Hey everyone!  I’m back from my trip to New York and ready to get back to blogging.  I had a wonderful trip and loved being able to share my love of the city with my son since it was his first time there.  We had great weather most days, although it did rain a bit and was pretty foggy on Thursday.  We took him on a boat ride so he could see the Statue of Liberty, the Freedom Tower, the Brooklyn Bridge, and other iconic sites around the island, and we also did a carriage ride in Central Park and took him shopping in SoHo, among other activities.  The bright lights and chaos of Times Square was his favorite part of the trip, with New York style pizza a close second, haha.  I also introduced him to Broadway with Hamilton and Harry Potter and the Cursed Child.  I was not the biggest fan of the printed script version of Cursed Child or of she who shall not be named but I have to admit that seeing it on stage was pretty great. The special effects are amazing.  My son gave two thumbs up to New York overall, but we are all definitely glad to be back to the comfort and quiet of home now.

Today I’m sharing reviews of two books I read while traveling to and from New York.  Both are quick and wonderful reads, perfect for my trip.


Romance Reviews – SADIE ON A PLATE and IN A NEW YORK MINUTESadie on a Plate Goodreads

Author: Amanda Elliot

Publication Date: March 15, 2022

Publisher:  Berkley Books

FTC Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Netgalley.  All opinions are my own.

Sadie on a Plate is Amanda Elliot’s debut adult romance novel and it is an absolute delight.  It follows Sadie who is making a name for herself as a rising star in Seattle’s culinary world.  That is, until a very public breakup with her famous chef boyfriend gets her blacklisted from pretty much every restaurant in the area. When we meet Sadie, she is sure her career is over and is reeling from the loss until a stroke of good fortune lands in her lap – she has been chosen for a coveted spot on the next season of the popular reality TV show, Chef Supreme.  If Sadie can perform well in this competition, she can get her career back on track.

I love a good underdog story so I was rooting for Sadie to kick butt in this competition. Sadie is smart, sweet, talented, and resilient and I just really wanted her to prove everyone wrong since there have been some folks in her life who don’t think she has what it takes to succeed.  I was also rooting for her to hit it off with Luke, the sexy seatmate she meets on her cross-country flight, because she deserves someone better in her life than her ex. Even though Sadie and Luke have major chemistry, however, there’s one major obstacle to any possibility of a happily ever after for them.  When Sadie arrives at the Chef Supreme studios, she learns that Luke is actually one of the judges so he is off limits unless she wants to be disqualified.

While I really enjoyed the forbidden love element of their relationship because it added drama and suspense, not to mention longing looks from afar, the romance does not take center stage in this story.  Instead, it bookends the main focus of the story, which is actually the competition itself.  If you enjoy reality TV cooking shows like Top Chef, you are sure to enjoy the competition scenes in this book. Between the delectable descriptions of each dish Sadie and her fellow competitors created, to the tense competitive atmosphere, it truly felt like I was watching a cooking competition.  The entire cast of secondary characters was great, but I most enjoyed following Sadie as she came up with so many creative ways to show that Jewish cuisine is so much more than just latkes and pastrami.  By the end, she had me wishing she really did have a restaurant where I could partake of her delicious sounding creations.

I would have liked a little more focus on the romance, but honestly, watching Sadie come into her own and grow both on a personal level and as a chef was more than enough for me.  I would highly recommend Sadie on a Plate to anyone who enjoys a good underdog story with a side of romance and to fans of reality TV cooking shows.  4 STARS


Romance Reviews – SADIE ON A PLATE and IN A NEW YORK MINUTEIn a New York Minute Goodreads

Author: Kate Spencer

Publication Date: March 15, 2022

Publisher: Forever

FTC Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Netgalley.  All opinions are my own.

Kate Spencer’s new novel In a New York Minute is a hilarious yet tender romantic comedy that perfectly illustrates how you just never know what (or who) life is going to throw your way.  It follows Franny Doyle, a young woman, who in the opening scene of the book, has just been laid off from her job.  It wasn’t a great job, by far, but it at least paid the bills.  Feeling sad and defeated, Franny lugs her box of belongings onto the crowded subway.  Just when she thinks her day can’t possibly get any worse, she feels the back of her dress get caught in the subway doors and rip wide open.  A dashing stranger offers her his suit jacket so that she doesn’t moon all of Manhattan, and their embarrassingly awkward meet cute is captured on video.  They go their separate ways without even exchanging names, but the incident goes viral on social media and soon, half of New York is rooting for the “Subway QTs” to get together.  True to form, the local media outlets know a good story when they see it and so they set out to find and reunite Franny and her mystery hero.

I was hooked on this book from this laugh out loud funny opening scene and was immediately rooting for Franny to find happiness and to follow her dream of owning her own design business.  I was also hardcore rooting for the Subway QTs.  Even though their meeting on the subway was brief, there were definitely sparks, although you wouldn’t know it when they are finally reunited on the local news for an even more awkward encounter than their first one.  The hero, Hayes Montgomery III, handsome and chivalrous as he is, is truly as socially awkward as they come.  Pretty much everything he says comes out wrong and he is way more self-conscious than you would expect.  As much as I liked Franny, it’s Hayes who really stole my heart. His awkwardness is just so endearing, especially since you can also tell what a great guy he is. I loved watching he and Franny get to know each other.

In addition to the delightful slow burn romance between Franny and Hayes, there is also a fabulous cast of secondary characters. I especially loved Franny’s best friends, Cleo and Lola. They were so much fun to watch in action and I just loved how loyal and supportive they were of each other. They were total squad goals!

I was also a huge fan of the New York setting and thought the author did a brilliant job capturing the vibrant atmosphere of the city.  I was actually reading this novel while riding the train up to New York and it had me even more excited to experience the city than I already was.

In a New York Minute is a gem of a book. It’s filled with heart, humor, and heat and I highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys a slow burn romance as well as an engaging story that is laugh out loud funny. 4.5 STARS

23 replies
  1. Sam@WLABB
    Sam@WLABB says:

    You read books set in NYC while in NYC. Nice! I liked Sadie, but the romance was really secondary to her story, and I would have a like a bit more of it. I loved New York Minute. The friends were all top notch, but it was the hero who owned my heart.

    • Suzanne
      Suzanne says:

      Yeah, I think a little more focus on the romance would have pushed Sadie to 5 stars for me. In a New York Minute far exceeded my expectations going into it. I was actually sad when I got to the end because I wanted more.

  2. Angela
    Angela says:

    These both sound like fantastic reads – I love a reality tv aspect in a book, and NYC is always a great setting!

  3. Verushka
    Verushka says:

    It’s official: romances based around reality cooking shows is the perfect genre for me ❤️

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