Bachelor's Special by Christine Warner
Jill Adgate wants three things from life: a successful catering business, a family, and the love of an exceptional man. What she has is no job, a mounting pile of bills, and her outspoken best friend—who sets her up on a blind date with the man who inadvertently ruined Jill's life.
Chet Castle is a businessman who has everything, except the ability to trust. Burned by a money-hungry fiancée, he refuses to get involved in any relationship that has a shelf life longer than a head of lettuce.
Intrigued by her ambition—and determined to get her in bed—Chet offers Jill the chance of a lifetime: work as his live-in chef and he'll help her get her catering business off the ground. When sparks fly in the kitchen, Jill realizes what's cooking is a recipe for disaster…
About the Author
Christine Warner is living her dream in rural Michigan along with her husband, three children, one laptop and a much loved assortment of furry friends.
Besides laughing and a good round of humor, she enjoys spending time with her family, cooking, reading, writing but no arithmitic. A confessed people watcher, she finds inspiration for her stories in everyday activities. She loves to read and write about strong heroes and determined, sometimes sassy, heroines.
Read an Excerpt
By Christine Warner, Karen Grove
Entangled Publishing, LLCCopyright © 2013 Christine Warner
All rights reserved.
Fifteen minutes ahead of schedule, Jill Adgate nervously pressed her thumb into the beading of her small evening purse until it hurt, then pulled the slip of paper from inside to verify she had the correct restaurant along with the right date and time.
Unfortunately for her, she did.
She should never have allowed Mel to set this up. Better yet, the moment Mel had whipped out the glossy photograph featuring the familiar knee-shaking smile of her future brother-in-law and declared, "he's the perfect man for you," Jill should have stood and run from the room.
Instead, shocked speechless, she'd done nothing more than smile, nod, and agree to a date with a man who shared blame for her termination from the coveted sous-chef position at Creations.
Chet Castle — at least she now had a name to go along with the handsome face from her past.
No wonder he'd looked familiar that fateful night. He could almost be the twin of Mel's boss, Jared — the man her best friend was now engaged to.
Unbelievably, she'd played kissy-face a year ago with tonight's blind date. If you could even term it a blind date at this point. She closed her eyes, reliving for the millionth time the way the man — Chet — had kissed her with such force, confidence, and passion she'd lost all track of time and place. Only to be fired. Never mix business with pleasure. She had broken her cardinal rule.
She'd been humiliated by her body's betrayal to a man she'd only laid eyes on for sixty seconds — if that. What had gotten into her? She'd practically fallen into his arms with no introduction — hell, she had fallen into his arms with no introduction.
Unemployed. Fired. Little did she know it would be the first in a line of several terminations.
Jill shifted in her seat. Anxiety clawed at her stomach and she ran her fingers down the vintage, black Chantilly-lace cocktail dress, gaining comfort from the feel of the material. She'd gotten her wish — a place to wear the dress purchased from her favorite vintage clothing boutique — but the giddiness was short-lived as her nerves took over.
Funny how her dream of working in a fine restaurant such as this had changed in a year's time to one where she owned a catering business. She sucked in a deep breath, filling her lungs with the tantalizing scents of everything from prime rib, seafood, and heavy sauces to delectable desserts. Crisp fabrics rustled in the background as discreet wait staff stood on alert, ready to cater to each diner's needs. Soft candlelight cast subtle shadows around the room. Tiny specks of light, like fireflies flickering off the low ceiling, added a depth of intimacy and comfort.
Jill's heartbeat calmed as she took in her surroundings. She'd always wanted to dine at Crosswinds, but this restaurant's reputation guaranteed close to a six-month wait for reservations, even midweek. Yet one mention of a reservation in the name of Chet Castle and the distinguished gray-haired maître d' had led her to a secluded section in a candlelit corner — an area she felt sure would be reserved for special clientele only.
Dots of perspiration lined her spine as she adjusted her position and sat tall. She'd almost changed her mind about coming tonight. Now she wished she had. What the heck was she doing?
Chet Castle would recognize her for sure.
Or would he? She'd been dressed in her chef coat and flat-top hat with her hair pulled into a tidy bun underneath. Now she wore a dusting of make-up and her hair cascaded down to mid-back with tiny wisps framing her face. With luck, twelve months and her fantastic vintage dress would alter her appearance enough.
