Tag: smart romance

Nuts by Alice Clayton

img_0135Book: Nuts

Series: Hudson Valley #1

Author: Alice Clayton

Main characters: Roxie Callahan, chef to the rich and famous, Leo Maxwell, local farmer, from one of the oldest families in Bailey Falls.

Plot: When Rosie Callahan is unceremoniously fired from her job as chef to the rich and powerful, she has no choice but to return to her childhood home of Bailey Falls. Her mother runs a diner there and needing her to cover while she’s away, Roxie reluctantly accepts.

Roxie soon finds that not everything about the home she left behind is bad. One of her suppliers, a young farmer named Leo, has her optimistic about her summer stuck in podunk. Perhaps a little dalliance with no strings attached will make the time pass faster…Leo has an easy smile, a relaxed way of being, and a bod that was made for sin. Despite the flannel, I t’s clear he comes from a privileged and monied background. Roxie suspects they both come from very different worlds, but it’s not forever so who cares?

Why you should read it: This is a seriously good read! I’ve only just got around to reading this series – I think I was saving it up, as I love Alice Clayton and her stories in general. Leo and Roxie had a chemistry that was incandescent! It burned and it was quite a slow burn too. I loved that it didn’t rush to sexy times straightaway. It was funny, gave a real sense of the geographical location and made me love the characters.

What you may not like: Nada! It was a strong opener to the Hudson Valley series and having read Cream of the Crop too, it’s every bit as good!

Rating: 5/5 for a hugely entertaining and super sexy read. I love this series!

Beauty and the Mustache by Penny Reid


Book: Beauty and the Mustache – a philosophical romance

Series: Knitting in the City #4 and Winston brothers 0.5

Author: Penny Reid

Main characters: Ashley Winston and Drew Runous


Basic story: Ashley Winston has a great life in Chicago – she was desperate to get away from her native Tennessee, and her band of idiotic brothers eight years ago. Settled in a good job with a close-knit circle of friends (excuse the pun – it wasn’t intentional), her life takes an uncertain turn when she gets the call that her mother is ill.

Returning to Tennessee to look after her mother forces her to reconnect with her six brothers – at one time her biggest tormentors. She also has to deal with family friend Dr. Drew Ruinous, an intense, poet and bearded park ranger, whom she can’t figure out. He seems to hate her on sight – at least, at the times when he isn’t looking at her like she’s a glass of water and he’s a VERY thirsty man. What’s up with that?

As Ashley learns about herself and absorbs her mother’s enigmatic advice, she comes to realise that Chicago may be where her life is, but life in Tennessee could also hold some exciting possibilities – if only Drew would finally lay his cards on the table and use those words he’s so good at capturing on paper…

Why you should read it: Because. Penny Reid. She’s fabulous and funny and whose poetry ‘will melt your butter.’ (A phrase that I will now be using constantly!) Her characters are well-rounded, complex and feature some familiar faces that you may have read about in earlier books. Good news is if you love Ashley’s brothers, they have their own spin-off series – they all have beards and are super silly and sweet! The chemistry between Ash and Drew was HAWT – he is a deep and old soul and Ashley is the right balance for him. I loved their dynamic and swooned many a time.

What you might not like: Erm…hot mountain men with lots of facial hair? Didn’t think it was my thing, but I confess I’m a convert! Especially if the dude’s a poet. I honestly can’t criticise this book – it was superb – so fun and a great study in family dynamics, with some drama thrown in.

Rating: 5/5 for me – thoroughly entertaining, sexy and smart – which is something you can rely on with Penny Reid books.