The Cakes of Monte Cristo

Rita Lucero will find a hidden necklace that was located in the bakery thanks to a new employee. She will be delighted with the find but as she learns more about the necklace Rita wonders if it is indeed cursed.

The Cakes of Monte Cristo is the sixth book to the series A Piece of Cake Mystery by Jacklyn Brady. I really liked this book, I got into the story right away. The mystery of the ruby necklace intrigued me. You wondered what family it truly belonged to and why was it hidden.

Rita is still stressed and jumping to conclusions but she seems a little less stressed. Though she is as curious as ever and stubborn as she does not believe everyone’s warning about the necklace. To be honest I don’t know if I would believe but I would be wary. I was happy that Miss Frankie wasn’t so overbearing with things she was having Rita complete. It seemed their relationship was back on track. Rita is still wondering about Ox and his resentment. It really seems that he doesn’t have any but Ox is not what you call a people person.

If this series is finished then I am happy for the most part, but there was no conclusion on to who Rita will be with and that bugs me. Jacklyn Brady is leaving it open. Although maybe this isn’t the end, if it isn’t I think I would be willing to continue reading it.

A Sheetcake Named Desire

Rita Lucero was at her ex’s, Phillippe Renier, bakery to finally get him to sign the divorce papers but she will quickly find that would be impossible. Phillippe was found dead with a chef’s knife in the chest at his bakery. Rita will have to find out who would want to kill her ex which will be difficult when everyone was hiding something.

A Sheetcake Named Desire is the first book to the series A Piece of Cake Mystery by Jacklyn Brady. I am trying another mystery and I have to say I really enjoyed this story. I just sat down and read. It was quick and fun and full of mystery that was kind of quirky.

Rita’s character was a pastry chef who had her own business but her life is interrupted with the abrupt departure of her husband. I liked that Rita was an amateur sleuth and she wasn’t always right. In fact she was letting her emotions get in the way at times when she was trying to solve her ex’s murder.

With mystery books I love trying to guess who had killed whomever. With certain mystery’s I can guess pretty easily. For this book I was guessing throughout the book and was not guessing right on the actual murderer. I will say that my suspicions on other parts of the book I was guessing right, at least to a point. I liked that the book had me actually thinking and coming up with questions as I was reading the book.

I will definitely be coming back to this series. I am curious to read how Rita’s life will be changed and what other murders will happen. Also if there will be anything happening with the bartender or the detective. The romance reader is always looking for some romance in the book. I don’t know if that will happen and even if it doesn’t I have a feeling I will like this series.

The Marriage Trap

the Marriage TrapMichael Conte needs a wife quickly to satisfy the family tradition so his sister is able to marry. He wasn’t sure that Maggie was the right choice but she was his only option. As they pretend he finds that the feelings he had been hiding were starting to come out.

Maggie Ryan was propositioned by Michael to be a fake bride for one week. She agrees as long as he stays away from her married best friend. As she spends time with Michael and his family she realizes she made a mistake because they were making her feel things for him.

The Marriage Trap is the second book to the series. Once again I really loved this book. There was more to these characters than I had believed, especially Maggie.

Maggie was a skilled photographer but she kept a wall up and did not get close to anyone. She made the rules and was always the one in control. You find out more about Maggie and her past is pretty tragic. She is not just the rich girl. I hated what happened to her in high school which shaped her to the woman she was today. Though she will have a chance to heal thanks to Michael, of course that comes a little later in the book. Michael was the man of the family since his father passed away and took it seriously, possibly a little too much. Although Michael is a good man with a good heart and was just trying his best.

The chemistry between Maggie and Michael is electric but they keep it at a distance because both of them are afraid to take that step. Though within the trip that will change but fears will still be there especially with Maggie who is terrified to take the next step. It also didn’t help that Maggie was sure Michael wanted her best friend Alexa but that will get sorted out eventually. The ending was sweet and you will want to cheer for Maggie and Michael as they get that happy ending.

I am going to have to try more from this author.

The Marriage Merger

The Marriage MergerJulietta Conte was determined in her job and wanted to succeed and had no time for distractions like Sawyer Wells or any other man. With every relationship she tried it just ended with her frustrated and hurt but with Sawyer he will draw out something inside of her that will make her into a new woman.

Sawyer Wells had a hard life that should have broken a person but he was determined to survive. Sawyer will do well in business but shields himself off from attachments that would have him caring. He will fail when it comes to Juliette who was just supposed to be an affair but he will find more with this woman.

The Marriage Merger is the fourth book to Marriage to a Billionaire series by Jennifer Probst. I liked this book a lot. It was a quick read as the story flowed from each scene and I couldn’t wait to find out how they were going to make it work, and find out about their story.

This was a book about control and who has the power and it was steamy with Juliette and Sawyer. They were not enemies but at odds because of their power struggle. I liked Juliette and Sawyer for their strong character and for their past. Sawyer had a hard life full of violence as his foster father was not a good man. You felt for Sawyer as the story unfolds but amazed that he survived all of it. I will say I was happy that in the previous book nothing happened with Carina, Juliette’s sister, and that it didn’t put a rift between Juliette and Sawyer. Now Juliette might not have had such a traumatic upbringing but getting to the top has been a hard path. The reasons for Juliette’s control in her life comes clear and feel bad for her but then cheer for her when she finds that possible release for her control, it will make her understand herself.

