendship and them as people. The plot may have been a little obvious, but it was still enjoyable to read with Birchall peppering in some fun banter and episodes to chuckle along with. Definitely recommend it for people who like to read about friendships or for a read that feels like a cute hug. Thank you to Netgalley and St Martin's Press for the arc copy in exchange for my honest review.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Leah | Big, Bad and Bookish

    4.5 but I'm rounding up to 5 Warnings for bullying, breaking & entering This was such a delight! I honestly didn’t know what I was expecting going in but The Secret Bridesmaid surprised me by being such a charming, heartfelt and often times very funny contemporary romance! Sophie Breeze is a bridesmaid–a professional one whose job is be there for the bride whatever. Throughout the book you get a chance to see what that ‘whatever’ can sometimes entail and it often leads to some hilarious situations 4.5 but I'm rounding up to 5 Warnings for bullying, breaking & entering This was such a delight! I honestly didn’t know what I was expecting going in but The Secret Bridesmaid surprised me by being such a charming, heartfelt and often times very funny contemporary romance! Sophie Breeze is a bridesmaid–a professional one whose job is be there for the bride whatever. Throughout the book you get a chance to see what that ‘whatever’ can sometimes entail and it often leads to some hilarious situations (*cough*Chewbacca costume*cough*). Luckily for Sophie she gets the chance of a lifetime when the mother of a past bride puts her in touch with the Marchioness of Meade–a high society wedding that could make or break Sophie’s career. Our professional bridesmaid is determined to do a good job but unfortunately things aren’t going to be easy for her–from the bride Cordelia’s adamant refusal of her services, to the outlandish attempts she makes to force Sophie to quit, to the way she insults her at every turn, every move Cordelia makes puts Sophie through the wringer. But our heroine meets all those challenges head on and proves how brilliant a secret bridesmaid can be. Sophie truly is a wonderful heroine, she’s such a caring individual and her journey from being a bit of a pushover, to learning how to say ‘no’ is truly an inspiring one. There are plenty of laugh-out-loud moments within, from problems with wedding suppliers, to other bride’s and their ridiculous requests. To balance out the more outrageously funny moments, the book also shares some truly tender moments, along with an achingly sweet romance and a wonderful message about friendships. My favourite part in this book is the friendship that develops, it’s one that tugs on the heartstrings and I found myself rooting more for them than for the romance! (Although I will say that Tom is dreamy. Who doesn’t love a charming English aristocrat?) If you want an emotionally moving, loud-out-loud book about friendship and romance, then look no further than The Secret Bridesmaid! The perfect book for Spring and one I highly, highly recommend. Thank you to Hodder & Stoughton for an arc in exchange for an honest review.

  26. 5 out of 5

    MaryannC. Book Freak

    Sometimes I need to change things up from all the historical novels and the thrillers and read a fun, lighthearted romp like this one. Sophie Breeze is A Secret Bridesmaid, meaning she is usually hired on by a bride or relative to assist in all the overwhelming tasks a bride needs to do before the big day but in the guise of a distant friend who has come to the rescue for some of these tasks. Sophie has proven invaluable to some of the brides she has assisted whether dressing up as a Star Wars c Sometimes I need to change things up from all the historical novels and the thrillers and read a fun, lighthearted romp like this one. Sophie Breeze is A Secret Bridesmaid, meaning she is usually hired on by a bride or relative to assist in all the overwhelming tasks a bride needs to do before the big day but in the guise of a distant friend who has come to the rescue for some of these tasks. Sophie has proven invaluable to some of the brides she has assisted whether dressing up as a Star Wars character or to making sure orders for t-shirts with catchy phrases is correct, Sophie does it all. When a friend refers her to the elegant, upper crust Lady Meade who is in need of a secret bridesmaid for her daughter's upcoming nuptials, Sophie sees this a chance to further promote her fledgling operation and branch out. But, little does she know that Lady Meade's daughter Cordelia is a BRIDEZILLA in the worst way and Sophie really has her work cut out for her. Sometimes I felt so bad for Sophie, aka Emily as she comes to be known in the part of bridesmaid she plays to unsuspecting family and friends, she certainly was not a quitter and I rooted for her even when I would have thrown in the towel if it were me. This was a charming, fun read that I could easily see being made into a movie with maybe the suave Tom Hiddleston or Henry Cavill as her dashingly, handsome brother, Tom (just my opinion). Thanks to author Katy Birchall and NetGalley for a digital copy of this in exchange for my review.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Amy

