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First Lady

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The beautiful young widow of the President of the United States thought she was free of the White House, but circumstances have forced her back into the role of the First Lady. Not for long, however, because she's made up her mind to escape -- if only for a few days -- so she can live the life of an ordinary person. All she needs is the perfect disguise...and she's just fo The beautiful young widow of the President of the United States thought she was free of the White House, but circumstances have forced her back into the role of the First Lady. Not for long, however, because she's made up her mind to escape -- if only for a few days -- so she can live the life of an ordinary person. All she needs is the perfect disguise...and she's just found it. As an entire nation searches for her, the First Lady teams up with an infuriatingly secretive, quietly seductive stranger and two adorable little orphaned girls in need of a family. And all together they head out across the heartland chasing their own American Dream -- on a wild journey, adventure, and glorious rebirth.Author Biography: Susan Elizabeth Phillips, soared into the New York Times bestseller list with her 1998 smash Dream A Little Dream, and remained there through two subsequent novels, Lady Be Good and First Lady. In addition to being the only two-time recipient of the Romance Writers of America's prestigious Favorite Book of the Year award, she also holds Romantic Times Career Achievement Award. Susan delights fans by touching hearts as well as funny bones with her wonderfully whimsical and modern fairy tales. A resident of the Chicago suburbs, she is a wife and the mother of two grown sons.


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The beautiful young widow of the President of the United States thought she was free of the White House, but circumstances have forced her back into the role of the First Lady. Not for long, however, because she's made up her mind to escape -- if only for a few days -- so she can live the life of an ordinary person. All she needs is the perfect disguise...and she's just fo The beautiful young widow of the President of the United States thought she was free of the White House, but circumstances have forced her back into the role of the First Lady. Not for long, however, because she's made up her mind to escape -- if only for a few days -- so she can live the life of an ordinary person. All she needs is the perfect disguise...and she's just found it. As an entire nation searches for her, the First Lady teams up with an infuriatingly secretive, quietly seductive stranger and two adorable little orphaned girls in need of a family. And all together they head out across the heartland chasing their own American Dream -- on a wild journey, adventure, and glorious rebirth.Author Biography: Susan Elizabeth Phillips, soared into the New York Times bestseller list with her 1998 smash Dream A Little Dream, and remained there through two subsequent novels, Lady Be Good and First Lady. In addition to being the only two-time recipient of the Romance Writers of America's prestigious Favorite Book of the Year award, she also holds Romantic Times Career Achievement Award. Susan delights fans by touching hearts as well as funny bones with her wonderfully whimsical and modern fairy tales. A resident of the Chicago suburbs, she is a wife and the mother of two grown sons.

30 review for First Lady

  1. 4 out of 5

    Mo

    My re-read was WONDERFUL! I loved it. ============================================== ORIGINAL REVIEW: Ok, I am going to sound like Karen and Sharon now - a broken record by saying how much I love this author and these books. Mat Jorik. You hunk of Slovak manhood. No bloody Slovak hunks working in the building I work in even though the Slovakian translation division is working there. This was a re-read and as I was reading, it all came back to me. I adored it. This author is so good, her wit, humour, My re-read was WONDERFUL! I loved it. ============================================== ORIGINAL REVIEW: Ok, I am going to sound like Karen and Sharon now - a broken record by saying how much I love this author and these books. Mat Jorik. You hunk of Slovak manhood. No bloody Slovak hunks working in the building I work in even though the Slovakian translation division is working there. This was a re-read and as I was reading, it all came back to me. I adored it. This author is so good, her wit, humour, love shines through on the pages of her books. She is somebody I would love to meet in real life. "A perfect rose for a perfect lady." Mat was brought up in a family with seven younger sisters. Yes, you heard me correctly, SEVEN. No wonder he wanted to play the playboy lifestyle and just be a man's man. It was beautiful to take a journey through the Mid West with this gypsy family and their wonderful winnebago, Mabel. It must be horrible to be in the limelight like Nealy was and have no privacy and have to live up to exceptions 24/7. I would hate it. Lucy, it's tough being a teenager. "Sometimes I dream about this, just holding your hand." She shivered. “Just looking at you shines sunlight on every moment I live. Before I knew you, I wasn't even alive. I thought I knew what I wanted, but I didn't have any idea. You barged into my life and changed it forever. I love you, I admire you, I lust after you, I adore you...” "You're my resting place." I could waffle on about this one forever but better shut up. I love this author. Her books are all five star reads for me and if you haven't read her books, get to it. NOW. Nealy. Be Happy!!

