Wednesday, October 21, 2015

5 Stars for Nuts by Alice Clayton

 The New York Times bestselling author of Wallbanger and Rusty Nailed is back with Nuts, the first in a brand new series set in New York’s beautiful Hudson Valley.

Roxie Callahan is a private chef to some of Hollywood’s wealthiest, and nastiest, calorie-counting wives. After a dairy disaster implodes her carefully crafted career in one fell ploop, she finds herself back home in upstate New York, bailing out her hippie mother and running the family diner.

When gorgeous local farmer Leo Maxwell delivers her a lovely bunch of organic walnuts, Roxie wonders if a summer back home isn’t such a bad idea after all. Leo is heavily involved in the sustainable slow food movement, and he likes to take his time. In all things. Roxie is determined to head back to the west coast as soon as summer ends, but will the pull of lazy fireflies and her very own Almanzo Wilder be enough to keep her home for good?

Salty. Spicy. Sweet. Nuts. Go on, grab a handful

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What I thought about NUTS

Professional chef Roxie leaves the big city, reluctantly returning home to her small town and determined to stay just as long as her mother needs her to take over the local diner and no longer.  That's until she meets the local farmer. Leo has a sense of humor to match Roxie's and she can't quite resist his body, but it's his love of what he does that really grabs her attention.

These two are great together.  The humor is off the charts with whip-cracking dialogue and a sense of joy that just made this romance so very sweet.But what really got to me was that this isn't just a romance -- it's an ode to a way of life.  Small town life. Where everyone really does know your name and your business. 

Nuts pulls back the curtain on the charms of living in a small town and does an excellent job of bringing value to a way of life that is slowly dying out. When Leo explains his farm operations, I was riveted, not just by the description, but by how Alice Clayton captures the joy in working the earth.  Living in a farming community myself, I totally got both of these characters and I fell in love with both of them.

Leo and Roxie have some decisions to make before they can move forward and that provides some conflict for this story.  It's not overdone though and the lightness of this story isn't compromised. There was a maturity to these characters that I loved as they dealt with their life choices without regret.

I don't read a lot of romantic comedy mostly because it's hard to pull off, but Nuts was just great and I enjoyed every page. I'm sort of sad that it's over, I enjoyed it that much.

Recommended for readers looking for a light, playful romance with a touch of drama and a lovely message. 

ARC provided for review.


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