Title: Hot Under Pressure
Author: Louisa Edwards
My Rating: A+
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Rising Star Chef #3
Main Characters: Beck and Skye
Release Date: March 2012
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Links to Purchase:
Sexual Intensity: spicy
I received a copy of this book from the publisher and NetGalley in return for an honest review.
I didn't think that any of Louisa's books could top the amazing books that she has already written. I love her writing. I love the style of her books. I love the foodie themes. I love her characters. The first 20% of this book, I was devastated. It was okay, but it just didn't have the "oomph" that I expect from Louisa's books. There was lots of effort put into the setting up of this book, which was unexpected especially since this is the final in the series and we already knew the characters. But I promise you...wade through that first 20%. It's important. It's vital. It sets up this book so beautifully and so perfectly. The patience that you show through the first part will be rewarded later in the book...I promise you!
I think that I can honestly say that this is my favorite Louisa Edwards book ever. Skye & Beck? Who would have guessed at the depth of their history and their lives individually. The way that Louisa told their story...through the food competition...OMG, so brilliant and so creative and so emotionally moving. Yes, I was crying right along with everyone else during the finals scenes.
I have loved Beck's character ever since he was introduced. He's the huge, quiet guy in the corner and you just knew that quietness hid depths you just couldn't see. But even I was surprised at his story and how emotional he truly could become. OMG, the epilogue...GENIUS. It's making me teary-eyed even now thinking about it. This is a guy that, when he cares, he cares deeply. One of the best examples of this outside of the emotional scenes with Skye, is the way that he handles Win. Win and Beck's friendship...OMG, I loved that aspect of the book. Win is this exuberant, over the top personality, but he sees things and pushes Beck to go further. On the other side of this, Beck sees when Win needs encouragement or someone in his corner. Their friendship and camaraderie in this book was so much fun to read.
Another fabulous relationship in this book was Claire & Kane. This is a relationship that has developed slowly over the course of the three books. Again, this is another couple that is dealing with some fairly deep-seeded issues that just made my heart ache for them. Claire wants so much to trust her feelings for Kane and Kane just truly loves her. *ack* It's just so beautiful and heartbreaking. If there was a single thing that I could complain about in this book, it's that I wanted just a smidge more of Kane & Claire after they resolved their issues. I know, there really wasn't room in the book. I just wanted a tiny bit more just to assure myself that their HEA was going to last because these are two that are so in love that they truly deserve a Happily Ever After.
Bravo, Louisa! I expected great things from this book and you delivered BIG TIME! This book was gorgeous. Having the special guest for Beck at the finals was perfection. I loved the family aspect of these books and I love the Lundens. The epilogue was incredible in that we got to see how things settled out for everyone that we have come to love over the course of this series. You write characters that are so deep that I connect to them as a reader. Thank you for that. It makes reading your books so much fun and entertaining.
So when do we find out the details about your next writing venture???