Monday, May 14, 2012

Hot Under Pressure

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Author: Louisa Edwards
ISBN: 978-0-312-53440-0
Publisher: St. Martin’s
Source: BookPleasures

The heat is on and the stakes are high for chef’s Skye Gladwell and Henry Beck, finalist in the Rising Star Chef competition. While both aim to take the title of Rising Star, the competition holds a more personal meaning for both. With a bet on the table and everything at risk, Skye and Henry are finally head to head, fighting for everything they have ever wanted, even if they don’t know it yet.

Skye grew up under the shadow of the Golden Gate, a child of free loving parents whose opinions of her every move were negative and unsatisfactory. From the moment Skye met Henry Beck, she was intrigued and drawn to him like a magnet to a fridge. Their marriage was hot and exciting until Sky falls pregnant and Henry leaves.

Henry has a past he wishes he could forget and a future he wishes he could secure. When Henry met Skye his life changed, though his closed off nature remained. When Skye becomes pregnant, Henry knows he has a family he has to take care of and he intends to do just that. Arguing that there is no other way, Henry leaves Skye alone in California and joins the Navy, sending monthly support checks her way.

Unfortunately, circumstances because both parties to stay separated and now, ten years later, Henry and Skye find themselves face to face, unable to avoid the mounting tension between them. With a deep emotional past to hash out and a cooking competition at stake, Henry and Skye battle with every last bit of energy left in them, each hoping the outcome tips the scales to their side.

Hot Under Pressure is an emotionally fast paced novel that will keep you turning the pages once you get about a third of the way in. The first part of the book builds the story and lays a foundation for the pages that follow. While intriguing, it’s not quite as seductive as the rest of the novel. I enjoyed the characters in this book. Both are flawed and hurt. Both have a past that hasn’t made their life easy and they both have a lot to still learn about each other. Under the guise of cooking, these chefs duke out everything between them both in and out of the kitchen. The pressure of the competition sure heats up these two stars, especially when they get together.

My only complaint about the book, is the ending. I was left hanging. This one could have used an epilogue to help wrap up a few of the storylines and give the reader a bit more closure. Aside from wanting a little more to satisfy me, the story was wonderful. True to her style, Louisa Edwards has produced another fabulous romance, mixing cooking with emotions and a little bit of sex.

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