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Lyles, Whitney

Lyles, Whitney

PERSONAL:

Born in San Diego, CA; married; children: a daughter. Education: Attended Marymount College; graduate of the University of San Diego.

ADDRESSES:

Home—San Diego, CA.

CAREER:

Writer. Previously worked part-time jobs, including positions at a church and as a photo-lab clerk and babysitter.

WRITINGS:

NOVELS

Always the Bridesmaid, Berkley Books (New York, NY), 2004.

Roommates, Berkley Books (New York, NY), 2005.

Here Comes the Bride (sequel to Always the Bridesmaid,), Berkley Books (New York, NY), 2006.

Contributor to anthologies, including Catch of the Day, Berkley Sensation (New York, NY), 2006.

SIDELIGHTS:

In her first lighthearted romance novel, Always the Bridesmaid, part of a series of the same name, Whitney Lyles tells the story of Cate Padgett, a young single woman living in San Diego and working as a kindergarten teacher and photographer. Cate has plenty of friends but soon tires of the slavish duties of being a bridesmaid to so many of them. Cate is ready to tie the knot herself but is having difficulty choosing between Paul and her close friend and caterer Ethan. A Publishers Weekly contributor commented that the author's "eye for delightful details … makes this the ultimate bridesmaid gift." Meredith Parets, writing in Booklist, noted the novel's "outlandish wedding mishaps and twenty-something angst." Amie Taylor, writing on Bookreporter.com, commented that Always the Bridesmaid "addresses the angst, trials and tribulations of today's young, single woman who's not quite sure if she should rejoice in her freedom or bemoan her spinsterhood." The reviewer added: "It's also a novel that will make you want to keep reading." Harriet Klausner wrote on the Best Reviews Web site: "Fans of contemporary tales will find the amusing Always the Bridesmaid quite entertaining especially the scenes leading up to and occurring at a wedding." In a review on the Curled Up with a Good Book Web site, Shannon I. Bigham wrote: "Always the Bridesmaid is an entertaining, fun read that chick-lit fans will enjoy."

In the sequel to Always the Bridesmaid titled Here Comes the Bride, the reader finds Cate having chosen Ethan for her husband and preparing for their increas- ingly convoluted wedding. Complications arise when Ethan's ex-girlfriend shows up repeatedly, even while Cate and Ethan are on vacation. Cate's mother is also upset and threatening not to show up, and Ethan's cousin is an uncooperative bridesmaid. Aleksandra Kostovski, writing in Booklist, referred to Here Comes the Bride as a "sweet and funny story." Rebecca Vnuk wrote in the Library Journal that the author "has a knack for over-the-top characters and … absurd situations."

Lyles leaves Cate behind for Roommates, which explores the curse of bad roommates. Elise movies back to San Diego to find herself sharing an apartment with an obsessive-compulsive woman. She then moves in with two slovenly sisters. Elise must also deal with her own inner struggles as an underachiever who has a graduate degree and wants to be a novelist. At the same time, she is looking for someone to love. Kostovski, in another Booklist review, wrote that "single women will find a lot to relate to here."

Lyles also contributed to the anthology Catch of the Day. Her story, "The Wedding Day," finds a bridesmaid attracted to a man in the procession. "Each story is fun as love as in the air or at least down the aisle," wrote Harriet Klausner on the Best Reviews Web site.

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

PERIODICALS

America's Intelligence Wire, December 6, 2005, "San Diego State U.: Interview: Can't Live with 'Em, Can't Pay Rent without 'Em," interview with author.

Booklist, December 15, 2003, Meredith Parets, review of Always the Bridesmaid, p. 727; November 1, 2005, Aleksandra Kostovski, review of Roommates, p. 31; June 1, 2006, Aleksandra Kostovski, review of Here Comes the Bride, p. 48.

Entertainment Weekly, July 21, 2006, Jennifer Armstrong, review of Here Comes the Bride, p. 73.

Library Journal, June 1, 2006, Rebecca Vnuk, review of Here Comes the Bride, p. 110.

Publishers Weekly, December 15, 2003, review of Always the Bridesmaid, p. 39; February 16, 2004, review of Always the Bridesmaid, p. 59.

ONLINE

Best Reviews,http://thebestreviews.com/ (March 2, 2007), Harriet Klausner, reviews of Always the Bridesmaid and Catch of the Day.

Bookreporter.com,http://www.bookreporter.com/ (March 2, 2007), Amie Taylor, review of Always the Bridesmaid.

Curled Up with A Good Book,http://www.curledup.com/ (March 2, 2007), Shannon I. Bigham, review of Always the Bridesmaid, and Rashmi Srinivas, review of Always the Bridesmaid.

San Diego Magazine Web site,http://www.sandiegomag.com/ (March 2, 2007), Katie Ressmeyer, "Whitney Lyles."

Whitney Lyles Home Page,http://www.whitneylyles.com (March 2, 2007).

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