Love, Dreams and Happily-Ever-After
THE SUBSTITUTE BRIDE
Reviewed by Erika Napier
Carol Hutchens brings us a charming first novel about two people caught up in a whirlwind of
The characters of Ellie and Sam are just plain fun. Headstrong, prideful heroine clashes with
the charming, slightly over-bearing hero. This makes for a grand time. Personally, I would love
to see more stories set in the small town of Redbud. The menagerie of characters we meet
intrigued me and I would love to get to know them better. Redbud is a lovely backdrop for the
climax of the novel and a place I wish I could go for a long holiday – the Mexican omelet
experiment sounds tasty!
I cannot wait to see what other treats Ms. Hutchens will be offering.
The Substitute Bride
Blue Ribbon Rating- 4
THE SUBSTITUTE BRIDE by Carol Hutchens is a beautiful and heart warming romance. Ellie
and Sam are wonderful and extremely likeable characters who had this reader cheering them
on all through the book. I was hooked from the beginning of the story by the fake wedding and
enjoyed watching Ellie and Sam fall slowly in love and come to realize that dreams are meant to
be shared. I recommend picking up this book, finding a cozy chair and plan on losing yourself
in a delightful story.
Reviewer: Donna Zapf
Rating: 4 stars
Debut author Carol Hutchens penned a most delectable tale of love discovered and life
changes in her captivating novel THE SUBSTITUTE BRIDE
Ms. Hutchens has created a romantic tale with a unique appealing storyline set in busy New
York City and small town Rosebud, North Carolina with fascinating characters. Ellie is a strong
woman with a goal and a past that colors her look on life. Sam is a sensitive protective man
that is also ruled by his past. Together they realize that the past is not as relevant as they
thought and that love in the present is all that matters.
Kudos to Carol Hutchens for THE SUBSTITUTE BRIDE, the first of many more engaging
novels to come.
Reviewed by: Tangela Williams
Rated: 4 1/2
"The Substitute Bride is an amazing story that romance readers will enjoy. They will fall in
love with the characters as they read this book since the character comes to life on the
pages. Ms. Hutchens has proven what a wonderful up and coming writer she is with this sweet
and fascinating story!"
“It’s good. I stayed up late to finish it.” …Carol’s Mom [this comment is very special. Carol's
mother is now deceased.]
"Carol Hutchens' writing gives us all the warmth of true love and
traditional romance. THE SUBSTITUTE BRIDE is like a perfect wedding
cake: sweet, light and delectably satisfying." …Sierra Donovan, Love On The Air
“I loved your book I just could not stop reading it. I can't wait for the next one.” …Jeanette
“It was great!! The characters are memorable and endearing and the suspense of the dare
keeps you turning page after page. Your style of writing and way with words enables one to
feel as if they really know Ellie and Sam and instantly has you rooting for them both.”
I've just finished reading Carol's SUBSTITUTE BRIDE and enjoyed it very much - my own
signed hardcover copy, no less. Looks very pretty sitting on my keeper shelf alongside my
recently signed Debbie Macomber (50 HARBOUR STREET). Carol, what a terrific premise for
the story. And thanks for the lovely dedication.
…Valerie Parv, Desert Justice, Silhouette Intimate Moments, and The Art Of Writing
Romance, Second Edition.
Carol, I just finished The Substitute Bride and had to come on and tell you how much I
enjoyed it! Truly, it was my Sunday-in-front-of-the-fire treat!
…Holly Jacobs, Confessions Of A Party Crasher, Harlequin Signature Select, and Here With
Me, Silhouette Romance.
I loved the sweet, innocent, and beautifully written romance story. I was in suspense and
unable to put the book down. The one thing I noted throughout the entire story was the
kindness portrayed between Sam and Ellie. Congratulations for your accomplishment and
may you flourish with continued success! …Wanda
What a sweet book! I didn't want to put The Substitute Bride down. I fell in love with Sam from
the first chapter and was amused by Emiline. Native North Carolinians, like myself, should be
thrilled to see North Carolina described so beautifully by Ms. Hutchens. I can't wait to read
more books with appealing main characters and wonderfully described settings..Brandy
The Substitute Bride is an easy and exciting read! I thoroughly enjoyed the book. I was drawn
to both the quaint setting and budding romance of Emiline and Sam. I appreciated the
author's development of character. Emiline's strong sense of self and independence was very
current in keeping with attitude and drive of women today and Sam is the kind of man every
woman dreams of! A must read!...Denise
I enjoyed getting to know Ellie and Sam...two purpose-driven people whose pathways cross.
The electricity between them is immediate, even though they try to deny it.
The descriptions of North Carolina, especially the Pilot Mountain area, will make you want to
visit the state. The author paints lovely pictures both of the countryside and the people. You
will want to meet Ellie and Sam and will be cheering for them at the end of the book!
Ms. Hutchens is a newly published writer of romantic fiction. I look forward to reading her next
book...and her next book...and her next book...Joan Allred