  2. 4 out of 5

    ♥Sharon♥

    “A perfect rose for a perfect Lady.” Gosh, I really, really loved this book. First Lady just might be my favorite of this series thus far. This isn’t what I would call a traditional series. There isn’t a connection from book to book. Though one would think so when you see #1, #2, #3 etc. So if you are thinking of giving this author a try, all these books can be read as standalones and read in any order. It never takes long for SEP to draw me into her stories. There is no delay in making “A perfect rose for a perfect Lady.” Gosh, I really, really loved this book. First Lady just might be my favorite of this series thus far. This isn’t what I would call a traditional series. There isn’t a connection from book to book. Though one would think so when you see #1, #2, #3 etc. So if you are thinking of giving this author a try, all these books can be read as standalones and read in any order. It never takes long for SEP to draw me into her stories. There is no delay in making a connection with the characters or figuring out whether the story line is going to work for me. She has the ability to peak my curiosity early on and I just love that. In First Lady we get to meet Cornelia Litchfield Case, who is a First Lady and Mathias Jorik who is a Journalist and is “dealing” with his past. Both Carnelia and Mat are at turning points (kind of) in their lives and when their paths cross they start this little adventure that for one is a perfect distraction and for the other is somewhat of an inconvenience. Mathias (Mat) Jorik ~ He was tall, dark and handsome. He was also very sweet (he won’t admit to it), sexy and funny. Mat was trying to get his life back on track as a Journalist and while he found himself in a bit of a predicament, he was going to make things work for him. Nealy Case would make getting his life back on track a little more difficult though. But I guess you could say that about Lucy and Button’s too. :) Cornelia (Nealy) Litchfield Case~ was a princess, a very kind, warm and graceful one. Nealy was trying to escape her life as the First Lady which isn’t an easy task. Holding that title was wonderful honor and she knew that. She also knew she needed some freedom from it too. Nealy had a plan that she knew wasn’t perfect though it would buy her that freedom she wanted. But she had to make a deal that she wasn’t sure about but it would be a deal that would be hard to walk away from. This adventure that brings Mat and Nealy together revolves around two other wonderful characters. One is Lucy, who is a bitter, a little misunderstood teenager. There wasn’t much she was happy about and I didn’t blame her. At 14 she had a lot resting on her shoulders. Her actions might have been a bit hurtful but her heart was in the right. She wanted happiness too. If not for her, for her baby sister Butt….Button…..Beatrice. And this little bundle is Butt. Mat referred to her as a “demon baby”. Come on, does she look like a demon to you? Butt was the one that Lucy needs the assurance for. She wants Butt to have a family and people to love her. She wants that for herself too but she doesn’t want to wish for too much. This was such a tender story. It was a little sad too. My heartstrings were tugged on many times. There so many moments that I enjoyed. And normally most of my love goes to the two main characters but in this one I found myself loving Lucy just a little more. There was something about her. She was such a strong young lady just looking for her rainbow. If you are a fan of Susan Elizabeth Phillips and haven’t read this yet it is an absolute must that you do. If you have never read a book of hers then pick this one up. You will not be disappointed.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Karen

    5 STARS I don’t know how she does it. But she does. I know I sound like a broken record… but, I LOVED IT! This book had a bit of a different storyline. At first, I have to admit, I was skeptical that even SEP could create a feasible romance out of a grief-stricken First Lady, but as the story unfolded, I was just captivated by these endearing characters. Each and every one capturing my heart with their quirky personalities, and the heart wrenching situations that followed them through life. Cornel 5 STARS I don’t know how she does it. But she does. I know I sound like a broken record… but, I LOVED IT! This book had a bit of a different storyline. At first, I have to admit, I was skeptical that even SEP could create a feasible romance out of a grief-stricken First Lady, but as the story unfolded, I was just captivated by these endearing characters. Each and every one capturing my heart with their quirky personalities, and the heart wrenching situations that followed them through life. Cornelia Litchfield Case, known to her close friends as Nealy , was born and bred for the political life. Growing up as the only daughter to the Vice President of the United States, how could she be otherwise. Always taught to carry herself with grace and poise, she was the ultimate icon for the American blue blood. So when she married Dennis Case, it was no surprise that she would become the nation’s most beloved and admired First Lady to date. But when her husband, the current President of the United States was assassinated, it turned her world upside down. But it also opened up a opportunity she hadn’t even known that she’d yearned for. Freedom. And just when she thought she could step away from the spotlight, and finally get the freedom she longed for, it was once again snatched away by the forces that had been running her life for as long as she could remember. Well… not anymore. She had a plan. To finally get the freedom and anonymity she longed for… at least for a while. What she wasn’t expecting though, was the crazy band of travelers that would join her on this flight for freedom she would take. Mathias ‘Mat’ Jorik a dis-heartened journalist on a hiatus from his less than satisfying but highly successful career as a tabloid television producer, was looking for a story that would earn him back his credibility as a writer. But a huge road-block has just been thrown in his face… in the form of an orphaned fourteen year-old girl, and an adorable but very unhappy blue-eyed Demon in a diaper. “What’s her name?” Another pause. “Butt.” “You’re a real comedian, aren’t you?” “I’m not the one who named her.” And if that isn’t enough drama to ruin his day… enter Cornelia Case. “The Angel of Baby Death…” This is such an endearing story. The drama runs deep. It is a sad story really, that turns out quite funny and really happy in the end. the dialogue is fabulous. The characters are all so incredibly sweet. You can’t help but fall for each and every one. His lips brushed her hair. “Will it make you feel better if I fight with you?” “I think so.” “Okay. Take off your clothes.” If only it were that easy. She sighed. “We can’t solve this with sex.” “Take ‘em off anyway. I need to be serviced.” “Serviced? Is that any way to talk to a First Lady?” “You’re my First Lady, and I’m just getting started.” Mat is so surly and sarcastic. The perfect cynical journalist, dis-heartened by his job, and his big demanding family of seven sisters. He’s had about all the drama he can take. But somehow it keeps following him around like a lost puppy. And just when he achieves everything he’s always dreamed about, he realizes that it’s only left him empty and yearning. “You make me see the world in new ways. You're the first thing my heart greets when I wake up in the morning. You're the last thing I see in my mind before I fall asleep.” “Just looking at you shines sunlight on every moment I live. Before I knew you, I wasn't even alive. I thought I knew what I wanted, but I didn't have any idea. You barged into my life and changed it forever. I love you, I admire you, I lust after you, I adore you...” Loved the book. It is part of the Wynette Texas Series, but it reads like a stand-alone. I’m thinking the connection to the series will reveal itself later on. I am looking forward to the next book in the series. I haven’t read a bad SEP book yet. This one had me laughing out loud, and wanting to post updates every other page. So… what’s new. And as usual a lovely Epilogue for the HEA!!! Enjoy!

