Welcome to Mayhem, Minnesota, where the cats wear sweaters, the local priest dispenses dating advice, and you can find your fortune in the bottom of a pie tin.

When her family’s pub is threatened with foreclosure, Hennessy O’Halloran, along with her three sisters, is determined to raise enough money to keep it out of the hands of the L.A. real-estate developer trying to raze it and replace it with a—god forbid!—multiplex theater.

Bryan Truitt always gets what he wants. And what he wants is the sweet corner property on Mayhem’s Main Street where O’Halloran’s Pub sits. But his “quick business” turns into more than he bargains for when he meets the feisty Hennessy. Next thing he knows, he’s betting her he can outlast Mayhem’s punishing winter in time to make the pub his—or he’ll gift it to her for free.

Hennessy knows better than to flirt with the enemy. But suddenly Bryan’s not sure which he wants more…the property or the woman who owns it. 

Titles in the Whiskey Girls series include:  Blame It On The Bet

Title:  Blame It On The Bet
Series:  Whiskey Girls #1
Author:  L.E. Rico
Genre:  Contemporary Romance
Published:  September 11, 2017
Publisher:  Entangled Publishing – Bliss
My Rating:  4.5 stars

Dealing with her father’s death was hard enough, now Hennessy is being called back home to deal with paperwork, debts, puzzles and the real threat of a  developer’s eye on their family’s pub.  So not gonna happen, not if she had anything to say about it.  Truth is their father had a lot of debts, loans on the bar and they were coming due fast.  He might be sin in a bottle, but Bryan was not getting what her family had worked so hard for with the swipe of a pen on a check.  The bet seemed easy enough to win, this city boy would never survive the winter out here in the real world… but maybe she should keep her guard up more firmly.  It wasn’t in her plan to fall for the man who was trying to take so much from her family.  But, plans change.

I had such fun with Blame It On The Bet.  First off – small towns, I absolutely adore the quirkiness, the close knit community and that special feel that is impossible to explain but real in the feel of small town living.  Populate that small town with odd characters, quirky cats and watching out for neighbors and friends, then you have me hooked.  Hennessy and her sisters are such a mix match of personalities and that makes their family feel all the more realistic.  Just having met the siblings I’m captured enough by them that I cannot wait to follow their stories as well.

Bryan and Hennessy are so believable in their roles.  It was an adventure watching them move slowly from enemies to possibly more.  I believed in their romance, and that feeling plays a huge part in how much I enjoy a book.  When I can suspend belief and buy into what the author is telling me, then I’ve entered their world.  I fell into Mayhem and I’d love to move in, it’s that type of feel that makes a story feel right for me.

If you love small town romance, then I’d highly recommend Blame It On The Bet and encourage you to follow the series.  I know that I will be waiting for the next story to arrive.

*I received an e-ARC of this novel from the publisher via NetGalley. That does not change what I think of this story. It is my choice to leave a review giving my personal opinion about this book.*

Available for the Kindle