Bon Appetit by Sandra Byrd is a sweet book as befits one in which Lexi, the heroine, is studying to be a pastry chef. And in Paris, no less. The descriptions of what her studies entail are fascinating for someone like me who has always adored Julia Child. So are the descriptions of how the French natives react to her. Having visited Paris briefly, I can attest to the truthfulness of those.
The story is written from a definite Christian perspective. This is not my usual style and I was leery at first, but it was done with a light touch. The lack of four-letter words actually comes as a relief.
The book is the second in Byrd’s French Twist series. I didn’t read the first installment, so some of the many characters got a bit jumbled in my mind. The reader is left hanging at the end of Bon Appetit without a resolution about which beau Lexi will choose, the French baker or the American lawyer. I guess I’ll have to read Book Three.
As an Avon Addict, I was given the chance to get an advance copy of Savor by Monica Murphy. The book is set in California wine country where I once spent a delightful vacation cruising from vineyard to vineyard in a turquoise convertible. How could I refuse?
This novel is the third in Murphy’s Billionaire Bachelor Club Series. I haven’t read the first two, but she gives enough background to prevent a reader from getting lost.
Matt DeLuca, the hero of this one, is a former baseball player. An injury has forced him into a new career as a vintner. He’s so busy launching the re-opening of the winery he bought, he hardly has time to look at his assistant.
There isn’t much to see. Bryn James, the assistant he inherited from the former owner of the winery, is camouflaging her assets by wrapping herself in drab, droopy beige clothes.
Newfound girlfriends intervene to bring about a makeover, and sparks begin to fly. The trouble is, Bryn’s got issues leftover from a former boss, and Matt’s got issues leftover from a sleazy dad.
The story is told in the alternating points of view of Matt and Brynn. It’s always interesting to hear what the characters are thinking.
The language is definitely contemporary. I was a little taken aback by that since I’m far more comfortable with the euphemisms of Regencies. It is, however, in keeping with the backgrounds of the characters.
The plot was not terribly believable, but this IS a romance after all. A good read with a glass of chardonnay.
It bears repeating that if I could be someone else, that person would be Eloisa James. Let me count the ways I am pea green over her life.
First, she writes the most delightful romance novels. I, on the other hand, start writing them but never finish.
Second, she is a college professor-tenured, mind you-of English literature, specifically Shakespeare.
Third, she is married to an Italian knight (I am not making this up) who is also a professor, and she and her family frequently visit his mother in Tuscany. Tuscany. Sigh.
Fourth, she spent a year living in Paris and wrote a book about that experience. She’s currently spending a year in London, visiting the Globe Theater and other literary landmarks, and will no doubt write another successful book.
I really hope I don’t develop a head like a dog for these feelings…
From the Wikipedia entry on the Seven Deadly Sins:
Arch in the nave with a gothic fresco from 1511 of a man with a dog-head, which symbolizes envy (Dalbyneder Church (da), Denmark)