Book Review & Giveway: Sugar and Spice and All Those Lies

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Title: Sugar and Spice and All Those Lies

Author: Evy Journey

Pages:  181 pages

Plot: Cooking a wonderful meal is an art. An act of love. An act of grace. A gift that affirms and gives life—not only does it nurture those who partake of the meal; it also feeds the soul of the creator. These are lessons Gina learns from her mother, daughter of an unfortunate French chef.

Gina is a young woman born to poor parents, a nobody keen to taste life outside the world she was born into. A world that exposes her to fascinating people gripped by dark motives. Her passion for cooking is all she has to help her navigate it.

She gets lucky when she’s chosen to cook at a Michelin-starred restaurant in the San Francisco Bay Area where customers belong to a privileged class with money to spare for a dinner of inventive dishes costing hundreds of dollars. In this heady, scintillating atmosphere, she meets new friends and new challenges—pastry chef Marcia, filthy rich client Leon, and Brent, a brooding homicide detective. This new world, it turns out, is also one of unexpected danger.

Can the lessons Gina learned from her mother about cooking and life help her survive and thrive in this other world of privilege, pleasure, and menace?

Thoughts: First of all, a very Happy Valentine’s Day to all of you.  I hope you are celebrating love and life with your loved ones not just today but every day. Today I have chosen to review a contemporary romance novel which is little sweet and a little spicy.

We follow Gina an aspiring chef who is a cook at one of the best restaurants in the Bay Area. She has had a very modest upbringing. But what she has received the art of cooking from her mother. She is passionate about her work and is focused on making things work for her.

The restaurant Gina works at is often visited by the elite of the town. One fine day Leone arrives on a date, who happens to be Gina’s childhood friend, Christi at her restaurant. Gina’s dish and Gina herself catches Leone’s fancy. After dumping Gina’s friend, he peruses Gina endlessly in various ways to go out with him. A crazy argument between Gina and her friend leads to involvement of a police officer and the story picks up from there.

What I liked about the book was the pace and the concise narration. I felt the characterization was a bit loose and I didn’t connect to any of the characters much. Gina’s character had great potential of connecting with the readers and it did at the start of the book but as the book progressed her character became a bit vague. The story was quite predictable but the good prose made the book a good read.

Overall, the book was an easy breezy read with some crazy fights, torn love, revenge, jealousy, romance and lots of food.

Ratings: 3/5

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About the Author:
 

Evy Journey, writer, wannabe artist, and flâneuse (feminine of flâneur), wishes she lives in Paris where people have perfected the art of aimless roaming. Armed with a Ph.D., she used to research and help develop mental health programs.

She’s a writer because beautiful prose seduces her and existential angst continues to plague her despite such preoccupations having gone out of fashion. She takes occasional refuge by invoking the spirit of Jane Austen to spin tales of love, loss, and finding one’s way—stories into which she weaves mystery or intrigue.

Connect with the author: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Pinterest
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Book Review: The Corner Office

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Title: The Corner Office

Author: Katerina Baker

Page: 180 pages

Plot: Tara Johnson’s sacrifices are about to pay off: a senior executive at thirty-five at a Fortune 500 company, she’s one of the two finalists in line for a Managing Director position. Unfortunately, her rival of fifteen years, the charming, infuriating Richard Boyd, is just as qualified, and unlike her, he’s willing to cross pretty much every line to get what he wants.

Of all the things Tara stored in the attic to make it to the top, it’s her personal life she misses the most. That is, until she starts a steamy affair with sex god Aidan, her direct report. Interoffice relationships with a subordinate can mean the end of a career, and when Richard finds out, it’s the perfect opportunity to take his high-heeled nemesis out, especially since he’s still nursing a grudge against Tara for rejecting him years ago.

But Tara’s increasingly domineering lover has his own dark secrets, endangering more than just her career. As her liaison spirals out of control, salvation will come from the man she always thought she hated, and perhaps the only one to truly understand

Thoughts:  ‘Corner Office’ is a contemporary romance novel revolving mainly around Tara Johnson, a thirty five year old, ambitious senior executive, running for the position of a Managing Director at a Fortune 500 company. She has given it her all, ignored her personal life and relationships to reach where she is. But she is not the only one aspiring to be the Managing Director. Richard Boyd, a fellow senior executive, a rival of Tara’s since fifteen years is ready to give it all to become the MD. He is a charmer and he pretty much gets whoever, whatever he wants with much ease. The rivalry and the constant bickering between Tara and Richard is quite a lot of fun to read. Tara has always been a rule abider until the day Adian, joins her team and she gets into a steamy affair with him. This is against the office policy and the story picks up from here on.

Tara’s character is much likable from the beginning itself. I like her go getter spirit, the way she is focused yet when it comes to her mother she leaves everything behind and attends to her needs, even the tiniest ones and the way she inspires her fellow women employees at Women’s Network. Richard’s character is the one that you will strongly dislike at the beginning but fall in love with towards the end. Adian’s behavior was a bit ambiguous and hence the course of his actions was not justified well. His character seemed to change drastically in a short time. I really didn’t understand why such a strong person like Tara did not put him in his place sooner. Towards the end I really wanted to know who gets the corner office and how. Hopefully there will be sequel.

The story is narrated from Tara’s point of view. The writing is smooth and apart from the romance, the premise also offers a lot of corporate politics, stalking, blackmailing, etc. I quite liked the book. It was a quick read. I wish the author good luck for her book release and I definitely look forward to reading more books from her.

Ratings: 3.5/5

PS: The book releases on 23rd June, 2017.  I would like to thank the author and the publication for sending me the ARC via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

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Book Review: Love Muffin and Chai Latte

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Title:  Love Muffin and Chai Latte

Author:  Anya Wylde

Pages: 300 pages

Plot: Clear your calendar, turn on your voicemail and get cozy on the sofa as Anya Wylde has decided to dip her toes into the world of contemporary romance …

Love Muffin and Chai Latte follows the journey of Tabitha Lee Timmons as she deals with financial stress, loony relatives, some crooks, an unhappy bride to be, a grumpy old man and two heartbreakingly handsome men.

Love Muffin and Chai Latte is a contemporary romance novel where West meets the East. Tabby our protagonist has migrated to England from America after one tragic happening in life. She has lost her job, her house and is on the street when her yearlong boyfriend, Chris proposes to her. She is confused at first but accepts the proposal.  She finds out later that day that his actual name is Chandramohan and she has to learn everything about the Indian culture before meeting Chris’s rich, orthodox, traditional family. Maya, Chris’s sister steps in to help them and the story picks up from there.  Tabby visits India and meets Chris’s extended family. She finds it difficult at first to cope up but pretty soon she adjusts to the culture and becomes a part of the family. She particularly becomes close to Maya and Dev, a cousin of Chris. I won’t say more about the story since I don’t want to leak any spoilers.

I would refrain from calling it a romance novel. I would rather categorize it in humor or drama. The narration was pretty good. The interactions though could have been woven in a comprehensible manner.   There were a lot of interesting plots. Diversity in cultures is well highlighted. There were moments in the book that made me laugh out loud but few of the jokes were really cheesy. I thought the book was too filmy, in a way inspired from a Bollywood movie. Few plots were too hard to believe. Haven said that if you leave logic at bay, this book was a quick fun read.

Ratings: 3/5

PS: – Thanks to the author for sending a copy of the book for an honest review.

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