I will have to come back and read the first two books from Jennifer Probst so I can finish off this series.

Sleeping with the Entity

Sleeping with the EntityDaniella Delaney wanted to make cupcakes and make her store successful but one man was making it very difficult, Nick St. George. He did not make her feel welcomed and wanted her gone. Daniella had no idea why but she was here to stay and determined to dislike him. That was difficult as she was finding him irresistible.

Nick St. George did not want any more humans in his town but it seemed that Daniella wasn’t going to budge. He was shocked that his usual techniques did not work which made her a mystery to him. Nick was determined to find out about this woman and the trouble that seemed to follow her.

Sleeping with the Entity is the first book to the series Entity by Cat Devon. I liked the book. It was kind of quirky with kind of being a little absurd but in a good way because you liked the characters.

This story is set in Chicago all around vampires and a cupcake baker. Daniella is a determined woman with a very sunny disposition especially when it comes to her cupcakes. I liked that when facing Nick she doesn’t fall over him even though she finds him very appealing. I loved the fact that Nick who was a pretty powerful vampire could not use his powers to compel Daniella to do what he wanted. They are kind of like adversaries in a way but obviously they get over that problem as they will be heating up the pages.

The supernatural aspect is a little strange. There are obviously vampires but Daniella is not just a normal human and Devon will explain more as the story goes on. That plays into a part with the bad guy as Daniella was to be a prize worth having.

Based on this first book I will be back to revisit Cat Devon’s series.

Secret Desires of a Gentleman

Secret Desires of a GentlemanMaria Martingale had been the daughter of the cook for the Hawthorne family since she was little but when she and Lawrence, the younger Hawthorne, thought they were in love but they were torn apart by the older brother Phillip. Twelve years have passed and Maria is long over the supposed love she had for Lawrence as her drive is all about her baking and her shop.

Phillip Hawthorne was a very important man being the Marquess but he will be shocked to find that Maria will be next door to him opening up her bakery shop. Fearing that the past will repeat itself he will make sure that Lawrence and Maria do not have a chance to form an attachment.

Secret Desires of a Gentleman is the third book from the series Girl-Bachelor by Laura Lee Guhrke. I had not intended to sample a book from three different series but as that is what I did and found some stories I loved and some that were good. This one I have to say was one that I loved. The story flowed well and you were immediately brought into the lives of Maria and the Hawthorne brothers. Now when starting out the book I had not realize I was going to be reading about Maria but I remember her character in the book Scandal of the Year which I had read the other day. I already know that she has a happy ending so now I get to see how her story got started.

Maria’s character had drive. She wanted something and she went after it. I liked the little parts that were placed into the book giving us glimpses to her life with the brothers when they were younger. What I found interesting that it had been Phillip who had Maria was interested in that is until he showed no emotion to her as she grew up. I actually really liked Phillip’s character. Sure he was a little of a snob for the most part he did things to help his brother. The only person he wasn’t helping was himself. I liked that as you went along in the book you found out the depth of Phillip’s feelings for Maria and why he did what he did. He liked her but could not have her so the next best thing is to be indifferent. To me their relationship/proposal definitely had a Darcy and Elizabeth feel to it and like their classic love story a happy ending will be just around the corner. All they had to do were get out of each others way and find what works for them which basically meant don’t follow society’s rules.

I will be back with Laura Lee Guhrke after I find more books from her other series or from the ones I have started.

Sugar Rush

Sugar RushLeilani “Lani” Trusdale fled New York and settled back home to be with her father and to start up her own bakery store. Lani will feel that everything is falling into place until the man she had secretly loved comes flying back into her life.

Baxter Dunne needed Lani in his life. He thought he was doing the show which would help her store though it appeared everything he did was screwing up. Baxter would not give up on Lani but will soon find that she is not the same woman he knew in New York.

After reading the series Keyes Sisters from Susan Mallery which was about a bakery shop I picked up four books to Donna Kauffman’s series Cupcake Club. When picking up the books I hadn’t realized it but both series all are about desserts. This got me thinking of Christmas cookies that I helped make with my mom this past year and of course now making me want some of them.

So back to the book Sugar Rush from Donna Kauffman which is the first book to the series Cupcake Club. I thought it was a cute book with a simple story. Once you get into the story the characters are very well developed and I liked that Kauffman lets you into Baxter and Lani’s lives especially Baxter and how he got his start. I will admit I thought I would dislike Baxter due to Lani’s opinion about him but from the start he was a good guy at least from his comments he thought in his head. He meant to do things right but they always got screwed up. Lani needed to take a chance which she does with Baxter eventually.

There is an uplifting ending that gave Baxter and Lani a future on this island of Georgia and mentioned the next woman who would be in the second book Sweet Stuff. I am interested in how Kauffman will keep going with these desserts and if they are to be in the bakery or a new location. I will find out next as I pick up the second book.