The picture of Chet that Mel had tacked to Jill's fridge with four plastic magnets, each depicting a different piece of colorful fruit, came to mind. Shivers raced across her flesh. No way could she deny her attraction. Even after a year, something about this man affected her to the point of irrational thought.
Hell, she'd let him kiss her within seconds of meeting him. What had possessed her to allow such a thing? She wasn't that type of girl.
A large clap of noise from the kitchen pulled her from her musings. This was crazy. She shouldn't be sitting here.
Calm down. It's dinner. One. Simple. Non-obligatory dinner.
Who was she trying to fool? This wasn't a simple dinner. Even if he didn't remember her as the easy girl in the kitchen, there'd be no chance of a future between them, so this date was a waste of time. She'd have to fess up that they'd met before — and then he'd want to know where and when. Date over.
Jill gulped down the panic lodged in her throat. Besides, what would a man of Chet's stature see in a girl like her? A man that rich wouldn't be interested in a nobody chef who'd been fired from four jobs in the last twelve months and who'd used twenty of her last fifty dollars to put enough gas in her vehicle to meet him tonight. Unease gnawed at her from the heels up.
Time was still on her side. A nice apologetic note left with the maître d' and she'd be on her way.
Jill grabbed her purse and scooted back from the table. Halfway out of her seat, her world tilted as a man walked — correction, swaggered — toward her. A man with eyes of melted dark chocolate.
Oh yes, she'd recognize him anywhere. To see him up close and personal after all this time set her body in motion. Her heart pounded, blood rushed through her ears, and her vision — once twenty-twenty — fogged over and tunneled.
His short brown hair with just a hint of a wave bounced with every step, drawing her attention to the fascinating arch of his eyebrows. So dark and well shaped, they were the perfect accent to frame the intense color of his eyes — such a deep brown that they appeared almost black.
His gaze swept over her, and hot, spine-tingling sparks coursed through her veins until she could hardly breathe. It was the same electricity she felt that night in the kitchen. This man exuded pure power, charisma, and sex.
When her butt reconnected with the plush seat, she sat rigid, shoulders pinned to the back of her chair. She positioned her ankles around the chair legs as if holding on for dear life.
He stopped beside her and tucked his cell inside his pocket. Jill forced herself to look up so she wasn't staring into the zipper of his trousers, although that was an awe-inspiring view.
He held out his hand, and somebody — it must've been her — placed her fingers inside his rough palm. Bursts of energy traveled every inch of her body. Senses she hadn't experienced since they'd heated up her work station jolted her memories.
A swell of fear raced through her. Had he recognized her?
"And you must be Mr. Castle." Was that breathy sex-kitten voice hers?
"The one and only, but call me Chet." He released her fingers and slid into the seat across from her. A slight flicker of apprehension — or recognition — filled his eyes, then was gone.
Maybe her overworked imagination saw things not there. She hoped.
"Jill." She sought the linen napkin on the table, stopping herself just in time from picking it up to fan herself. Her memory, along with the photo on her fridge, didn't do his features justice. His strong chin, perfectly proportioned nose, full lips — made for kissing — were molded from the strongest gene pool. He had it going on, no doubt.
She squirmed beneath his stare. His gaze traveled from her throat, following the golden chain of her locket to the heart-shaped neckline of her dress, and concentrated on the swell of her breasts. Damn.
Heat raced across her face, and she thrust her hand over her chest, clutching her napkin in a stranglehold to block his view. Maybe she should've chosen something with a higher neckline.
"So you're friends with Jared's receptionist-turned-fiancée." His voice trailed ribbons of silk down her spine.
"Mel," she choked out.
He nodded, one side of his mouth lifting in a ghost of a smile. "And like me, you were talked into a blind date."
Jill cleared her throat. "Ever since they've become an item they've wanted nothing more than to set me —"
"— up on dates so you can be in love, too." Sarcasm flecked his voice.
Not good. He wasn't any more interested in this blind date than she. Of course, his reasons probably didn't match hers.
"Exactly." Jill folded her hands in her lap, squeezing her palms tight. Talk about awkward.
"How many setups does this make for you?" Chet leaned back in his chair, the picture of relaxation and confidence, or maybe a bored clock- watcher.
