Thursday, July 11, 2013

Book Review, Guest Blog & Giveaway: Dishing Up Desire by Barbara DeLeo

Dishing Up Desire by Barbara DeLeo
Publisher: Entangled Indulgence
Publish Date: July 8, 2013
eBook 139 pages
Fiction, Contemporary Romance

Today I welcome Barbara DeLeo, author of the new Indulgence title, Dishing Up Desire, a fun contemporary that puts a hot former model now turned PR person with a celebrity chef who is having some image problems.  Barbara's here today to talk about her writing room. I love seeing where authors write!  Check out her guest blog and then check out my review.  And also make sure and comment to win a copy of one of Barbara's earlier books (ends today!) and enter the tour-wide giveaway as  well.

My Writing Room by Barbara DeLeo

Hi Crystal, and thanks so much for having me on My Reading Room. I thought that since I’m in your reading room you might like to see my writing room!

We moved to small town New Zealand for my husband’s job—he’s a winemaker—so we’re surrounded by beautiful countryside and lots and lots of product! I have two sets of twins so we needed a pretty big house and luckily for me there was a great office space.  We live on half an acre which is a blessing and a curse because when I’m writing I swing between knowing the longer I spend on a book the higher the weeds will grow, and when a book isn’t going well all I want to do is go outside and read in a hammock.

The three things I have to have before I start work every day are silence, a strong cup of coffee and my writing dog Cosmo – if any of those things are missing it makes me a grumpy writer.

In my latest book, Dishing up Desire, the hero Blake Matthews doesn’t have a place that he calls home. He’s an ex-international model with an image consulting empire and he travels the country. But there’s a reason he doesn’t put down roots, a reason that he can’t trust people, and it has everything to do with the way he looks.

I’d love to hear about the place you read, or write, or the place you’d love to have. I have an e-copy of an earlier book, Contract for Marriage to give away to one lucky commenter and at the end of my blog tour we’ll be drawing the name of one commenter from all of the blogs to win a deluxe “Dishing up Desire” chef’s apron and a $50 Amazon gift card!

My Review:
Dishing Up Desire is another wonderful addition to the Entangled Publishing Indulgence line.  I love these shorter novels, they really seem to fit in my summer so far and provide me with wonderful stories to get lost in for a couple of hours. 

Character Development:
Kirin and Blake, two very interesting characters with somewhat mysterious pasts.  Both have a drive in the present to make something of themselves.  Kirin really just wants to get her life and career back on track.  Blake has something to prove by changing public opinion of Kirin and then he will have the company of his dreams.  But along the way of course there is romance.  But first I enjoyed getting to know Kirin and Blake.  Kirin was a little hard to like at first, but as I got to know her through the book, I really began to enjoy her and see a little bit of the everyday woman in her.  Blake is flat out hot and a good man when you really dig into who he is.  I liked him, liked how he falls for Kirin and like how he grows in the book.  Both characters have growth and are well-developed for a short book.  Also the romance is not instantaneous if that is one of the things that bothers you about a shorter book.  The attraction is there, but the romance develops a little slower.

The plot is built around Kirin and Blake, first in the restoration of her image and second in their romance.  It's a fast read and kept me engaged through the entire book.  I wanted to turn each page and see how the plot would unfold and how Kirin and Blake would develop.

Final Thoughts:
If you are looking for a short read to jump-start your reading and satisfy your taste for romance, then Dishing Up Desire is just the book for you.  With interesting characters and a different plot, it was one of the books that has started me back on a reading binge.  These Indulgence titles are just the right pace and length for these busy summer days!

My Rating: 4.5/5.0

About the Book:

Image consultant Blake Matthews is facing his toughest PR challenge yet: salvage the image of celebrity chef Kirin Hart. Once he does, he’ll be able to acquire LA’s most successful PR firm. But Kirin’s no easy fix. She’s stubborn about changing her comfortable homemaker image, and is being sued for sexual harassment by a junior staffer. She needs a PR lifeline fast. Only problem is Blake wants more than to make her over...

Kirin doesn’t need a makeover—her fans love her as she is. But she could lose everything if the sex scandal and reputation that has followed doesn’t get quashed right away. Kirin agrees to let model-perfect Blake work his magic for two weeks, but things get complicated when she can’t deny the way her body flares to life whenever he’s near.

You can find Dishing Up Desire at:

About the Author (from 

Barbara DeLeo’s first book, co-written with her best friend, was a story about beauty queens in space. She was eleven, and the sole, handwritten copy was lost years ago, much to everyone’s relief. It’s some small miracle that she kept the faith and is now living her dream of writing sparkling contemporary romance with unforgettable characters.

After completing degrees in Psychology and English then travelling the world, Barbara married her winemaker hero and had two sets of twins.
She still loves telling stories about finding love in all the wrong places, with not a beauty queen or spaceship in sight.

Find Barbara and her books here:

Barbara's Books at Amazon
Barbara's Books at B&N
Barbara's Books at iTunes

Today's giveaway is for one commenter and you can win a copy of Barbara's book Contract for Marriage.

The tour-wide giveaway is for a "Dishing Up Desire" chef's apron and a $50 Amazon Gift Certificate.

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***I received this book from the publisher for an honest review.  I was not compensated in any other way except receiving the book for free.  ***