This post was originally published at Novelicious.com and is now at WritingTipsOasis.com. WritingTipsOasis.com acquired Novelicious.com in June 2022.
Reviewed by Victoria Sutton
Marla Jacobs owns and runs The Little White Wedding chapel in the sleepy Shropshire countryside. Her business is her pride and joy and it is nationally acclaimed as the place to go for a wedding with a difference. So when she hears a funeral parlour is to open in the neighbouring building she is far less than impressed. Death and Weddings definitely do not go together! Out of fear of losing her beloved wedding business, she declares war on the funeral parlour and its, alarmingly charming, proprietor Gabriel Ryan.
Gabe is the youngest of the Ryan clan. After the death of his father he flees Ireland, where he finds the memory of his father too painful. He feels it is time to make his own name in the industry he has known his whole life, as a Funeral Director. He chooses the sleepy Shropshire village for his business as he believes there is a gap in the market there and he will be providing a much needed service to the inhabitants of the village in their hour of need. When he finds himself at war with the strikingly attractive Marla, he is determined to be the victor, but at what cost?
Gabe is the typical Irish charmer, and who can’t help but fall for one of those?! Marla is a feisty American red head who, in spite of her beloved wedding business, doesn’t actually believe in love and marriage! From the moment Gabe and Marla meet the sparks fly and, although they are sworn enemies, they can't help but be attracted to each other. I rooted for them from the outset, but had to wonder what the solution could be if the two businesses were so inherently incompatible?I instantly loved the village setting and its inhabitants – a close-knit community who will do anything for each other. Jonny was the funniest and campest gay best friend to Marla and also vying for her affection is Bluey, her most gorgeous four-legged best friend. Ivan and Dora are the adorable elderly couple. Melanie was perfect as Gabe’s ideal, if not slightly crazed, receptionist, and Rupert was well cast as the village villain. My favourite sub plot was the love triangle involving Emily, Tom and Dan. A heartbreaking situation leads Emily to do something she would never have imagined and now she must decide how to handle the consequences. Is it better to come clean or to keep her secret to herself?
I thoroughly enjoyed Undertaking Love. At times it is laugh out loud funny and at others touchingly sad, with just the right amount of raunch thrown in for good measure! It kept me guessing right until the end and while I couldn’t predict how things would turn out I wasn’t disappointed. An Undertakers might not be the most traditional setting for a love story, but it definitely works!