I received this book for free from Publicist in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.The Bride Wore Chocolate by Shirley Jump
Series: Recipes with Romance #1
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Life couldn’t be more perfect for Candace Woodrow. Her gourmet gift basket company is thriving, and she’s set to marry steady, dependable Barry. There’s just one wrench in the fairytale. Two weeks before her wedding she wakes up in the wrong man’s bed. Candace thinks she’ll be able to run out the door and forget all about Michael Vogler, but the Boston millionaire has other plans for the jittery bride.
As the wedding approaches, Candace’s life is further complicated by a thrill-seeking grandma and a meddlesome mother whose marriage track record rivals Elizabeth Taylor’s. She attempts to drown her sorrows in chocolate, but with a sexy bachelor appearing on her doorstep at every turn – she finds herself wondering if there’s enough of the sweet stuff in the world to stop her heart from racing every time he comes near.
A sweet and sassy romantic comedy.
I’m a sucker for a good romance, and Shirley Jump’s The Bride Wore Chocolate certainly didn’t disappoint! Not to mention that I adore books that include recipes. I think it’s such a selling point for a story to include the food or drinks (or song lists, too) that the characters enjoy, mention, or talk about. It’s like a little extra bonus to the story and that special touch never fails to win points with me. Another selling point for this story with me is that it is set in Boston. I have fond memories of visiting Boston and would love to return and visit again. The Bride Wore Chocolate took me on a little return vacation each time I opened to where I had left off.
Perhaps I watch far too many Lifetime movies, but I found the plot to be rather predictable. Poor Barry never really had a chance with readers. We first meet him through the eyes and opinions of Candace’s friends and family members and, but the time he enters the page – horrible mother in tow – our hearts and minds are already set against him and in favor of the hunky, mysterious Michael. Tough break, Barry.
For me, there was never really a question if Candace would choose Barry or Michael. Candace’s friends were tugging her back up the aisle she was getting ready to walk down and it seemed pretty darn crystal clear to me that she was doubtful from page one. That said, Shirley Jump has an engaging writing style that lures the reader back to her pages – and frequently. It’s a tough book to put down! Her character canvas is filled with funny and endearing faces; I especially like the relationship between Candace and her two best friends and business partners – strong relationships and friendships between women are always a hit with me! Candace’s mother is a hoot and her grandmother made me laugh in every one of her scenes. And, as an animal lover, I also appreciated the various dogs and cats that made an appearance, as well.
All in all, this was a fast, light, and funny read. If I were a beach-going kind of girl, I’d say this is perfect for a beach read. As it is, I found it to be a wonderful palate cleanser; a fun break from my usual reading fare of cozy mysteries and contemporary literary fiction. My sincere thanks for the opportunity to take part in the book tour and offer this review in exchange for a copy of the book!
There’s so much going on today at On a Book Bender! We are a Blog Tour stop for Shirley Jump’s The Bride Wore Chocolate tour and we are all so happy you’re here! There’s a contest, a guest post with Shirley Jump and, of course, a review of the book. You will also find additional information about other tour stops – enjoy!
Please enter via the Rafflecopter form. Giveaway is open to US/Canada.
At this tour stop: a Guest Post from Shirley Jump!
Answers to the Top Three Questions I Am Never Asked
All writers get asked the same questions at book signings and events—where do your ideas come from, and how do you write a book. I’ve answered those questions so many times, it seems like I could do it in my sleep ;-)
I love this Three Questions I am Never Asked. That inspires a little creativity on my part, since those are questions no one ever asks ;-) Here’s what I came up with:
1. What is the weirdest thing that has ever happened at a book signing?
I was at a book signing in Indiana several years ago, with the table I was sitting at pressed against a wall (meaning I only had one way in and out from where I was sitting). At the end of the signing, this guy comes over to me and slips in on my exit side and proceeds to show me his hand-drawn children’s book. He couldn’t understand why the publisher had rejected it and wants my opinion. I say okay, and he starts to read. He’s drawn pictures to accompany the text, too. It all starts out quite nicely—a happy little bunny family living in the woods. Momma Bunny, Daddy Bunny and a passel of baby bunnies. Happy, happy, bunny life and then—
An evil fox comes and eats the baby bunnies. Blood and fur all over the page, dead baby bunnies, devastated Momma Bunny. Nice graphic drawings of the deadly devastation wreaked by the fox.
