Book Reviews

Ginger and Gentlemen (Recipe for Romance 3) by Ari McKay at Torquere Press

Genre Gay / Contemporary / Romance
Reviewed by Serena Yates on 31-July-2013

Book Blurb

Ian Pierce has always resented growing up in the shadow of his older brother, executive chef Stephen Pierce. But when Stephen asks Ian appear on his television special, “Mouth of the South”, Ian has no choice but to accept in order to save his diner from bankruptcy. However, not even the encouragement of his best friend and business manager, Matt Davis, can make Ian happy about it.

Matt has been in love with Ian for years, and he would do anything to help Ian save his diner. Ian won’t accept Matt’s money, so Matt secretly puts up the cash for a bonus in Ian’s contract with the Gourmet Network. With Ian and Stephen crossing verbal swords and a series of mishaps plaguing the filming, the success of the entire project is thrown into doubt. When Ian learns about the bonus and accuses Stephen of manipulating him, Matt is faced with a choice: does he let Ian’s rift with his only sibling stand, or does he come clean and risk destroying all hope that their friendship might ever become something more?


Book Review

Much like the second book in the series, this volume has the filming for a "gourmet kitchen" episode at its center. There are a few additional factors that add great tension and quite some spice to the proceedings: Ian, the younger brother whose diner is featured, hates his elder brother Stephen, and has done for years. Stephen wants to make amends, or that's what it looks like, but the feud between the two brothers isn’t an easy one to end. And on the romance front we have Ian's best friend Matt, who is as in love with Ian as he is with Matt, but they're both too afraid to admit it for fear of losing their friendship.

Pour all of these elements into a pot, stir well under gentle heat, and voilá, you end up with a great story that made me smile at the characters' antics and grumble at the mutual stupidity in turn.

Ian loves being a chef. He's been to culinary school and feel just as qualified and entitled to run a kitchen as his brother Stephen, but he chooses to go for simpler fare. He focuses on Southern cuisine, and runs a "gourmet diner", is what I would call it. His ex cleaned out his bank account a while ago and he is in dire financial straights. Hence being on TV and the exposure and advertising that will get him is ideal. There's only one problem: his much-hated elder brother Stephen is in charge, since it is his show, and Ian really doesn't want to have to feel grateful to him.

Matt is Ian's best friend, in fact, his parents took Ian in when his father kicked him out for being gay. He loves Ian a lot, but is afraid to say anything for the same reasons Ian pretends they're "only friends". Matt cannot imagine a life without Ian. So, he ends up helping where he can, financially and otherwise, and hopes for the best.

It takes some doing to get these guys together, but when they do? Sparks fly and the potential for deep romantic involvement finally becomes obvious to both of them. If you like stories with lots of family conflict, if you enjoy reading about chefs and their trials and tribulations both in the kitchen and when running their business, and if you're looking for a short, hot read with lots of lovely foodie details, then you will probably like this novella.





DISCLAIMER: Books reviewed on this site were usually provided at no cost by the publisher or author. This book has been provided by Torquere Press for the purpose of a review.

Additional Information

Format ebook
Length Novella, 113 pages/34500 words
Heat Level
Publication Date 24-July-2013
Price $4.99 ebook
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