She almost laughed as he glanced at the platinum-colored watch on his wrist. "My first. You?"
"I think you're either my fourth or fifth in the last few weeks."
"You must be a tough customer."
He chuckled, and the sincere rumble relaxed the tension binding her shoulders.
"Let's just say I have trust issues, but all the others were Jared's picks. Mel said you were different."
"Oh." Jill dusted her palms along her dress. Thanks, Mel, for raising the expectation bar. Too bad she hadn't been able to make her getaway before he'd shown up.
He leaned in, studying her with an intenseness that sent shots of awareness through her. "Jill Adgate, hmm? There's something about you. Have we met before?"
"I-I don't think so." Yep, she'd done it and lied. Missed the perfect chance to come clean and end this torture.
"There's something familiar about you."
Jill shifted in her seat, focusing her attention over his left shoulder to avoid eye contact. "I doubt we travel in the same circles."
"Mel and Jared mentioned you're a chef." He smiled, but his eyes still bore into her as if dissecting her inch by inch.
"With plans to start my own catering business." Pride echoed in her voice, even though it didn't transfer to the nervous energy bouncing beneath her skin.
"Did you go through the accelerated culinary program?" The tenor of his voice tingled in her ears, and she pinched the inside of her wrist. "You don't look old enough to be an accomplished chef, but Mel assured me you're quite good at your job."
The crease between his brow disappeared as he leaned in. "Maybe I've seen you at the restaurant where you work?"
Panic rippled across her tummy. "I'm between jobs while I work on my catering business."
"What made you decide to become a chef?" His mouth twitched with a hint of playfulness.
In an instant, she relaxed. "Since I was a girl, I've always loved to cook. The way creating a dish involves all your senses. Sound, taste, smell. I like to incorporate variety. Music in the background, the subdued and sometimes pungent aromas of spices, the taste of a good glass of wine —"
"You have a lot more depth than I first realized, Jill Adgate."
"Women are like that."
He grinned. "Lesson learned."
"What about you? Mel mentioned you run the family business?" She took a quick sip from her water goblet to moisten her dry throat.
"When my father retired I took the reins. It was rough going at first, but after several years things are back on track."
"Your brother said you brought the family business back to life. That must've been a lot of long hours and hard work."
"Running a business is definitely hard work. Are you sure you're up to it?"
She lifted her chin. "I'm capable of handling a challenge."
"Good for you." He rested his elbows on the table, clasping his hands as if settling in for a long chat. "I like how passionate you are when you talk about cooking. Tell me more."
Jill's heart stopped and she sat back as he leaned in toward her. His nearness drew all oxygen from her lungs. "What would you like to know?"
Calm down. You can talk cooking in your sleep. Then how come her heart had found a new home in her knees?
"When you're in the kitchen, do you have one area you work at a time, as in the appetizer or the entrée, or do you jump from course to course?" That slight twitch at the left corner of his mouth drew her attention and her tummy somersaulted.
"Depends on your rank, and also the kitchen. Each one runs differently, depending on the head chef."
"Does each kitchen have their own baker, or do they hire out the work to a bakery?" His eyes sparkled.
"Again, it depends on the kitchen and the restaurant."
"Are you a chef who can manage both? Can you cook the appetizers and entrées as well as desserts?"
She grabbed the water glass from the table and took another shaky sip before lowering it back to the white linen tablecloth. Several droplets spilled over the edge, dotting her knuckles.
Their encounter involved a dessert. A cake, to be exact.
Coincidence? "Y-yes," she squeaked.
"Even birthday cakes?"
Jill shoved her chair back. The sound, like fingernails on a chalkboard, dragged down her spine until she clenched her teeth. Oh my God, he knows.
"How — What ...?" Jill couldn't think. She stood so fast she lost her footing, but before she tumbled into the table, Chet caught her in his strong arms. His heat smoldered through his jacket, sending darts of awareness across her body. She pushed at his chest with flat palms, but he didn't budge. More than likely because her strength matched that of an overcooked noodle.
Lights overhead twinkled, fading from bright to dim. The ground beneath her quaked — or maybe it was her legs giving out. Jill squeezed her eyes closed when the room swam then spun in a dizzying motion. Unsure how much longer she could remain standing, she grabbed the lapels of his jacket for support.
