Today is THE day!
My friend Irene Preston's newest m/m romance, A Taste of You, hits the streets today, and OMG this one is SO GOOD. It hit my kindle last night and kept me up way past my bedtime. There's Garrett and Carlo and good food and hot steamy fun. What else does a novel need?! But you don't need me to tell you that. Keep reading for the blurb and the excerpt, and see for yourself...and make sure you keep going till you get to the Rafflecopter giveaway at the bottom of the post! There's a $25 gift card at stake!
BlurbHell’s Kitchen has nothing on the flames Giancarlo and Garrett ignite at Restaurant Ransom...
Garrett Ransom is America’s hot chef du jour. He has a Michelin-starred restaurant in New York City, a hit reality TV show, and a new man in his bed every week. Yes, he secretly thinks his business partner, Giancarlo “Carlo” Rotolo, is hotter than a ghost pepper, but he would never jeopardize their friendship with a fling. Then Garrett overhears some juicy gossip among the crew and realizes he’ll have to break Giancarlo’s cardinal rule, no banging the staff - for Carlo’s own good, of course. Just a taste of Carlo should be plenty. Long-term relationships aren’t on Garrett’s menu.
Giancarlo’s been in love with Garrett forever. He’s sure Garrett will eventually realize they are destined to be more than business partners. But when Garrett installs his latest boyfriend as their new chef d’cuisine and announces plans to leave Carlo in New York while he opens a second restaurant on the west coast, Carlo is forced to re-evaluate his life.
Can a high-strung British chef and a nice Italian boy from Brooklyn find the perfect fusion of fine-dining and family-style?
(Irene gave me 3 excerpt choices and day-um was it hard to settle on one! I went for intensity, but at the end of this snippet there's a jump to the whole first chapter on her website that you should totally take advantage of.)
He stood back up, still dripping, reached for the glass on the dish rack next to the sink, and spoke without turning around.
No, of course Garrett wouldn’t make it easy. Carlo slugged down two glasses of water before turning around. He leaned back against the counter and tried to look relaxed, in charge, not a care in the world. This was his turf, damnit. He should have the advantage.
But he knew how he looked. He was standing in a pool of water and sweat. He had pit stains down to his knees. He was steaming. Literally steaming. Although, yes, he was still fuck-off pissed.
Garrett stood in front of him looking cooler than one of his citrus and champagne granitas. He looked totally lickable. He stood in Carlo’s kitchen as though he belonged there. As though he hadn’t just ripped his partner’s heart out and left him bleeding on the floor.
“Why are you here?”
Garrett managed to look incredulous. “You don’t think I’m actually going to accept your resignation?”
Hell. The goddamn saber-tooth was standing in front of him, and all Carlo wanted to do was step closer, bury his face in its neck, and let the scent of sugar and vanilla surround him while the damn thing eviscerated him.
He focused on his anger. Anger made his heart pound and his pulse race when he looked at Garrett, who had no right to let himself into this apartment after what he’d done. He had no right to treat his partner this way. He had no right to stand there sounding injured and looking like sex on stick.
Carlo did not want to lick him. He certainly didn’t want to bury his face in his neck and be seduced by that lie of a sweet scent. For the first time ever, Garrett was standing in his apartment and Carlo didn’t want to make love to him. He didn’t want to hold him close and beg him to stay.
He wanted to bend him over the nearest surface and bang some damn sense into him. Right. Fucking. Now.
HERE'S THE LINK to the first chapter. Go there. Do it. Then come back here for the buy links. You'll want to.
A Taste of You is available from ...
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a Rafflecopter giveaway And as long as we're all having fun together, here's my 5-star review... A Taste of You by Irene Preston
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Look, I try not to go crazy with the 5-star reviews, but this book does so many things right I really can't help myself. Garret and Giancarlo are long-time business partners. They run a hot New York restaurant together - Garret's the Chef (with a capital C) and Carlo is the businessman. They both want more from the relationship, but they've been friends for so long (and Garret's track record for relationships is so awful) that they hold onto their "no banging the staff" rule like it's the key to forever.
Except Garret is crazy...and I'm not being flippant. The guy has issues. He's a creative genius, but between his parents and his demons, he's not so much for the interpersonal skills. No one in the world understands him like Carlo, and in return he challenges Carlo, drawing him into a wider world than the little corner of Brooklyn where he grew up.
When Garret's dickishness goes too far and seriously risks his relationship with Carlo, his trump card is seduction. But what then? They've both got too much at stake for things to go wrong. And they could. Easily. Badly.
Garret's the reason this book got five stars from me. He could be easy to dislike, but I think Ms. Preston slipped in just enough vulnerability, glimpses of the naked, needy guy underneath the crazy, for him to work. Carlo is real, and I couldn't help but love him, even when he made me shake my head. The supporting cast - restaurant workers, Garret's boytoy, Carlo's family - are vital and well drawn and fun. And Ms. Preston sold me on the scene - the food, the lifestyle, the restaurant culture. This book took me outside my own life and showed me something different, and I loved it.
I recommend this book to anyone who likes realistic, high-stakes love stories, hot Italian men, crazy Brits, and food. Because YUM.
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