Thursday, March 13, 2014

Review and Giveaway: What a Woman Wants

What a Woman Wants (Manley Maids - Book 1) by Judi Fennell

Publication Date: 03/04/2013
Publisher: Penguin Group
Imprint: Berkley Sensation
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 336
ISBN-10: 0425268292
ISBN-13: 978-0425268292

(Received for an honest review from Berkley Sensation)

Purchase: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Book Depository, Indiebound

Judi Fennell on the WEB: website, blog, twitter, facebook, goodreads

Excerpt from, What a Woman Wants, courtesy of Amazon's Look Inside feature.


What happens when three irresistibly sexy brothers lose a poker bet to their enterprising sister? They get hired out for her housecleaning venture. Now, the Manley Maids are at your service. Satisfaction guaranteed. It’s what a woman wants... 

Resort entrepreneur Sean Manley was all set to buy an historic mansion at a great price, making a name for himself while making millions, when the seller and a poker bet change the game. Now he’s in the place as a hunky male maid and there’s one more complication: Livvy Carolla.

The house is Livvy’s inheritance. Her plan? Unload it to the highest bidder and use the cash to start her own bakery business. One look at “the help” and she’s hot to take him with her. Until she finds out he’s got a secret agenda.

But when Sean falls for the free-spirited, strong-willed Livvy, he has new ideas for the estate—and Livvy’s part in it. If all goes well, they’ll both be getting what they want. And then some.


Author, Judi Fennell brings readers the first book in a new series. What a Woman Wants is the first book in the Manley Maids series and features three brothers who have lost a poker hand to their sister and become maids for a month as part of her business. With a premise like that, how could you go wrong? Fennell's sense of humor is on the goofy side and makes for a light-hearted, feel good romance. With more than one sizzling moment, a scavenger hunt that could result in a million dollar estate, and a gaggle of naughty pets, this book has a little something for everyone. Fennell shines with her newest book and will have readers in tears with giggles!

What I liked:

I absolutely loved the premise for this one. The three brothers, Sean, Bryan and Liam Manley should have known better than to risk maid service on a hand of poker, but I'm glad they didn't. Judi Fennell comes up with a plot that is fresh and original. I loved the overall story arc and can't wait to see the experiences of all three brothers unfold. 

What a Woman Wants focuses on Sean's four weeks as maid at a beautiful historic estate. His company buys and sells historic homes and he has had his eye on this one for awhile. When the matron dies and leaves it to her wayward granddaughter, Sean becomes determined to buy it at a reduced rate when said granddaughter cannot complete the task required to inherit. That was before his met Livvy (said granddaughter) and before he realizes that making his dream come true will probably dash her dream of having a bakery and a place for her eccentric group of pets. Fennell does an amazing job of setting all of this up so that these characters get the chance to get to know each other and fall in love.

Sean is a confident business man. He knows what he wants and how to get it. But he morals as well and won't stoop to taking the estate away from Livvy. I liked the fact that it created a bit of conflict because he really wanted this property, but he wasn't willing to compromise what he believed was right. There aren't too many men like that left these days and it was a nice change to see the good guy finishing first this time.

Livvy was a basket case for the most part. She has been left a mansion by a grandmother she hardly knew. She was shipped off to boarding school and never really knew he family and it has made her into a hard nosed, stubborn woman. All she really wants is enough money to start her bakery and settle down with her large array of animals. In order to do that she needs to follows the clues and complete a scavenger hunt that is the stipulation to her inheritance. Fennell writes Livvy as somewhat of a free spirit. She has a deep love for animals and wants to be an organic farmer and baker. I loved her character and thought her issues were compelling and definitely entertaining.

The scavenger hunt was ingenious way to get the lead characters together. Livvy enlists the help of the maid, Sean to help her find the clues, not knowing he may have secret motives. Fennell provides so much humor in this book, I found myself snickering a lot and laughing out loud a few times. The antics of Livvy's animals alone was enough to have readers in stitches. I thought her use of humor really livened up the story and gave is a real heart warming feeling. It was a fun and entertaining read.

What I didn't like:

There was a bit of cat and mouse being played by both Sean and Livvy. They are extremely attracted to each other but they continue to hem and haw around a bit too much for my tastes. Life is short, go for it! LOL! It wasn't a deal breaker, though. This was a great book.

Bottom Line:

Who wouldn't want a hunk to be their maid for a month? With a great premise and loads of humor, this a great feel good romance that will have readers laughing and tearing up by turns. The ending is amazing and I can't wait to see what happens to Sean's brothers.

What a Woman Wants is available NOW from your favorite bookseller.

I'm giving this one 5 out of 5 apples from my book bag!

About the Author:

Judi Fennell has had her nose in a book and her head in some celestial realm all her life, including those early years when her mom would exhort her to “get outside!” instead of watching Bewitched or I Dream of Jeannie on television. So she did—right into Dad’s hammock with her Nancy Drew books. These days she’s more likely to have her nose in her laptop and her head (and the rest of her) at a favorite writing spot, but she’s still reading either her latest manuscript, her friends’ books, or helping authors bring their books to readers with her business. A PRISM and Golden Leaf Award winner, Judi is the author of tongue-in-cheek, lighthearted romantic comedies. She lives in suburban Philadelphia with her own menagerie—which might just include a few of the two-legged kind.

Giveaway Details:

The publisher is sponsoring a giveaway for one copy of What a Woman Wants by Judi Fennell.

~ You must be an email subscriber to participate.
~ US addresses only.
~ The deadline to enter this giveaway is Midnight EST, March 27th.

1. Please leave a comment about what you think of the idea of the Manley Maids?
2. Please fill out the FORM.


traveler said...

Manley Maids sound wonderful. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

Charlotte said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Charlotte said...

Sounds very good.

Jane said...

I like the idea of Manley maids.

Linda Kish said...

Sounds good to me.

Karen B said...

Be still my heart! :)

Anonymous said...


Barbara T. said...

Manly Maids sounds as if it would be fun to read and a manly maid would be great to have cleaning my home.

Anonymous said...

Manly Maids sounds like an interesting concept... and an appealing fantasy!

Bonnie said...

Love it! I think a guy pushing a vacuum is very sexy :)

Nancy Luebke said...

I like the idea but only for short period. They tend to have different priorities.

Martha Lawson said...

I think it is a great idea! I've never read a book that has guys as maids, how cool!! Thanks for the giveaway. (Putting this one the wishlist!!)

Di said...

Sounds like a winner to me - it would certainly draw attention!

Brooke Bumgardner said...

This sounds like a really fun start to a series. I enjoy contemporary romance.

Texas Book Lover said...

It's great idea for loosing a bet like this!

Anita Yancey said...

I think it's a great idea, but I'm not sure it would work out to good.


lag123 said...

I would love a manly maid.

lag110 at mchsi dot com

RAnn said...

Why not? Do they wear cute short shorts?

Natasha said...

I like the idea of manly maids!
Thanks for the chance to win!

bn100 said...

It sounds different

CrystalGB said...

I love the idea of Manly Maids. :)

Anonymous said...

sounds like a great read.

Pat L. said...

Love the concept of Manly Maids - combined with brothers and a wise sister and some poker thrown in.

Chelsea B. said...

HA! Cute idea :-)