Bittersweet by Sarina Bowen
Series: True North #1
Also in this series: Bittersweet, Steadfast (True North #2), Steadfast, Keepsake, Bountiful (True North, #4), Speakeasy (True North, #5)
Publisher: Rennie Road Books, Self-Published
Publication Date: June 14th 2016
Genres: New Adult
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Farmers make the earth move.
The last person Griffin Shipley expects to find stuck in a ditch on his Vermont country road is his ex-hookup. Five years ago they’d shared a couple of steamy nights together. But that was a lifetime ago.
At twenty-seven, Griff is now the accidental patriarch of his family farm. Even his enormous shoulders feel the strain of supporting his mother, three siblings and a dotty grandfather. He doesn’t have time for the sorority girl who’s shown up expecting to buy his harvest at half price.
Vermont was never in Audrey Kidder’s travel plans. Neither was Griff Shipley. But she needs a second chance with the restaurant conglomerate employing her. Okay—a fifth chance. And no self-righteous lumbersexual farmer will stand in her way.
They’re adversaries. They want entirely different things from life. Too bad their sexual chemistry is as hot as Audrey’s top secret enchilada sauce, and then some.
Warning: Contains sexual situations, gourmet yumminess, a steamy outdoor shower and proof that farmers don't mind getting dirty.
Keywords: Vermont, sexy romance, lumbersexuals, not cowboys, hard cider, good times, steamy kisses and homemade ice cream.
Bittersweet was such a sweet read. I fell in love with Griffin Shipley, his farm and his family.
Griffin Shipley and Audrey Kidder hooked up a couple times in college. Griff wanted more, but Audrey never returned his calls. Although he was drafted out of college to play professional football, when his father died Griff chose to come home to work the family farm. Five years later, he’s in charge of the whole operation, which leaves little time for anything – or anyone – else. Which is why Audrey showing up out of the blue is both a gift and a nightmare. He would love nothing more than to strip her naked, but he doesn’t need the distraction – or the trouble she brings in the form of her employer.
Audrey struggled to find herself after high school. After failing out of two colleges, she went to culinary school and loved it. Now she’s interning at a major food company in hopes of winning a major showcase they’re hosting. Winner gets a brand new restaurant. She’s determined to win the showcase, but she has to maintain the status quo until then – which means convincing Grumpy Griff the farmer to sell her apples.
Griff was such a great hero. Gruff, sexy and no-nonsense. I loved his approach to life and farming. Audrey wasn’t as focused as Griff, but she really worked in her own way. She’d been told her whole life she wasn’t good enough, but she didn’t let that stop her from finding her place and pursuing her dream. I really loved Griff’s family and the workers on his farm. Though I loved Griff and enjoyed his romance with Audrey, they made the book for me. Jude, Zach and his siblings and mother were really the showstoppers.
I did struggle a bit with how lost Audrey seemed in the beginning. She was determined to get her own restaurant by winning the showcase, but there wasn’t a lot of focus on her as a chef. What we did see of her at work made her seem incompetent. It isn’t that I thought she couldn’t do it period, but I felt like she needed more experience first. I also struggled with her relationship with her mom. I would have liked to see that explored a bit more.
Despite that, this was a solid read. I fell into this book right away and didn’t come up for air until it was finished. Funny, sexy, sweet…Definitely another winner from Bowen.