"Take a breath." He held her firm. His fingers dug into her flesh — not cruelly, but with a silent strength. He steered her to the chair and folded her into it.
Jill gulped for air, then felt, rather than saw, a glass of water thrust into her hands. When her fingers folded over Chet's warm grasp, her stomach squirmed. She drank heavily from the crystal goblet. Cool liquid put out the fire burning its way up her throat.
"I'm sorry," she choked out between puffs of air.
"For what?" His lips softened, curving into a lopsided smile.
Insanity filled her, as it had done that night. She ached to press her mouth against his. Instead, she leaned back, dragging the cedar-chip scent of his cologne along with her. She despised herself. Where the hell had her common sense gone?
"For the c-cake."
A low-pitched, sexy throb escaped his lips — a chuckle being squashed. Although it should've been reassuring, her brain didn't inform the panic chewing its way up her backbone.
"I'm over it." He brushed a wisp of hair from her cheek. The heat of his touch did crazy things to her flesh, and she sucked in a breath of air as warmth spread through her.
"When did you know?"
"The moment you mentioned cooking."
"How?" Her heart risked leaking out the peep-toe tips of her heels.
"Your face lit up, your eyes glowed. But what really sealed the deal was your smile. I'll never forget the curve of your lips when you smile. From the moment I walked into that kitchen —"
Chet pulled the water glass from her fingers.
"I don't think I could ever forget you. I'm not blind. You're easy on the eyes, for sure. Even more so when you talk about something you regard with such passion."
Her heart skipped a beat at his thinly veiled compliment, but at the same time a line of moisture dotted the nape of her neck for the predicament she found herself in.
"So you left employment at Creations to go it alone?"
Jill took a gulp of air to calm her nerves. Chet had no idea she'd been fired.
She attempted to shake her head, but the only motion she managed was a slight shrug.
"So how do I go about reserving your well-honed chef skills?"
Her knees quaked, and she pressed them together to stop them from shaking. "I'm not officially in business yet."
She waved away his words. "Boring mumbo-jumbo stuff that I'm sure you don't want to hear."
"You're wrong. I do want to hear." His lopsided grin spread until it was a full-fledged smile. Tiny lines fanned out from the edges of his deep-set eyes, and he raked a look over her as if she sat before him naked. Almost as potent as the look he'd given her a year ago.
Excerpted from Bachelor's Special by Christine Warner, Karen Grove. Copyright © 2013 Christine Warner. Excerpted by permission of Entangled Publishing, LLC.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Bachelor's Special is a fabulous, tasty summer read. The heroine Jill Adgate is spicy and quick. She is a strong, empowered woman who knows what she wants. Chet Castle is jaded by his past and terrified of the things that Jill makes him feel. Jill wants it all, Love, Marriage, Career. Chet wants no strings, afraid to get burned again. Throw in a trumped up business deal that gives them both what they want, some miscommunication and you have a hot summer read that will make your taste buds tingle and your toes curl.
From the utterly delicious moment Jill Adgate doused Chet Castle with birthday cake, I was hooked on this story. Despite (or perhaps because of) that disastrous introduction, he offers her the job of a lifetime - act as his personal chef and he'll help her get her catering business off the ground. Now, you know when a man makes an offer a woman she can't refuse that the best kind of trouble is about to follow, and Ms. Warner doesn't disappoint. Sexual tension sizzles, then explodes when they get down and dirty in the pool. (SO HOT!) This story is a roller coaster ride complete with actual substance, which serves to totally invest readers into every twist and turn of the plot. Whether you're longing for summer or just want to bask in something smokin', you can't go wrong with the smexiness generated by Chet and Jill. Ms. Warner is on my auto-buy list, and stories like this one put her there. It's a sweet, sexy read that satisfies!
I loved this book! Jill was such a great character, allsugar and spice. Other than having a hard time with the name (silly, I know), Chet was also fantastic. They do a lot of dancing around each other - and with each other! The obstacles also really work and make the story that much better because they force Jill and Chet to be more self-aware. Overall, this was a solid, fun and sweet story.
