Book Reviews

Table for One by Ava Hayden at Dreamspinner Press

Genre Gay / Contemporary / Romance / Holiday
Reviewed by Serena Yates on 03-March-2018

Book Blurb

Nick DiGiaccomo waits tables at Fortissimo, an exclusive restaurant in Oilton, Alberta. He loathes drama, particularly the kind that makes its appearance on Valentine’s Day.

This Valentine’s Day is especially bitter. Eight months ago Nick’s heart was broken when his lover walked away without a word over a misunderstanding. Too proud to call, Nick’s heard nothing from him since. But on this, the most romantic day of the year, he keeps his feelings well-hidden and his professional smile firmly in place.

That is, until he sees his ex-lover, Mark Mishimoto, at a table for two in his section—and his Valentine’s Day goes from bad to downright horrible.

To make matters worse, a winter storm descends, hours earlier than forecast. When the restaurant closes, Nick finds himself stuck downtown in the middle of a blizzard with no way to get home and nowhere to go. Mark lives conveniently close by, and he’s offering up his couch. Nick could use a place to lay his head—but is it worth risking his heart?

Book Review

A table for one is a little sad at any time – but on Valentine’s Day? It is either outright devastating, totally embarrassing, or utterly mysterious. Due to the kind of man who “suffers” through this affliction in this story, it can’t be reasons one or two, so I concluded there must be some sort of mystery. And based on the main character’s reaction to this guy sitting alone in a high-end restaurant on what most people think is the most romantic night of the year, I was just waiting for the secret to be revealed.

Nick is an ex-Army combat engineer who waits tables as a way to finance college. His reaction to Mark taking a table in his section is a little extreme, if only internal, and even though he detests drama (well, of the romantic kind), he produces plenty of it in his head as he serves dinner. Memories of him and Mark meeting play out as time passes, and my curiosity grew with every course.

Between Nick’s attempts to guess what is going on and the blizzard brewing outside, this turns into quite the suspenseful story with more than one interesting revelation. I can’t say I was shocked by the ending, and I definitely enjoyed the route the author chose to get me there.

If you like mysterious appearances of ex-lovers at unexpected points in time, if you think that Valentine’s Day is a romantic occasion that can be taken in a few different ways, and if you’re looking for an entertaining read with a couple of surprises, then you will probably enjoy this short novella.





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

Additional Information

Format ebook
Length Short Story, 31 pages/9033 words
Heat Level
Publication Date 08-February-2016
Price $1.99 ebook
Buy Link