  4. 4 out of 5

    Kathleen

    Story Rating ~ 5 Stars! Hero Rating ~ 5 Stars Heroine Rating ~ 5 Stars Secondary Character Ratings ~ 5 Stars Romance Rating ~ 5 Stars Heat Level ~ 2.75 Stars Ending ~ 5 Stars Overall Rating ~ 10 STARS! Because I can and because it deserves it! Why oh why did I wait so long to give a SEP book a try? I’ve had friends ragging on me for YEARS to read one. As a matter of fact, I never even read a review for one of her books until I read Sharon’s and Karen’s, which both reviews were for this book. So I though Story Rating ~ 5 Stars! Hero Rating ~ 5 Stars Heroine Rating ~ 5 Stars Secondary Character Ratings ~ 5 Stars Romance Rating ~ 5 Stars Heat Level ~ 2.75 Stars Ending ~ 5 Stars Overall Rating ~ 10 STARS! Because I can and because it deserves it! Why oh why did I wait so long to give a SEP book a try? I’ve had friends ragging on me for YEARS to read one. As a matter of fact, I never even read a review for one of her books until I read Sharon’s and Karen’s, which both reviews were for this book. So I though what the heck, I’ll give it a go. And you know what? I LOVED EVERY MOMENT and I LOVED EVERY CHARACTER! I’m not going to go into the details of this story, just my feelings because that’s the way I roll. Mat, what an excellent character he was. He only did one teeny tinny thing that I thought was wrong, other than that, I loved how even though he did not want any woman in his life, he was surrounded by them. The way he treated them was really something special considering the circumstances. He was protective, caring and sexy as hell. Nealy, what a wonderful character she was. I could totally understand why she ran. I loved how amazed she was about everything that we take for granted. How she took care of and how she treated Button and Lucy. She was smart, witty, caring and fun. Lucy, she was a little spitfire. She really pulled on my heartstrings. I could feel how starved for love she was and how much it meant when someone was kind to her. Her matchmaking ways added so much to this book. But most of all, the love she had for her little sister button was something to behold. Butt, AKA Button, AKA Beatrice, AKA Tracey, whew! That child sure had a bunch of names. She stole my heart with her cute and sassy ways. I adored how she called Mat Da and Nealy Ma. How she would bite Mat, hahahahaha, LOVED HER! The sexual tension was really high between Mat and Nealy right from the start. Things did not heat up right away with the children and all. There were a few sexy times between them but nothing too descriptive. I usually like my romances to be scorchers but with a story and characters like this, I could care less. Every once in a while it’s refreshing to read a romance based on story line and characters alone. Of course with most romances everything does not go perfectly. Mat made a HUGE mistake and the way he went about fixing it and the things he said were the stuff that romantic dreams are made of. In the end the epilogue had me all watery eyed with tears of joy. Things work out better than I could have ever imagined. WHAT AN AMAZING READ! So for all my SEP loving friends, when leaving a comment on my review PLEASE recommend me your favorite SEP read, I may just give it a go.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Anzu The Great Destroyer

    *excitement excitement* new (for me) SEP book! But wait… something’s happening – wait! What the hell are you doing? Kids?? Gah! Get them off my precious book! GET THEM OOOOOOOFF!!!!! *jumps out of the window* *after one week in the hospital* *cough* I’m ok, just minor injuries. What the hell??? Why the kids my dear SEP? Why did you ruin the book??? Whyyyyyy???? In case you’re new to my awesome reviewing you must know one simple and important thing about me: Go ahead. Ask me why! Wh- Why??? You dare as *excitement excitement* new (for me) SEP book! But wait… something’s happening – wait! What the hell are you doing? Kids?? Gah! Get them off my precious book! GET THEM OOOOOOOFF!!!!! *jumps out of the window* *after one week in the hospital* *cough* I’m ok, just minor injuries. What the hell??? Why the kids my dear SEP? Why did you ruin the book??? Whyyyyyy???? In case you’re new to my awesome reviewing you must know one simple and important thing about me: Go ahead. Ask me why! Wh- Why??? You dare ask me why??? I’ll tell you why! Kids are soul sucking demons! They will make you hurt, mock you, steal your food and pee on your favorite carpet! Plus they drool and stink. They pull your hair, pee on you, and vomit on your great grandma’s ashes! Vile disgusting creatures… *end of emotional breakdown* So yes, the main reason for my score is this. The other reasons will come after this awesome gif of molested cats! [image error] Now what did I like about this book? *scratches chin* I liked Mat because he shared my kid hatred and he had some pretty good lines. But in the end he fell in love with them (the loser) so he’s surely not my favorite character. Lucy (surprise surprise) was actually my favorite because she f*cked everyone off. I respect that in a person. I also liked the typical awesomeness of SEP’s writing but unfortunately the story didn’t get to me. And that’s it with the likes! Dislikes? Nealy unfortunately didn’t work for me. She was just too.. what word to use? Blah? Meh? Close enough. Her child trauma (baby killer or whatever she called herself – wtf??) was stupid and her character wasn’t defined enough. Same goes to Mat actually. The story was too homey, jolly, patriotic and boring. Sadly… it just had a nice romantic part at the end but it still didn’t do the trick for me. So that’s it! The neutral score for this one: three severed children heads. Muahahahahaha!!!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Amber

