Beauty and the Feast by Julia Barrett
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I enjoyed this book immensely.
Eva Raines works for a company that makes life easier for others, her specialty is creating amazing food. She has worked for several restaurants in the San Francisco area but likes the feel of working for this start-up company in the Napa Valley. Eva’s joy in life is making wonderful food for others and did not like working where she felt unappreciated and could not showoff her talents.
Gabriel Abbott is a wealthy business owner who grew up on the mean streets of Chicago. He is a self made millionaire and enjoys the finer things in life including a beautiful woman that will accompany him to events. He does not stay with the same woman very long, although many women want to be the one he selects for a lifetime. He has his eye on a lovely wealthy lawyer named Stephanie and decides to entertain her with an exquisite meal and a night at his cottage at the vineyard he owns.
Gabriel’s assistant hires a new company called All Things to All People to cater the evening. Since he wants to impress this new woman, he personally calls the chef to settle on the details of the dinner. While on the phone with Eva, he becomes intrigued with her manner and voice and wants to know more about her. As the day approaches all he can think about is how to get out of the evening with Stephanie and meet Eva. Eva is prepared to give this new client everything needed for an evening meant to seduce, she goes over early, takes a tour of his home and meets the caretaker to get extra details. That night while she is imagining how well they are enjoying the evening, Gabriel is driving Stephanie home without getting out of the car. His excuse at the time much is to say he does not want to expand on the relationship now. Not wanting to waste the wonderful dinner, he sits down to enjoy the meal while thoughts of Eva go through his mind.
Eva and Gabriel meet soon after the dinner and the chemistry is instant. Gabriel wants to know everything about Eva and she is very interested in him. As their relationship progresses Gabriel has some family issues deal with and Eva seems to have an enemy that wants to destroy everything she has gained. The story is fun and flirty and the characters are interesting and you want to find out what happens to them. I also enjoyed reading about the food Eva prepares and loved the recipes and notes about some of the ingredients at the end. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and would look forward to reading other stories by Julia Barrett.
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