This fiction debut from Julia Child’s longtime executive chef vividly captures the convivial but hectic world of food...

LAST BITE

A NOVEL OF CULINARY ROMANCE

Young New York chef finds romance and intrigue when she travels to Italy for her television job.

Executive chef Casey Costello handles all the cooking segments for popular daily TV show Morning in America. She and her team support Sally Woods, a much-loved yet feisty food legend, putting together breezy three-and-a-half-minute demonstrations that are wonders of organization. Casey’s personal life, by contrast, is a shambles, and the novel opens with her licking her wounds after being dumped by her dentist boyfriend. Enter Danny O’Shea, a talented restaurant chef/owner who takes a shine to Casey when he is booked as a guest on the show. Casey spurns the advances of the devilishly attractive Irishman for no better reason, perhaps, than to make their inevitable hook-up all the sweeter. Readers don’t have to wait long, as Casey travels to Italy with Sally to shoot a series of TV spots. Danny, who happens to be in Europe for business, shows up at Casey’s surprise 30th-birthday party, leading to a dizzyingly romantic rendezvous in Florence. The two grow close, but she wonders if Danny’s charm is pure blarney. Meanwhile, Sally has inexplicitly taken up with an odious new agent who has managed to alienate all her colleagues and talk her into several bad business decisions. When this shady character shows up in Italy, Casey wonders if there is more to the story and inadvertently uncovers a blackmail plot involving Sally’s late husband Peter, who was a nuclear scientist. It is then up to Casey (with a little help from Danny) to unravel the mystery, save her friend and boss and get them back to New York in time to film their “Baked Alaska” episode. The expertly handled cooking passages add flavor to the standard boy-meets-girl story.

This fiction debut from Julia Child’s longtime executive chef vividly captures the convivial but hectic world of food television.

Pub Date: June 9, 2006

ISBN: 1-56512-495-2

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Algonquin

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 2006

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With frank language and patient plotting, this gangly teen crush grows into a confident adult love affair.

LOVE AND OTHER WORDS

Eleven years ago, he broke her heart. But he doesn’t know why she never forgave him.

Toggling between past and present, two love stories unfold simultaneously. In the first, Macy Sorensen meets and falls in love with the boy next door, Elliot Petropoulos, in the closet of her dad’s vacation home, where they hide out to discuss their favorite books. In the second, Macy is working as a doctor and engaged to a single father, and she hasn’t spoken to Elliot since their breakup. But a chance encounter forces her to confront the truth: what happened to make Macy stop speaking to Elliot? Ultimately, they’re separated not by time or physical remoteness but by emotional distance—Elliot and Macy always kept their relationship casual because they went to different schools. And as a teen, Macy has more to worry about than which girl Elliot is taking to the prom. After losing her mother at a young age, Macy is navigating her teenage years without a female role model, relying on the time-stamped notes her mother left in her father’s care for guidance. In the present day, Macy’s father is dead as well. She throws herself into her work and rarely comes up for air, not even to plan her upcoming wedding. Since Macy is still living with her fiance while grappling with her feelings for Elliot, the flashbacks offer steamy moments, tender revelations, and sweetly awkward confessions while Macy makes peace with her past and decides her future.

With frank language and patient plotting, this gangly teen crush grows into a confident adult love affair.

Pub Date: April 10, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-5011-2801-1

Page Count: 416

Publisher: Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Jan. 23, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2018

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Heartfelt and funny, this enemies-to-lovers romance shows that the best things in life are all-inclusive and nontransferable...

THE UNHONEYMOONERS

An unlucky woman finally gets lucky in love on an all-expenses-paid trip to Hawaii.

From getting her hand stuck in a claw machine at age 6 to losing her job, Olive Torres has never felt that luck was on her side. But her fortune changes when she scores a free vacation after her identical twin sister and new brother-in-law get food poisoning at their wedding buffet and are too sick to go on their honeymoon. The only catch is that she’ll have to share the honeymoon suite with her least favorite person—Ethan Thomas, the brother of the groom. To make matters worse, Olive’s new boss and Ethan’s ex-girlfriend show up in Hawaii, forcing them both to pretend to be newlyweds so they don’t blow their cover, as their all-inclusive vacation package is nontransferable and in her sister’s name. Plus, Ethan really wants to save face in front of his ex. The story is told almost exclusively from Olive’s point of view, filtering all communication through her cynical lens until Ethan can win her over (and finally have his say in the epilogue). To get to the happily-ever-after, Ethan doesn’t have to prove to Olive that he can be a better man, only that he was never the jerk she thought he was—for instance, when she thought he was judging her for eating cheese curds, maybe he was actually thinking of asking her out. Blending witty banter with healthy adult communication, the fake newlyweds have real chemistry as they talk it out over snorkeling trips, couples massages, and a few too many tropical drinks to get to the truth—that they’re crazy about each other.

Heartfelt and funny, this enemies-to-lovers romance shows that the best things in life are all-inclusive and nontransferable as well as free.

Pub Date: May 14, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-5011-2803-5

Page Count: 416

Publisher: Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: March 3, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2019

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