    SEP for President! Susan Elizabeth Phillips can do no wrong. Another fabulous book by a phenomenal writer. First Lady is the story of widowed First Lady Nealy Litchfield Case and her escape from DC to go on an unaccompanied tour of the USA. As the daughter of the former Vice President, she has always been in the political public eye and wants a taste of a normal life. While on her journey, she meets up with a grumpy journalist and his 2 (possible) children. Another book full of laughs and heart. SEP for President! Susan Elizabeth Phillips can do no wrong. Another fabulous book by a phenomenal writer. First Lady is the story of widowed First Lady Nealy Litchfield Case and her escape from DC to go on an unaccompanied tour of the USA. As the daughter of the former Vice President, she has always been in the political public eye and wants a taste of a normal life. While on her journey, she meets up with a grumpy journalist and his 2 (possible) children. Another book full of laughs and heart. This story is inspirational as much as it is touching. The quotes that really resonated with me were Nealy’s political quotes. Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have someone in the White House like her today!! She’s the complete opposite of Trump. “Cynicism is nothing more than an excuse for underachievement. It’s easier to criticize others than to do your part to fix a tough problem.” “Cynicism gives decent people an out. They can assume a posture of moral superiority without ever getting their hands dirty coming up with real solutions.” “Partisan politics have stolen our politicians backbones.” While I’m mentioning political quotes here, this wasn’t really a political book. It’s a love story and a story of personal growth, which is what all of SEP’s books are about. I listened to the audiobook and loved it so much. It was narrated by Anna Fields/Kate Fleming. I believe it was one of the last SEP books she narrated before she died. Such a shame! She was such a talent.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Jan

    4 to 4.5 stars. A lovely story about a fictional widowed First Lady of the USA who is so frustrated by her life that she disguises herself and takes off in secret from some private 'alone time'. The political overtones of the book are a little out of date now, with President Trump in the Whitehouse and a different political landscape these days. But it's easily possible to put all of that aside and just enjoy this book for what it is - a charming and romantic fantasy road trip. Nealy manages to 4 to 4.5 stars. A lovely story about a fictional widowed First Lady of the USA who is so frustrated by her life that she disguises herself and takes off in secret from some private 'alone time'. The political overtones of the book are a little out of date now, with President Trump in the Whitehouse and a different political landscape these days. But it's easily possible to put all of that aside and just enjoy this book for what it is - a charming and romantic fantasy road trip. Nealy manages to give her Secret Service minders the slip, and is enjoying her journey through America's heartland. She is loving all of the little day-to-day things that in her usual life as a famous person she does not get to experience. Then she meets up with Mat Jorik and his two 'daughters'. From then on, most of the book is an amusing and entertaining road trip with four very different people, who don't always see eye-to-eye. There are some funny situations, some hilarious one-liners, and a cast of eccentric secondary characters. The two girls are both delightful - the sullen but secretly loving teen and the extremely cute baby/toddler. Inevitably the Secret Service catches up with Nealy and the game is up. Some hard decisions have to be made about the four people who have come to care so much about each other on their road trip. But the ending of the book is done well in my opinion. Within the fictional landscape of its setting, the ending feels right, and is very satisfying, kind of in the way of a movie happy ending that you know isn't real but you love it anyway. This book forms a part of the Wynette, Texas series, because here we first meet the teenaged Lucy Jorik who features later in Call Me Irresistible and The Great Escape. But for those who don't wish to read the rest of the series, this one can easily be read as a standalone. And even though it was first published in 2000, it is still a very enjoyable read in 2018.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer

    ★★★★½ I love, love, love Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck's 1953 movie Roman Holiday. So imagine my very pleasant surprise when I began to realize that First Lady is nothing short of a modern day, grown up, retelling of one of my favorite films. Sigh... The widowed first lady of the United States White House desperately needs a respite from her role. She just needs a bit of ordinary for a while - her duty to America is draining the life out of her. But if she wants a break, she has to make it happe ★★★★½ I love, love, love Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck's 1953 movie Roman Holiday. So imagine my very pleasant surprise when I began to realize that First Lady is nothing short of a modern day, grown up, retelling of one of my favorite films. Sigh... The widowed first lady of the United States White House desperately needs a respite from her role. She just needs a bit of ordinary for a while - her duty to America is draining the life out of her. But if she wants a break, she has to make it happen herself. She has to escape...literally! Susan Elizabeth Phillips offers enough original details to make First Lady its very own story but the subtle similarities between the two storylines were such fun! It's funny, sexy, and incredibly sweet, with an appropriate touch of patriotism. If you're a fan of Susan Elizabeth Phillips or if you happen to enjoy the Oscar-winning film as much as I do, then check out First Lady. It's a winner! My favorite quote: "'You bought white underwear.' 'Only because I wanted to irritate you. If you hadn't been there, I would have chosen something more exotic.' 'Like what?' 'Like none of your business.' 'No, I'm serious. This is an important question. The kind of underwear a woman buys reflects her character.' 'I can't wait to hear this.' 'That's why the idea of you wearing white panties bothers me.' 'I seem to be having trouble keeping up.' 'Isn't it obvious? That's the favorite underwear of female serial killers.'" First Lady is the fourth installment in Susan Elizabeth Phillips's adult contemporary romance series titled Wynette, Texas. The series contains the following installments as of January 2016. In my opinion, they can each be read in any order as standalone novels. #1-Fancy Pants #2-Lady Be Good #3-Glitter Baby #4-First Lady #4.5-My Secret Service Valentine #5-What I Did for Love #6-Call Me Irresistible #7-The Great Escape

