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Reviewed by Melinda Hills for Readers' Favorite
Bailey Meredith is a talented, aspiring interior designer going nowhere in a prestigious firm in Playing House by Laura Chapman. Tired of being a gofer and having her ideas rejected, Bailey takes a chance at an interview and is surprised to be hired as a design consultant for a popular television home makeover show, Playing House with Wilder and Waverly. Although she has never watched such shows, Bailey quickly learns the business - dealing with an up-tight producer, a flighty star, and her handsome husband. Things certainly are not what they seem behind what Bailey always thought of as the ‘smoke and mirrors’ of this type of show, and the secrets become harder and harder to keep. Falling in love with Wilder is not at all anything Bailey is prepared for and, when he reciprocates, the stakes grow awfully high. Will Waverly fire Bailey or are there even worse things that can happen? Toss in her own family history and Bailey has more to consider than she ever thought possible.
For a delightful romance with plenty of twists and turns, as well as a ‘behind the scenes’ look at the popular genre of home makeover television programming, Playing House offers a solid read. Laura Chapman uses wonderful descriptions of the unique Texas scenery and plenty of detail regarding home remodeling and interior design to really draw you into the picture, and the characters come alive through their interactions and dialogue. Even the choice of the book’s title, Playing House, adds to the overall plot and gives a hint at Chapman’s subtle sense of humor. A truly enjoyable story with lots of backstory, character development and human interest, along with wonderful descriptions. I highly recommend this great story as an enjoyable experience with enough depth to be more than just another fluffy romance.