I turned to the guy. “Uh, what age group did you say this was for again?”
“Preschoolers,” he said, totally nonplussed. “I figure it’s never too early to learn about death.”
Yeah, I think that might have been the reason he was rejected. ;-)
2. Do you read bad books?
A lot of people ask me about my favorite writers (and I have a very long list of must-buy authors: Jill Shalvis, Kristin Hannah, Susan Wiggs, Jodi Picoult, Joshilyn Jackson, Harlan Coben, Lee Child, Joe Hill, Stephen King, Dennis Lehane, to name a few) but very few ask me about books I haven’t liked.
Like any reader, I don’t enjoy all the books I read. When I was first learning to write, I would muddle through bad books, trying to figure out why I didn’t like the book—what didn’t grab me, or why the characters didn’t ring true. I looked at it as a learning experience.
But now that I am older and my reading time is limited, I simply don’t waste time on bad books. If a book doesn’t grab me in a few pages, I’ll put it down. I don’t review books I don’t enjoy (mostly because if I don’t enjoy the book, I don’t finish it) and because I truly think one person’s opinion is merely that—one opinion.
As an author, I feel very blessed that any reader has given me the precious gift of her time—we are all limited on the number of hours we have in our lives and if a reader gifts me with two or six or ten hours of her life to read my book, I feel a HUGE responsibility to make that reading experience as awesome as possible. I don’t want a single page of my book to be a waste of that reader’s precious time. So the philosophy I use for my own reading is the same one I use when I’m writing.
3. What is the worst part about being a writer?
There are lots of amazing, wonderful perks to this job—doing what I love and getting paid for it is the number one benefit. But there are also some drawbacks. Working at home, for one, sounds awesome, until you realize you have gone several days without having a conversation with a real human being ;-) I joined a run club, just so I could get out a couple nights a week and talk about something other than writing. My husband and I often have “no work talk” date nights. I try to take Sundays completely off—zero work or work talk—so that I can remember what it’s like to do something other than write.
The other drawback is the amount of time spent marketing. More and more, being active on multiple social media platforms is an expected part of a writer’s job. I’ve decided to just pick my few (Facebook, Twitter and Goodreads) and let the rest go. There is, after all, only one me and this me wants to see her family once in a while ;-) To that end, I also try not to be too “marketing” focused on social media. I use it mainly to stay connected to friends, family and readers who become friends through our connections. I have met so many wonderful people through social media, and find they inspire me every day. That’s one of those hidden perks that I totally enjoy about my job!
New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Shirley Jump spends her days writing romance and women’s fiction to feed her
shoe addiction and avoid cleaning the toilets. She cleverly finds writing time by feeding her kids junk food, allowing them to dress in the clothes they find on the floor and encouraging the dogs to double as vacuum cleaners.
Look for her new and improved re-released Sweet and Savory Romance series, including the USA Today bestselling book, THE BRIDE WORE CHOCOLATE, on Amazon, and her Sweetheart Sisters series for Berkley, starting with THE SWEETHEART BARGAIN and continuing in April 2014 with THE SWEETHEART RULES. Visit her website at www.shirleyjump.com or read recipes and life adventures at www.eating-my-words.com.
Monday, June 9th – Cassandra M’s Place
Tuesday, June 10th – Curling Up with a Good Book
Wednesday, June 11th – Kindle and Me
Thursday, June 12th – Romancing Rakes for the Love of Romance
Friday June 13th – Supernatural Snark
Monday, June 16th – On a Book Bender
Tuesday, June 17th – Bewitched Bookworms
Wednesday, June 18th – Laina Turner
Thursday, June 19th – Devilishly Delicious Book Reviews
Friday June 20th – Daily Mayo
Monday, June 23rd – Smexy Books
Tuesday, June 24th – Stitch Read Cook
Wednesday, June 25th – Melissa’s Eclectic Bookshelf
Thursday, June 26th – The Book Swarm
Friday June 27th – What’s Beyond Forks?