  9. 4 out of 5

    Dija

    I want to become Susan Elizabeth Phillips when I grow up some more. She writes the sort of books I really, really wish I had written. Not because they're sheer genius, or the characters are phenomenal, or the plot's epic, or anything extraordinary like that, but simply because they comfort me. They actually matter and make a difference in my opinion of little things like love, happily ever afters, second chances, and the power of fate. Call me cheesy, but it's true. I read SEP's novels, and they I want to become Susan Elizabeth Phillips when I grow up some more. She writes the sort of books I really, really wish I had written. Not because they're sheer genius, or the characters are phenomenal, or the plot's epic, or anything extraordinary like that, but simply because they comfort me. They actually matter and make a difference in my opinion of little things like love, happily ever afters, second chances, and the power of fate. Call me cheesy, but it's true. I read SEP's novels, and they instantly put me in a good mood. No matter how tough or tiring the day is, SEP never fails to put a smile on my face. The world needs more books like these. Books that serve a purpose, make a difference, have some sort of moral story as well. Now, about First Lady in particular. I began the book praying for a swoon-worthy hero, because I didn't find him in the first 3 books, and ended the book head over heels in love with Mat. He's such a man! And I don't say that lightly. There's nothing feminine about him at all, but he still manages to be sweet and emotional when the situation calls for it. A more perfect fictional man I have yet to come across. Nealy is also an extremely capable and admirable woman, but all my love is still reserved for Mat, which is a nice change from the first 3 books where I rated the books mostly because the heroine was so wonderful. Lucy and Button complete this impossible family. Lucy's the kid I wish I'd been and Button's the kid I wish I had. I'm so glad there will be more of Lucy in Call Me Irresistible. I could go on and on about how much I loved this book, and how I loved reading it even more, but I'll stop now and let this suffice: Favorite Quotes: 1. The final few years before his escape from the Hell House of Women had been especially bad. His father had died by then, putting an end to the fantasy Mat had entertained that he'd come back and take charge. The girls were growing older and more temperamental. Somebody was always getting ready to have her period, going through her period, getting over her period, or sneaking into his room late at night in quiet hysterics because her period was late, and he was supposed to figure out what to do about it. 2. "You bought white underwear." "Only because I wanted to irritate you. If you hadn't been there, I would have chosen something more exotic." "Like what?" "Like none of your business." "No, I'm serious. This is an important question. The kind of underwear a woman buys reflects her character." "I can't wait to hear this." "That's why the idea of you wearing white panties bothers me." "I seem to be having trouble keeping up." "Isn't it obvious? That's the favorite underwear of female serial killers." 3. How could he have been so blind? From the moment they'd met, he'd been drawn to her like hot fudge to ice cream. He'd never enjoyed a woman's company more, never been so aroused by one. And not just physically, but intellectually and emotionally. If some evil genie came up to him right this minute and said he could have Nealy forever, but they could never make love again, he'd still take her. And what kind of thing was that? He had it bad. 4.5/5 stars

  10. 4 out of 5

    Ingie

    5 Stars - A perfect cozy, fun and lovely romance ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Gosh, a SEP romance is always a good book choice. This one (#3 in the Wynette, Texas series) is, in my opinion (right now at least), one of her very best. A First Lady (Cornelia Nealy Litchfield Case a widow and former US President wife), a wonderful (Matt Joric a journalist) grumpy tall gorgeous (very sexy and manly) SEP-books hero, a adorable cute kid (Baby Butt) and a responsible, hopeful and dearly, but in the start obstinate, poor mo 5 Stars - A perfect cozy, fun and lovely romance ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Gosh, a SEP romance is always a good book choice. This one (#3 in the Wynette, Texas series) is, in my opinion (right now at least), one of her very best. A First Lady (Cornelia Nealy Litchfield Case a widow and former US President wife), a wonderful (Matt Joric a journalist) grumpy tall gorgeous (very sexy and manly) SEP-books hero, a adorable cute kid (Baby Butt) and a responsible, hopeful and dearly, but in the start obstinate, poor motherless teen girl (Lucy 14) and it all will be a hilarious emotional adventure story. — Loved every single minute. Heartwarming good romance stuff ... Add a always FABULOUS audiobook narrator in Anna Fields. ❤️ I LIKE - ... SEP romances so very much!! Read May 24, 2020

  11. 4 out of 5

    Julz

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. 3.5 stars. I rounded up because I really liked the beginning. I got sucked in listening to this story on Book-Radio in my car (Yay SiriusXM!) This is the epitome of all things sweet and nice, which would normally give me a sick headache. However, I like this author's writing (the two I've read), which has a comic slant, so I put up with things like the sugary comments from the uber-tall(6'6"), uber-beta hero such as "We fit like hot fudge on ice cream" and him being addicted to root beer (UGH!!! 3.5 stars. I rounded up because I really liked the beginning. I got sucked in listening to this story on Book-Radio in my car (Yay SiriusXM!) This is the epitome of all things sweet and nice, which would normally give me a sick headache. However, I like this author's writing (the two I've read), which has a comic slant, so I put up with things like the sugary comments from the uber-tall(6'6"), uber-beta hero such as "We fit like hot fudge on ice cream" and him being addicted to root beer (UGH!!! Grow some nads, dude!). Plus, there was the most sickening declaration of love by the hero, complete with him imagining them growing old and grey in rocking chairs. (Seriously!?! Totally, made my ears bleed and my eyes roll out of my head--maybe I'm too cynical ;D) The epilogue? Waaaaayyyy over the top PC but not surprising (with scenes that are no longer historically correct, interestingly enough.) That being said, it's actually an ok book. I definitely agree with another reviewer who gave the beginning 5 stars, but the ending--not so much. At the start, the heroine had run off from the White House and was living incognito when she hooks up with the hero and the two kids he was trying to dump onto their grandmother. Lots of saucy; lots of cuteness and funny. Then the author jumps track towards the end, with the heroine diving head first and submerging herself in the very existence she fought against so fervently. But she had to have her epilogue (view spoiler)[she ran for president (hide spoiler)] , so what's a girl to do. Definitely a feminist, I-am-woman-hear-me-roar kind of book. PS, can anyone tell me why this story is labeled Wynette, Texas #4? They never touched foot in Texas the entire book. Hmmm?