    This was an unexpectedly delightful story in the spirit of Sophie Kinsella but with characters I actually liked and a plot that left me satisfied. I forgot who recommended it to me, but thank you, kind person. Meet Sophie, a secret bridesmaid. What bride wants to admit defeat and hire a wedding planner? Not the ones Sophie comes into contact with. So, while pretending to be an old school chum or long lost cousin or forgotten college roommate, she slips into the wedding party and from the backgro This was an unexpectedly delightful story in the spirit of Sophie Kinsella but with characters I actually liked and a plot that left me satisfied. I forgot who recommended it to me, but thank you, kind person. Meet Sophie, a secret bridesmaid. What bride wants to admit defeat and hire a wedding planner? Not the ones Sophie comes into contact with. So, while pretending to be an old school chum or long lost cousin or forgotten college roommate, she slips into the wedding party and from the background, runs everything necessary to make sure things go smoothly on her client's special day. No one ever finds out. When Sophie gets offered a chance to work her magic on THE wedding of the century, she can't believe her luck. There is only one minor setback...the bride hates her. Sophie makes this book stand out, though admittedly, more for the clichés she avoids than the ones she fulfills. She actually enjoys her job, has a healthy relationship with her parents, and provides behaves professionally much more often than you would expect. Her character growth comes across naturally. And she's just very likable. She's also funny. This book made me laugh out loud on multiple occasions. There is a romance playing out in the background but it is truly in the background. The real relationship driving this book is Sophie and the unwilling bride. Their friendship creates a nice foil for the plot and even when the Big, Foreseeable Climax hits, felt much more realistic than any betrayal form the romantic lead. If you're at all a fan of British rom coms, I definitely recommend checking this one out.

  28. 5 out of 5

    laurel [the suspected bibliophile]

    Adorable and delightful. However, I would definitely have not been able to put up with near as much shit as Sophie did. Adorable and delightful. However, I would definitely have not been able to put up with near as much shit as Sophie did.

  29. 5 out of 5

    DeB MaRtEnS

    Simply, FUN! Sophie Breeze (you JUST know this character will be a goofball with a name like that!) is a “professional bridesmaid”. Like a gunslinger in a spaghetti Western, her presence is a bit idiosyncratic - her brides and their weddings quite loopy- and so good for a laugh. Sophie lands the biggest contract of her career- landed gentry - the daughter and bride-to-be Cordelia is hell on wheels, and she must keep her identity secret. Great hijinks result, a love interest pops up amidst the sp Simply, FUN! Sophie Breeze (you JUST know this character will be a goofball with a name like that!) is a “professional bridesmaid”. Like a gunslinger in a spaghetti Western, her presence is a bit idiosyncratic - her brides and their weddings quite loopy- and so good for a laugh. Sophie lands the biggest contract of her career- landed gentry - the daughter and bride-to-be Cordelia is hell on wheels, and she must keep her identity secret. Great hijinks result, a love interest pops up amidst the splendour of Lords and Ladies - all will comfortingly end well after a few crises. Katy Birchall’s debut in adult fiction is reminiscent of early Sophie Kinsella- charming, light-hearted, good natured with her upstanding central character and fast paced plot. I felt relaxed and so entertained - no scary bits lurking- just what I needed for my reading pleasure right now. Almost a five star book- but I’ve been deep in some five star literature recently so I will leave this at about 4.5 stars in the Chick Lit/Rom-Com genre.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Mia

    I read this in one sitting, it means that it wasn’t only a fast read, but that I enjoyed it too. Before I begin, I want to say that this is my first time reading something by Katy Birchall, and also I can't remember last time reading a book with the royalty trope. As for characters, I really did enjoy the cast of characters especially Sophie. I enjoyed hers and Tom’s relationship but it is more build up to a romance. Overall, it is a fast, easy and enjoyable read. ARC kindly provided by the publis I read this in one sitting, it means that it wasn’t only a fast read, but that I enjoyed it too. Before I begin, I want to say that this is my first time reading something by Katy Birchall, and also I can't remember last time reading a book with the royalty trope. As for characters, I really did enjoy the cast of characters especially Sophie. I enjoyed hers and Tom’s relationship but it is more build up to a romance. Overall, it is a fast, easy and enjoyable read. ARC kindly provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

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