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Friday, November 8, 2019

Review: Hot Mess by Emily Belden @GraydonHouse @harlequinbooks #emilybelden #bravethebacklist

Hot Mess 
by Emily Belden

Publisher: Graydon House
Publish Date: March 20, 2018
412 Pages
Genres: Contemporary, Romance

Twenty-something Allie Simon never imagined she’d fall for a recovering drug addict—but that was before she met Benji Zane, Chicago’s hottest up-and-coming chef, who’s known as much for his hard partying ways as for his unparalleled culinary skills. Six months into their relationship, the food and chemistry are out of this world, but the reality of living with a cooking wunderkind hasn’t exactly been all hearts and flowers.

Still, Allie’s convinced that her love is the key to fixing this talented man’s broken soul—so when Benji is offered his dream job as chef de cuisine for a new restaurant opening on Randolph Street, Chicago’s foodie hot spot, Allie agrees to invest her life savings in his future. But less than a month after she goes all in, Allie learns a heartbreaking lesson: addicts lie. Benji cracks under the pressure, relapses and disappears, bagging out not only on the restaurant, but on her, too.

Left with nothing but a massive withdrawal slip and a restaurant that absolutely must open in a matter of weeks, Allie finds herself thrust into a world of luxury and greed, cutthroat business and sensory delight. Lost in the mess of it all, she can either crumble completely or fight like hell for the life she wants and the love she deserves.

My Review:

YES TO THIS BOOK! One, the title speaks to me because this basically sums up my life as a whole.  Two, as someone who has worked in the restaurant industry from hostess to server to bartender to bar manager to FOH manager, I related SO much to this and understood the jargon, the hard work and the industry as a whole.  Three, as someone who typically drowns herself in toxic relationships, I understood Allie's want to make something this dysfunctional just WORK.  Nothing wrong with believing in someone but sometimes you have to know when to say NO.

Allie is a realistic, fun and very human character.  The ups and downs, her relationship with her parents and her best friends - I get it girl... I get it! (Also, I'm going to try that trick with the whole chicken - WIN!)  Like with most rom-com type reads, again, we already know where this is probably going to go and how it's going to end.  What I really enjoyed was feeling like I was right there.  It just spoke to me on so many levels and felt all the more real because I've been in very similar situations.

Zane is the bad boy you can't help but want, but you know is NOT GOOD FOR YOU.  Jared is the man you've been waiting for but can't seem to quite pull the trigger on.  Every one needs an Angela in their life and if Here actually existed, I would totally fly to Chicago just to eat there... or Here.

I'm just a sucker these days for these cutesie romance novels. 


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