  12. 4 out of 5

    Christel

    Really cute story. Mat worked in LA for a tabloid TV show and he was sick of it. He wanted to get back to newsprint in the worst way. Well a few years ago he met and married a women named Sandi, they soon divorced but she kept his last name. Well lo and behold he finds out that he now has 2 daughters, one 14, Lucy, and the other 6 months, Button. Well Sandi dies in an automobile accident along with Button's true father. But Mat is on the birth certificates as father for both girls. Cornelia Case, Really cute story. Mat worked in LA for a tabloid TV show and he was sick of it. He wanted to get back to newsprint in the worst way. Well a few years ago he met and married a women named Sandi, they soon divorced but she kept his last name. Well lo and behold he finds out that he now has 2 daughters, one 14, Lucy, and the other 6 months, Button. Well Sandi dies in an automobile accident along with Button's true father. But Mat is on the birth certificates as father for both girls. Cornelia Case, is the widow of Assinated President Dennis Case and is not unfortunately the first lady to his successor. And she is sick of it. Her marriage was an actual lie and she is tired of being in the prublic limelight. So what do she do, she runs away. These 4 people meet after unfortunate circumstances happen at a truck stop in Pennslyvania. I really enjoyed the way the author seemed to research all of her characters and the storyline is really good. How this one lady evades the Secret Service and all of the Unted States Media for one week is pretty cool.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Twiggy

    I read this immediately after finishing the chicago stars series ( which I loved) and was a little disappointed. The story line involving the first lady was unusual and the interaction between Neally, Lucy and button was nicely written. Think roman holiday set in an American camper van with a difficult teenager, a vomiting baby and a surly romantic lead, hiding the fact that he is a journalist. I think my problem was that I did not really believe in the romance between Neally and Jorik. They onl I read this immediately after finishing the chicago stars series ( which I loved) and was a little disappointed. The story line involving the first lady was unusual and the interaction between Neally, Lucy and button was nicely written. Think roman holiday set in an American camper van with a difficult teenager, a vomiting baby and a surly romantic lead, hiding the fact that he is a journalist. I think my problem was that I did not really believe in the romance between Neally and Jorik. They only spent a week together and then months apart, before he realised that he was in 'love'. Also Neally started off as such a weak, naive and downtrodden character, it was hard to believe that she would ever end up as president. Pleasant but not a stand out read. Probably one for the charity box.

  14. 4 out of 5

    CD {Boulder Blvd}

    This was just "too" for me: Too unrealistic, too sappy, too contrived, too difficult to buy into the story line. It had its moments but just didn't work for me.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Jacqueline J

    The first half of this book was 5 stars. The second half really pulled it down. I loved the way the heroine escaped the White House and went across country with the hero and the 2 girls. I loved the way she let herself be rude and snippy and normal and how she saw herself so clearly and enjoyed doing it. Great stuff. She just wanted to live a normal life so why at the end did she go back and run for senate and eventually the White House? Seemed a bit like a bait and switch. The author basically The first half of this book was 5 stars. The second half really pulled it down. I loved the way the heroine escaped the White House and went across country with the hero and the 2 girls. I loved the way she let herself be rude and snippy and normal and how she saw herself so clearly and enjoyed doing it. Great stuff. She just wanted to live a normal life so why at the end did she go back and run for senate and eventually the White House? Seemed a bit like a bait and switch. The author basically said: Just kidding. She doesn't really hate public life! Haha fooled you. So we end up with 3 stars. And a slightly bad taste in my mouth. I will say however that the hero sure gave a humdinger of a speech to get her back in the end after the obligatory parting.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Mandy

    I really loved this one! I think I say this with every new Susan Elizabeth Phillips book I read but I'm pretty sure this one is my favorite. The things Mat says at the end...

  17. 4 out of 5

    Dee

    3.5 Stars Enjoyed this but really cannot understand why it had been linked to the Wynette?!!

  18. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    Many women discover romance novels through their female relatives. So did I. When I was about 14 years old and on summer vacation, my mom lent me this book to read. I loved it. It stayed in my collection, even tough I haven't reread it until now. Even with all the purging I've been doing nowadays, this book stayed, along with very few other Romance Novels I had in print, becaue of the very fond memories I had attached to it. A couple of weeks ago, I decided to get rid of the physical books and bu Many women discover romance novels through their female relatives. So did I. When I was about 14 years old and on summer vacation, my mom lent me this book to read. I loved it. It stayed in my collection, even tough I haven't reread it until now. Even with all the purging I've been doing nowadays, this book stayed, along with very few other Romance Novels I had in print, becaue of the very fond memories I had attached to it. A couple of weeks ago, I decided to get rid of the physical books and buy the ebooks, so I may reread them. I was nervous about it, because I have changed in the last 16 years and I was afraid I wouldn't like these books as much as I used to. I decided the first trip down memonry lane would be the first romance novel I've ever read: First Lady. And boy, am I glad I finally gave this a second reading. I LOVED it from beginning till the end. I remembered the beginning quite well, but I forgot a lot about the middle - and the end. I laughed and squeeled with delight and I've cried with heartache while reading this book. It is amazing to me, how this book moved me, probably more then when I read it all those years ago. And I love how it still hold up after 19 years since being first published! I hope all my rereadings of my old favorites will go over like this, because it was a marvelous experience and I still can't get over how much I enjoyed this book! Because - as the outhor stated on her website - Life's Too Short To Read Depressing Books. AMEN!

