Can't Stand The Heat (Recipe for Love #1) by Louisa Edwards
Publication date: 01 September 2009 by St. Martin's Press
Category: Adult Contemporary Romance
Keywords: Romance, contemporary, realistic, cooking
Format: Mass market paperback, eBook
For sharp-tongued Miranda Wake, the chance to spend a month in Adam Temple’s kitchen to write an exposé is a journalistic dream come true. Surely Miranda can find a way to cut the hotshot chef down to size once she learns what really goes on at his trendy Manhattan restaurant. The trouble is, she never expected Adam to find out her most embarrassing secret: this critic has no idea how to cook.
As for Adam, well, he’s not about to have his reputation burned by a critic who doesn’t even know the difference between poaching and paring. He’ll just have to give the tempting redhead a few private lessons of his own—teaching Miranda what it means to cook with passion.
I feel kind of bad about giving this one such a low rating, but I really couldn’t stand the female lead Miranda. She was annoying for at least 90% of the book. I couldn’t find many redeeming qualities in her and could not figure out why Adam or anyone else would put up with her. Selfish, narrow minded and plain annoying, she found fault with everything. I would have given it a lower rating if not for some of the other characters in the book.
It's a shame that Miranda was so unlikable because everything else in this book is great. Where to start? Well we're first introduced to Miranda at a the restaurant opening party for Market, where she is drunk and heckling Adam during his speech, criticizing his food before she's even tasted it. Later, she signs up for a tell all expose that will surely embarrass Adam and his friends all for her own gain. At one point in the story, Adam’s making her homemade waffles with bacon in it (bacon, people!) after a night of toe curling sex and she walks out on him because of something she has no right to blame him for. Seriously, Miranda needs to take a step back and take a chill pill. In an effort to control everyone and everything in her life, she ends up pushing people away.
One thing that kept this book from being a total bore was the cute and saucy romance that starts up between Miranda’s little brother Jeff and Adam’s sous chef, Frankie. Frankie’s got a delicious English accent and he’s unbearably sweet and attentive to Jess, who’s never had a boyfriend before. I actually wish that their story had been the main one in the book. And Adam is pretty much the perfect man. He’s smart, sexy, funny and a fabulous cook. Unfortunately he gets the short end of the stick in the romance department when he gets stuck with Miranda.
While I enjoyed the restaurant setting and all the other characters, my dislike of Miranda was so great that I couldn't really enjoy this book. The writing was solid though and I'd be willing to read another book in the series.
Visit the author online at www.louisaedwards.com and follow her on Twitter @louisaedwards