Tag Archives: Kristin Billerbeck

With This Ring, I'm Confused (Kristin Billerbeck)

With This Ring I'm Confused by Kristin BillerbeckRating: [rate 4]

“Confusion is part of God moving you out of a comfort zone. A comfort zone that should cease to exist. God’s way is never the easy path, but it’s by far the most exciting.”
Ashley Stockingdale

She’s got the rock, so when does happily ever after kick in?

At long last, Ashley Stockingdale–patent attorney, fasionista, and homeowner–can finally add “fiancee” to her spirited resume. That means the next four months will be a dizzying and decadent waltz through aisles of Vera Wang, Kenneth Cole, Sheridan sheets, Kate Spade place settings, and Oneida flatware. Well…maybe not.

For starters, the HR department has hired Ashley’s ex-boyfriend (yep, the one who ran off to India with that other woman) as the new director of software. And now her fiance is starting to sound crazy–something about moving across country, to Philadelphia of all places. Worst of all, right before her eyes, Scarlett-I-need-some-Prozac O’Hara is hijacking her wedding plans!

Life for our heroine is spinning from out of control to downright confusing. But whether she makes it to the end of the aisle or not, she’ll never be at a loss for drama!

This is the third and last installment of the Ashley Stockingdale series, and the book (obviously) focuses on Ashley’s wedding preparations. In this novel, it occured to me that Ashley is pretty normal for a protagonist — albeit a bit neurotic sometimes — but she does attract chaos quite often.

Ashley faces a lot of challenges in preparation for her wedding, mostly concentrating on her in-laws who seem to be driven to make Ashley’s most dreamt-of day to be a disaster. Her future sister-in-law (Emily) is determined to make Ashley a laughingstock in her own wedding by following a “theme” while her future mother-in-law (Elaine) is set to make her look unworthy of her son. Add her commitment-phobe ex Seth’s comeback into her life, her fiance Kevin is always out and he has plans of moving to Philadelphia, and the fact that she is broke, how will she plan the day she has been waiting for all her life?!

The characters of the past two novels make a comeback in this last installment, giving a particular familiarity with the wacky Silicon Valley bunch. Although Ashley’s struggles seem too far-fetched at times, it could happen to anyone still.

The Christian point of view of the novel is a bit hard to grasp at first, but then the author shows it all in the end: marriage requires a lot of hard work, and it doesn’t end at the wedding; in fact, it only starts there.

With This Ring, I’m Confused ends with a happily-ever-after-like ending, which is a great feel-good novel to read on a lazy afternoon. :)

She's Out of Control (Kristin Billerbeck)

Rating: [rate 4.5]

She's Out of Control by Kristin BillerbeckEver been on the verge of buying your own engagement ring?

Ashley Stockingdale, the charming, but always-in-over-her-head patent attorney from What A Girl Wants, has finally found the man she wants to marry. But after nine months of dating, it seems her commitment-phobe boyfriend will never use the “M” word. And just when she thinks she’s got it all together, Ashley is having trouble knowing where to put it.

A massive remodeling project, a hyperactive puppy and an ex-boyfriend who wants to be part of her lie again all keep Ashley’s world spinning. As the mayhem escalates, Ashley’s life quickly goes from What A Girl Wants to out of control.

Reading the second book in the Ashley Stockingdale series makes me wonder if the author has read the Shopaholic series and got an idea there or vice versa. I really think Ashley Stockingdale is Becky Bloomwood on the Bible, although she [Ashley] seems to be a lot smarter and deeper than her secular counterpart.

This novel is even a more fun read than the first one: you wonder if there would be any redemption for Seth and Ashley’s relationship which seemed to be going downhill. But then another guy gets in (the same guy from the first novel) and you find yourself rooting for that guy for Ashley and totally disliking Seth for the way he’s acting.

And if there’s such a thing as the most romantic fictional male character in chicklits, Dr. Kevin Novak should win the prize!

The story focused more on how much Ashley liked controlling her life but then God sends a lot of things her way to make her stop wanting control and just leave it all up to Him (hmm, now that’s something I could use). The novel would make you laugh, feel bad for Ashley, want revenge on the other guy and the annoying girl and love Kevin’s ways at the same time wish for someone like him too.

Such a fun fun read, and the ending is just worth everything Ashley went through for the first two novels. Read, read, read! :)

What a Girl Wants (Kristin Billerbeck)

Rating: [rate 4.0]
What A Girl Wants by Kristin BillerbeckEver felt like the last item left on the clearance rack?

As a successful patent attorney, Ashley Stockingdale has all the makings of a perfect catch — the looks, the brains, even a convertible. ut at 31, she’s beginning to wonder if she’s been passed over for good.

Deciding to adopt a new attitude, Ashley suddenly becomes the romantic interest of three men within a matter of days. While her heart enjoys turning the tables on the dating game, the rest of her previously predictable world is being turned upside down. Is it more than Ashley can handle? Or is it exactly what she wants?”

Ever since I read Dreaming in Black and White, I’ve always wanted to read more Christian chicklit. I’ve heard a lot of good reviews for this book, and so when Marvs headed over to the US, I jumped on the chance to get this book from him. :D

What’s fun about What a Girl Wants is the main character, Ashley. Ashely is a devout Christian, and I know that whenever anyone hears that, they already expect her to be holier-than-thou, one who doesn’t care about the world or dressing right or whatnot. But Ashley is none like that — in fact, she may be not how you expect a Christian to be. I don’t mean that in a bad way, of course. Ashley is just as prayerful and just as nice as what you would expect of her, but she can also be quite vain, quite fashion conscious and can still have enough bitterness and envy going on with her — which just makes her more human, more easy to relate to.

Storywise, the novel is a fun read. It can seem a bit exaggerated at how things turned out the way it was for Ashley, and you’d find yourself siding with her at how unfair life became for her. As with her dating life, one of the guys who dates her seem to be the perfect one, with all his manners and good looks, although at the end, she chooses someone she had been noticing before. It felt a bit anticlimatic for me since I like the other guy already. But then, that’s why there’s a sequel. ;)

Anyway, the novel is fun: a lot like Shopaholic, but a bit less shallow. :D And because it talks about singlehood and finding the perfect guy, it becomes an even more appropriate read for singletons like me. ;)