Thursday, March 5, 2015

Book Review: Baked Fresh (Portland Heat #2) by Annabeth Albert

Baker Vic Degrassi lives a pretty simple life. He's creating quite a name for himself in Portland food community and he also recently lost 100 pounds after losing family members to heart disease. After years of making resolutions (attending culinary school, losing weight, etc.), he decides that his next resolution is to find a boyfriend.

Robin, a volunteer at a homeless shelter, recently got out of a relationship and is not interested in dating at all. He's had a rough life and believes it would be simpler if he just concentrated on his work and cast romance and sex aside.

Vic and Robin have an easy rapport and get along very well. Vic has had a crush on Robin for a while, and would love nothing more than to date the volunteer, but Robin's "no dating" stance hampers his plans a bit. Will he be able to break through all of Robin's walls and find the love he so desperately yearns for?

I really liked Vic. He is a total sweetheart who also possessed a protective side that was very attractive. Even though he'd lost weight, he still sees himself as overweight and his self esteem suffers because of it. A character in the novella states that if Vin Diesel and The Rock had a child, Vic would be it. In my opinion, that's quite a hot combination! My heart went out to Vic when he never thought he was good enough or didn't deserve what others have. I rooted for him throughout the entire book.

Unfortunately, I didn't feel the same about Robin. Even though he had his issues, he still seemed quite selfish. Everything was about how he felt and how people treated and reacted to him. His response to a misunderstanding between himself and Vic seemed way over the top and unnecessary. I also didn't like that Vic practically had to beg and plead and grovel with Robin when he didn't need to.

In terms of the writing, it seemed a little different than the first book in the series. I found that references to Vic's stomach souring or dropping or churning were overused and often wished that his fear, nervousness or apprehension could have been described in a different way. There were a lot of sex scenes (some with mild D/s undertones) and they started to run together after a while.

Overall, this is a nice story and a quick read. I didn't feel the same connection to the characters that I did with Served Hot, but I did enjoy getting to know Vic.

2.5 stars

Release date: April 13, 2015

A copy of this book was provided by the publisher, via Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review.

Buy links
Kensington Press | Amazon

~ M

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