  19. 4 out of 5

    Jacob Proffitt

    I would review this on the eve of the worst presidential election I can recall. Okay, first the series. This is part of the Wynette, Texas series the same way the previous one was: i.e. a kid present in this one grows up to feature in one of the later books that actually has anything at all to do with Wynette, Texas. As such, you really, really don't have to have read any of the actual Wynette books before this one. Unlike the previous one, this one didn't suck. There are a lot of potential backg I would review this on the eve of the worst presidential election I can recall. Okay, first the series. This is part of the Wynette, Texas series the same way the previous one was: i.e. a kid present in this one grows up to feature in one of the later books that actually has anything at all to do with Wynette, Texas. As such, you really, really don't have to have read any of the actual Wynette books before this one. Unlike the previous one, this one didn't suck. There are a lot of potential backgrounds for heroines, but I don't recall any other contemporary romances that feature a (former, obviously) First Lady of the United States. I mean, that's just so very, very unlikely. Particularly if she's going to be under 45. There have been exactly two First Ladies that young in the last century (and one of those was 44, the other was Jackie Kennedy). So SEP is being daring. She's also creating an alternate universe and that has its own challenges. Fortunately, SEP pulls off the daring pretty well. She doesn't bother explaining how such a young couple were elected (boring and unimportant) and she doesn't bother explaining how Nealy's father could be a former vice-president we'd never heard of while still maintaining all the surrounding politics more or less in tact. Which means I was able to be pulled into this story without straining credulity beyond the setup. Nealy feels like a woman pushed too far who just needs a chance to be on her own for a while, out of the public eye. I like how smart she is to get there and how realistic she is about how long she can stay hidden. At any rate, Nealy is just full of win and I loved getting to know her and the pressures she is under. Better, I liked seeing how she was taking this time to figure out how she'd be able to go back without breaking again. Particularly poignant (in a way that could have come off as check-your-privilege moments but didn't) was her delight in every-day things that she'd been denied by her upbringing and expectations. And I liked Mat, too. I liked that he had his own reasons to hide who he is in a way that made him more, rather than less, authentic. And while I had a tough time with his resistance to the needs of two children, I at least understood where he was coming from and why he'd feel that way. And I'm pretty certain I'll always fall for the big tough guy who can't help protecting and helping those more vulnerable than himself. Yeah, he's resistant, but watching him fall for the kids in spite of himself was a lot of fun. I had two problems with the book and one real win. The win was when Nealy made the choice to (view spoiler)[adopt the two kids, even though it'd seriously complicate her future life. The best part of that is how careful she was explaining to Lucy the consequences of that choice, complete with the illustration of the press/security circus that was happening even as she did so. I love how she explained her love for the girls even as she had to explain why Lucy might not want to make that choice. It was a poignant moment and, being me, tears flowed. (hide spoiler)] . But problems. They both happen after the big win and dragged a probably-round-to-five down to four stars. The first is Mat and (view spoiler)[being unaware he was in love. For three months. That was beyond lame and a degree of un-self-aware that frankly, strains credulity. I'm sorry, but that is beyond reason and it made me lose all my respect for the guy. Fortunately, that detail is easy to edit in my head down to something more reasonable. Even so, it was jarring. (hide spoiler)] The second drawback is the epilogue and is harder to explain (and suffers an unfortunate feedback loop from the current election). (view spoiler)[It's one thing to announce that Nealy is going to run for office. It's another to show her winning the presidency ten years down the line and in such a handy way. That tripped over everything I know about politics and politicians and elections. I'm sorry, but people just don't vote for the better person and no collection of policy positions appeals that strongly to a huge majority of the American people. You can tell that's true because if there was such a collection of policies, a political party would be all over them already (even if it had to spontaneously generate to do so). I guess what I'm saying is that the optimistic happy ending tripped over my more cynical sense of the realistic and that broke the ending for me. Win after a long, tough fight? Sure. Win handily and absolutely everybody loves her? Not so much. (hide spoiler)] Anyway, disappointments aside, this was a lot of fun and kept me riveted to the end. A note about Politics: One of the things that SEP does to engage readers is that she keeps Nealy's political party (and that of her father) ambiguous. It's never named and you couldn't identify it by policies mentioned either for or against. And when Nealy establishes that she calls someone the Secret Service has access to every day to keep the urgency of the search for her down, SEP mentions both Hilary Clinton and Barbara Bush as folks she's called in that endeavor. Further, when Mat questions her about her personal politics, SEP pulls back and describes it as a mix of right, left and center without being specific of what that means. Which is frankly brilliant because even people lodged deep in the U.S. party system have the exact same positions personally (a mix of right, left, and center, I mean). It's just the particulars where we all diverge. I can imagine an author being tempted to designate winners in this book and I'm so glad SEP resisted that temptation. Fantastically well-done. A note about Steamy: Nealy and Mat don't have a ton of time to get together. They manage two explicit sex scenes (and one near-miss) and it ends up on the low side of my middle tolerance. And I really liked how this was one of the background-establishing details for Nealy (being so sheltered and (view spoiler)[functionally a virgin due to her former husband's secret homosexuality (hide spoiler)] ).

  20. 5 out of 5

    Priya

    I absolutely enjoyed this book; she is definitely on my list of favorite authors. Interesting story line, good interaction between the characters, some good laugh out moments. A First lady (who has run away to lead a normal life for some time), a journalist (who is trying to get his career back on track) and two cute children go on a road trip together.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Aly

    3 strangers and 1 baby on a road-trip to Iowa. What's special with that? There's a surly journalist, the two orphan girls (a 14 yrs old and the baby) that he temporary have custody of and the former First Lady who ran away from the White House,mascarading as an old lady first and then as a.... I'm not telling you😜. Cornelia Case let herself be a pawn in her father's aspiration. When her husband, the President of the United States, died, she decide that she wants her life back. With no other plan 3 strangers and 1 baby on a road-trip to Iowa. What's special with that? There's a surly journalist, the two orphan girls (a 14 yrs old and the baby) that he temporary have custody of and the former First Lady who ran away from the White House,mascarading as an old lady first and then as a.... I'm not telling you😜. Cornelia Case let herself be a pawn in her father's aspiration. When her husband, the President of the United States, died, she decide that she wants her life back. With no other plan than to taste freedom again, Nealy escape and hope for at least a few days before Secret Services find her and bring her back. Chance put her on the same path as a sexy but bossy man and the two waifs he's driving to their grandmother. After taking care of seven sisters, the last thing Mat Jorik wants is to be stuck again with females. Certainly not a sullen teenager, a baby (who's not his's no matter what their birth certificate says), and not even the pretty lady who accompany them to help him babysit the girls. This motley crew may not always get along well but whether they realize or not, they all bond together during the trip and saying goodbye will be tougher than they expected. I probably said it a thousand times before but road trip is one of my favorite trope. And even if I haven't reread all Susan Elizabeth Phillips's yet, I can tell First Lady is still one of my favorites. Makeshift family is also a dear subject to me (not from personal experience) but because I think it's one of the most beautiful and touching thing in the world. I felt in love with each characters, even the imperfect hero and baby Button was hilarious. The idea with the Service Secret's agents felt incomplete tough. But what a fun ride this book was!

