Review: A Recipe for Romance by Lara Van Hulzen

Sunday, April 16, 2017

A Recipe for Romance by Lara Van Hulzen
Series: Bachelor Bake-Off, Book 5
Publisher: Tule Publishing
Genre: Contemporary Romance A Recipe for Romance Cover
Source: Publisher
Buy it here: Amazon | B&N

Wes planned a drive by trip to Marietta, Montana to help his dad close a business deal and then to head back to his life in New York. But when his dad volunteers him for the Bachelor Bake-Off to commemorate a local fallen first responder, Wes can’t say no, even though Marietta holds painful memories and baking eludes his skill set.

After an accident sidelines Noelle Olsen’s career as a dancer, she moves to Montana to pursue a new dream: opening a dance studio in Marietta’s historic and charming downtown. When one of her students suckers her into helping the handsome Wes St. Clare whip up some winning recipes, Noelle finds herself dreaming about more than teaching dance.

Falling in love wasn’t part of Wes’ plans, and definitely not in Marietta, and as Noelle learns more about Wes and his business dealings, she fears she’ll lose her business along with her heart. Will cozy kitchens and a nudge from the St. Claire family help Wes and Noelle find the love they didn’t know they were looking for?

A Recipe for Romance is a Hallmark movie-ready story. It’s sweet, has picture-perfect characters, and the story has a reliable, satisfying plot. It’s not the freshest story out there, but it has charm and is a cozy read.

Noelle is a former ballet dancer looking for a fresh start after a tragedy turned her life upside down. She’s sweet and caring, and I definitely liked her, but I wanted to delve more into her character, her past… I wanted something that made her stand out to me. As for Wes, he’s a bit too boilerplate billionaire for my personal preferences. He’s rich, handsome, is intrigued by Noelle because she’s not interested in his money, and he can be the knight in shining armor with the wealth and power to save the damsel in distress from losing her business. It’s a story I’ve read a dozen times before and unfortunately author Lara Van Hulzen doesn’t add a fresh twist to liven the story up. That being said, A Recipe for Romance isn’t a bad book – not in the slightest. There’s nothing to dislike about it and it’s a fast and sweet read when you’re looking for something light with a satisfying happily ever after.

A Recipe for Romance is the fifth book in the multi-author Bachelor Bake-Off series, but it can easily be read as a standalone. As relative newcomers to Marietta, neither Wes nor Noelle had much of a connection to the town, which was a bit of a bummer for a small town romance. Still, while this book wasn’t exactly my cup of tea I will say that it’s sweet and the romance is light and lovely. And if Ms. Van Hulzen writes a book for Wes’s widower brother, Mike, I will definitely be first in line for that tale. Mike stole the show for me every time he appeared on the page, and I hope Ms. Van Hulzen has a happily ever after waiting for him.


FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

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