Charmed by Chocolate by Steena Holmes was given to me for a fair and honest review.
Here’s the low down for this book it’s a clean romance and with a best friend to lover’s trope twist. This book is like set in the same town as the Bachelor Baking series which is in the little town of Marietta so what does that mean this book is mix of baking, the heroine stress bakes and chocolate because Sage’s chocolate shop is basically the setting with her famous hot cocoa taking center stage.
Leah or “lonely Leah” as she has been dubbed after an appearing on a bachelor type show, which sound more like UNREAL. If you haven’t seen UNREAL it’s a fictional bachelor type show based on how horrible it is behind the scenes and how the producers will do anything to win betting pools and get their girl to the end. Leah’s friend Betsy is producer on the show and guilt’s her into doing to the show But Leah isn’t looking for love she’s already in love with her best friend Wade who is in love with her but due to some misunderstands (like so many) he doesn’t she loves him, she doesn’t know he loves her. So naturally Leah comes home to Marietta to hide from the scandal she causes and naturally she’s going to avoid Wade, because it’s going to work out so well. Throw in a meddling grandma and of course the Hero himself isn’t about to let her go with her talking to him. And this book is straight forward and sweet.
However, there were a few things that I didn’t like Leah’s parents were killed by a drunk driver, so naturally one of the producers give her something alcoholic to drink after making her sit in the hot sun all day and starving her. Leah who never drinks becomes drunk and bad mouths the town and confesses her love for Wade. I felt like that entire thing was just tacky which was made even more so by Betsy wanting to come to Marietta a film a new mini show called “Lonely Leah finds Love” staring her and Wade. I think Betsy was one who spiked her drink to begin with that entire part of the story was just so sleazy for me that I couldn’t get into the story. Because it just seemed like a cruddy way to create conflict in the story. Which over shadowed the chocolate which I would have like to know more about. They talked about Sage making Haystacks (I had googled that) and truffles her famous hot cocoa and of course she was making chocolate coins in different flavors.
Of course, the book ends in a HEA with both characters realizing they are in love with the other they even agree to let Betsy film them for the “Lonely Leah finds love” thing.
That is not to say this book didn’t have its sweeter moments Wade wanted to take Leah out at night to watch owls, which I was like aww! But she was too busy stress baking. He took her skating which I thought was nice and the best thing that I really loved about this book is Wade made her scarf that she always wears. The man knitted her scarf! I just loved that!
If you can get entire bachelor thing. This quick read is okay and worth the price if you’re looking for a fluffy clean read. My hope is like with the baking bachelor series the next book will be better.