  22. 5 out of 5

    fleurette

    Most of the books by Susan Elizabeth Phillips are hit or miss for me. I either like them a lot either strongly dislike them. This is one of the few that I liked but it didn't grabbed me as much as some others. I definitely liked the main characters Mat and Nealy. The idea of the First Lady as a heroine is really refreshing and unique. The girls even though a bit stereotypical are also okay. I also liked that Nealy isn't one of those totally naive and silly heroines. However, I have to admit that I Most of the books by Susan Elizabeth Phillips are hit or miss for me. I either like them a lot either strongly dislike them. This is one of the few that I liked but it didn't grabbed me as much as some others. I definitely liked the main characters Mat and Nealy. The idea of the First Lady as a heroine is really refreshing and unique. The girls even though a bit stereotypical are also okay. I also liked that Nealy isn't one of those totally naive and silly heroines. However, I have to admit that I didn't enjoyed the ending. In my opinion Nealy's reaction on Mat's secret is exaggerated, especially that she isn't honest with him for most part of their relationship, too. There is also a problem of the feelings between them. I couldn't found them unfortunately. I can eventually imagine that Nealy is a bit fascinated by Mat since he is so different from the man she knows but I couldn't found any proper explanation for his feelings. Especially, feelings as strong as he describes them in his final speech which is by the way really romantic and completely over the top in their situation. I generally liked this story and like I said First Lady as a heroine is a great idea. I'm giving this book 3.5 star for those annoying parts and ridiculous ending.

  23. 5 out of 5

    ShoSho

    Why did I wait so long to read this?!

  24. 4 out of 5

    Marcie

    Cute premise. Widowed First Lady is coerced into sticking around in that capacity for the next unmarried president. After a while she just flips out, disguises herself, merges into a tour, and gains herself a few days of freedom to roam the country at will as a normal person. She goes to a garage sale and buys the ugliest ceramic frog she can find, loves truck stop greasy diners, and of course, she can drive a Winnebago (she's had experience driving tanks, US and foreign made). She encounters two Cute premise. Widowed First Lady is coerced into sticking around in that capacity for the next unmarried president. After a while she just flips out, disguises herself, merges into a tour, and gains herself a few days of freedom to roam the country at will as a normal person. She goes to a garage sale and buys the ugliest ceramic frog she can find, loves truck stop greasy diners, and of course, she can drive a Winnebago (she's had experience driving tanks, US and foreign made). She encounters two recently orphaned girls badly in need of a mother (the oldest 14 with purple hair and multiple piercings) and a recently dishonored journalist who is driving them to their grandmother cross country. Imagine Kate Hepburn with that magnificent ceramic frog tucked under her arm, demanding Spencer Tracy pull the Winnebago over for an impromptu picnic with the girls by the side of the road. Unfortunately, it turns REALLY sappy at the end, I mean sacchirin overdose, Full Cavity Alert. Time to go back to the bloody murder mysteries for awhile.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Eve

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. First Lady (Wynette, Texas #4) by Susan Elizabeth Phillips Contemporary Romance When Mat Jorik's ex-wife dies and leaves him her two daughters, he agrees to drive them from Pennsylvania to their grandmother's Iowa home. So they start their long trip in a beat up Winnebago named Mabel. They meet at a truck stop with a woman whose car and money were stolen. Mat reluctantly offers her a ride in return for her care of the baby (called Butt!) and rebellious teenager Lucy. Little do they know who their n First Lady (Wynette, Texas #4) by Susan Elizabeth Phillips Contemporary Romance When Mat Jorik's ex-wife dies and leaves him her two daughters, he agrees to drive them from Pennsylvania to their grandmother's Iowa home. So they start their long trip in a beat up Winnebago named Mabel. They meet at a truck stop with a woman whose car and money were stolen. Mat reluctantly offers her a ride in return for her care of the baby (called Butt!) and rebellious teenager Lucy. Little do they know who their new companion is -- Nealy is disguised as a pregnant woman down on her luck but in fact she's Cornelia Litchfield Case, First Lady of a recently deceased President...and she's woman on the run... SEP knows how to write great books that offer escape from everyday problems. First Lady is no exception. It was enjoyable, very well and amusingly written. Highly recommend.

  26. 5 out of 5

    ♥ℳelody

    4.5 stars No clue why this is part of the Wynette Texas series??

  27. 4 out of 5

    NiteReader

    I'm rounding up to two stars... This one was really not good, not good at all.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Gisela

    Hilarious and tender, enjoyable to the last sentence. I loved it and sure will be reading more of this author's work. 5 well deserved stars!

  29. 5 out of 5

    Reni

    Forgot how much I love SEP's books. Really enjoyed this one. Some laugh out loud moments.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Marcella

    Fun, campy rom-com. Very Roman Holiday but with Americana. It’s set in the 90’s or early 2000’s and so was fun nostalgia of walkmans and CDS and chokers and no cell phones.

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