Two to Tangle by Melissa Brayden

Two to Tangle is the second installment in Melissa Brayden’s, Tangle Valley Romance series. If you read her first book in this series, Entangled, you will remember chef extraordinaire, Gabriella Russo. In this romance not only does the chef whip up culinary delights, but she also opens the winery’s newest restaurant with the help of a local construction crew and their boss, Ryan Jacks. Did I mention romance and sparks, well there are quite a few of them between Gabriella and Ryan!

Ryan Jacks is somewhat of a player. Ryan lets the ladies, and there are a number of them, know she is down for fun between the sheets but that is all. She isn’t interested in the commitment of any type. That is until she meets the tough but sweet newest resident, Gabriella. When they meet she second-guesses all her old ways, the only problem is that her reputation is already firmly in place.

Gabriella is currently creating amazing dishes out of her food truck, but the end goal is to create a world class restaurant that sets Tangle Valley Vineyard miles above the rest. She’s finally creating the food she wants and has found happiness in the beauty of Whisper Wall, Oregon. Everything is going according to plan until she meets the stunning Ryan Jacks. As Ryan’s company begins building Gabrielle’s dream these two grow as friends and then more. The only problem is Ryan’s reputation and cold feet seem to get in the way.

Melissa Brayden does it again with a sweet and sexy romance that leaves you feeling content and full of happiness. As always the book is full of smiles, fabulous dialogue, and characters you wish were your best friends. You don’t have to read the first in the series to dive into this one, but I would recommend it. Trust me, read everything by Brayden, you will not be disappointed.

4 out of 5 stars

Publisher: Bold Strokes Books https://www.boldstrokesbooks.com/books/melissa-brayden-166-a

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Entangled by Melissa Brayden

Entangled by Melissa Brayden
Swoon! That is the best way to describe Brayden’s newest novel, Entangled. The book just makes you swoon. This book makes your heart happy. It is sweet, romantic, fun and there is wine. How can you not love that delicious combination?

Joey Wilder inherits her family’s small but mighty Oregon winery. The grapes, the land, it is her life and she loves it. She wants to make her family proud and continue making world-renowned wine but she has some changes she wants to make as well, and she does by bringing in two friends to take Tangle Valley Vineyard to the next level. As open as Joey is to some change, she is definitely not okay with the new resort that is opening up in her town.

Becca Crawford is amazing at what she does. Opening successful resorts are her jam and she is excited about her latest project, The Jade, is Whisper Wall, Oregon. She wants to make this place her home, finally putting all f her attention in one resort from the ground up. Becca is stunned to find out that most of the residents while polite really don’t want The Jade to open. She has some fancy footwork to do to get her neighbors to accept the resort and the hardest to win over might be Joey Wilder.

As always Melissa Brayden writes a really good book. While this isn’t my favorite of her works, I enjoyed my time with it immensely. Being the first in a series, Brayden had a lot of characters and settings to get the reader familiar with. This is where I think the book lost traction in the romance department. I wanted just a bit more one on one with Becca and Joey. Still a fantastic read, one I highly recommend.

3.75 stars out of 5

Publisher: Bold Strokes Books https://www.boldstrokesbooks.com/books/entangled-by-melissa-brayden-3283-b

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Blend by Georgia Beers

I really like the way Georgia Beers writes. I love the way she develops characters that are interesting, dynamic and well, hot. It’s been a while since I have read her stuff, the reasoning, I have not a clue why, but I am so glad I picked up her latest novel, Blend. This is a fantastic romance novel. So good, fabulous!

Lindsey Kent is the general manager of a wine bar, Vineyard. Lindsey is likable, cheerful and always has something positive to say. She loves her job. She lives and breathes wine and has an amazing relationship with Ellen Bradshaw, the owner of Vineyard. When Ellen tells her she is taking a sabbatical to explore the world, Lindsey is truly excited for the widow. What is is not excited about is learning that she will need to run all of Vineyard’s business decisions through Ellen’s youngest daughter, Piper.

Piper Bradshaw is the direct opposite of Lindsey. She is an ice queen with a hard, no-nonsense personality. Her job is in the financial sector, and she has learned to be hard-nosed and closed off to thrive in this male-dominated field. Piper’s work and the loss of her father two years ago has hardened Piper’s heart. She is a closed off control freak. Having to work with Lindsey throws her orderly world off-kilter.

These two get off on the wrong foot. Neither is excited about working with the other. Lindsey has big ideas of how to take Vineyard to the next level and draw in a younger hipper crowd. Piper is hesitant to change anything, not wanting to change anything her father created when opening the business. The butt heads, but as their time together increases the begin to see each other in a new light. The walls fall, and perceptions fall away. The chemistry between these to is dynamic and sexy.

You know a book is good, first when you don’t want to put it down. Second, you know its damn good, when your reading it and thinking, I’m totally going to read this one again. Great read and is absolutely a 5-star romance.

5 out of 5 stars

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The Crush by Susan X. Meagher

The Crush by Susan X. Meagher made me want to drink wine. Oh no not it a bad way, in a very good way. This book is long in length but it is also chock full of depth and detail.

Nicola Bagnolesi is an advertising sales executive for her father’s advertising firm in Chicago. She is happy with her life. What more could she ask for her life revolves around partying with clients, make sales and hanging out with her girlfriend if she feels up to it. All of this changes when her father tells her she is being relocated to Italy. Aldo Bagnolesi has just inherited his family’s birthright, a winery in Tuscany. The catch is Aldo is not ready to retire just yet. He needs Nicola to be its caretaker until he can hand the company over to her brother Lorenzo.

Nicola has zero desire to babysit a winery for two years. She is very gently told that this is what her family needs her to do. This is her father’s dream and she needs to get on board. She reluctantly agrees, leaving the only place she has ever lived, breaks up with her girlfriend and boards a plane one way to Italy.

Pretty early on she figures out that this is a disaster all around. She is unprepared for this journey, and the family estate is in shambles. Cue despair!

Nicola has a chance encounter with a beautiful Italian woman name Chiara Bellini in a bar while visiting her aunt’s city of Florence. These two hit it off immediately and well things heat up to boiling pretty rapidly. The sexy time is hot, hot, hot!

A romance evolves from a one night stand, but don’t worry the push and pull of an established relationship does evolve. Our two leading ladies must work to prove that the can work together as well as be a couple. Add to the drama is Aldo is a giant a-hole and treats his daughter terribly while she works to launch his dream.

The setting and scenic descriptions are stunning.  I found it very easy to visualize where Nicola was and what she was experiencing. While I loved the setting, and the descriptions of wine making, I think my favorite thing about this book is the evolution of Nicola. She was a high flying party girl in Chicago, a little spoiled and a whole lot of coddled. She became strong, determined woman, who fought for what she believed in and backed it up with hard work and sheer determination. That transformation was stunning! She went toe to toe with her father, aunt and anyone that got in her way, all the while being tender and sweet to Chiara. Got to love that!

Really lovely book, that is lengthy and well researched.  You will not be disappointed if you don’t mind investing in the book (about twice the length of your average romance). You will have a lot to work with, but it is all worth it in the end.

4 out of 5 stars

The Crush
by Susan X Meagher
Link: http://amzn.com/B00D0DK630