Match Game
Beverly Brandt
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Buy *Match Game* by Beverly Brandt online

Match Game
Beverly Brandt
384 pages
June 2006
rated 3 of 5 possible stars

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Match Game is a slight disappointment, the main problem being the need to for its length to be edited down. This is the story Savannah Tyler, who learns during her wedding that she is about to be arrested for money laundering and tax evasion. The premise is great and told in a light-hearted tone; the protagonist decides she needs to get to the bottom of her problems and find out who stole her identity. Her future husband abandons her at the altar, knowing he can’t deal with her or her problems any more. It is this key moment in her life that causes Savannah to change her ways to become a more desirable and exciting woman.

The book starts out with a bang. The wedding is in shambles, and Savannah is taken to jail. But there are too many filler moments after that great start, with so much introspection breaking up the action that the book may lose a number of readers. Because it reads like chick-lit, it should definitely have been a shorter book, cutting to the chase and keeping the pace of the book at a constant run.

Once Savannah gets over the initial shock, she decides she needs to change her image. She feels that her fiancé would never have left her if she were a more outgoing and vivacious sort of woman, the sort of woman that Vanna – the woman who stole her identity - must be. Savannah goes to Florida in search of this mystery woman, to learn how to be more like her and improve her own self-image.

Savannah quits her job and hopes to start fresh in her new home while she searches for Vanna. In the meantime, her luck continues to go downhill as one bad thing after another happens to her as she interviews for jobs (in one scene, she's dressed in a fish costume outside a restaurant) and tries to become the woman she is not. She keeps running into this hunk of a man, Mike, who she is told is gay, but she can't help feeling very attracted to him. His mother tells Savannah that he is a flight attendan,t and she does know he manages the hotel where she is currently living. What she doesn't know is that he is really a U.S. Federal Air Marshall, defending and protecting the skies every day.

Match Game really could have been a great beach read had there been a little bit more editing. The story itself is fun, but unless one has the patience to get past all the extraneous material, I don't see this as a completely enjoyable read. I, for one, lost interest halfway through and could not wait for it to end. The plot itself is clever, and with the right person behind it, I can see it as a very funny movie. What motivated me to finish the book was the fact that I did want to see justice done after everything that Savannah had been through. The reader who does get to that last page will be rewarded, because justice is served after all. Match Game is marginally recommended.

Originally published on Curled Up With A Good Book at © Marie Hashima Lofton, 2006

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