What more could a reader ask for when a story has yummy food, a hunky brooding type of guy, and a steamy romance? Jill Adgate is an up and coming chef who dreams about owning her own catering business. Chet Castle is a handsome rich businessman who was burned in the past by a money hungry ex-fiancee. He doesn't believe in love, has trust issues, and doesn't want a long term relationship. One night their paths cross when Jill is the chef in charge of Chet's grandmother's eightieth birthday dinner. With a falling birthday cake and a passionate kiss and embrace, Jill's life is quickly turned upside down, she's fired, blackballed within the local culinary industry, and left with a ruined reputation. Fast forward one year later... Jill is set up on a blind date with her best friend Mel's future brother-in-law, Chet Castle! After a year, the overwhelming attraction between them is still there. He has to see her again, nothing long term - that's not his style, he's gun-shy when it comes to relationships, but he's determined to get her in his bed. Feeling responsible for getting her fired from her chef's position a year ago, he offers a business arrangement: work two months as his in-house chef, and he'll help her get her catering business started. With no other options available to her, Jill agrees to the arrangement. But when the romantic sparks start to heat up in the kitchen, can they keep their relationship strictly professional? Oh my goodness! I knew from the prologue that I was going to love reading Bachelor's Special. Author Christine Warner weaves a captivating steamy romantic tale filled with electricity, sexual tension, passionate romance, wit and humor. I loved following Jill and Chet as their relationship developed from wary strangers who fight the attraction between them, to friends and finally lovers. The attraction between them is intense, it leaps off the pages with playful flirting and sexy banter, mixed with humorous dialogues and touching interactions. It's easy to become enthralled with this storyline: a cooking themed story, a commitment-phobe guy with trust issues, a sassy independent woman, a live-in business arrangement, a scheming ex-fiancee, and an unexpected twist ... what more could you ask for? Bachelor's Special is an entertaining romantic tale with plenty of humor and fun, mixed with mouth-watering food and sizzling passion!
Chet and Jill meet at his grandmother's birthday celebrating. Jill is an amazing Chef and Chet has to meet her. Because of the attraction she makes a bad call that ends up with an upside down cake and a kiss to remember for years. Its amazing how 1 decision can change the course of your life and Jill gets the brunt of it. They meet again on a blind date and a deal is made. Can they contain there attraction, Can he move on from a crazy ex? Christine Warner does such a good job with this book. I like that she created a female character that had her own style. Through out the book we are given alternating perspectives which I like because you get to see where each character is at in the process. When a deal is made there are always 2 different sides and I like that we get to see both in this case. I look forward to more from this author. I received an ARC for an honest review.
I'm a fan of Christine Warner's books, and this one was no exception to that rule. The chemistry between Chet and Jill was as hot as an Arizona summer, their banter nicely seasoned the pages and the happily ever after the cherry on top of the sundae. Here are the book details: Jill goes from living her dream to trying to survive – with Chet as a ticket back into the pressure-cooker world of food. The only problem with the scenario is that Chet is the very man who put her in the trying-to-survive position. It all started with a kiss which caused Jill to lose her job and her reputation. But, Chet offers her a way out – she works for him for two months and he'll co-sign a loan for her new business. Chet and Jill's relationship goes from wary to friends to lovers to happily ever after so smoothly that you can't stop turning the pages. Ms. Warner does a great job with these characters and I can't wait to read another book by her.
I was pleasantly surprised to find a funny, snarky, and romantic story within this book. Jill is a chef, and on the night of the birthday party for a very elderly woman two things happen. One she kisses the sexiest man she has ever laid lips on. And two, she drops the cake all over the floor. Both of these events catapult her into what is one of the worst years of her adult life. One year later she finds herself on a blind date with the very same man. As it turns out, he has a name, and it’s Chet Castle. Jill was awesome. She is this totally vintage chick who can cook anything. And even more than that, she just has flair. I really liked being along with her for this story of hers. There were a few times I just wanted to tell her to stop worrying so much and just go with the flow, but hey, if she didn’t, she wouldn’t be Jill. But generally she was this really awesome woman who I know I would like to be friends with, if I was in this book. As for Chet, he was back and forth. There were times where he was playful and loving, and then at others he seemed like a stereotypical playboy jerk. But he was described as, “A man with eyes of melted dark chocolate.” And I know that surely would have won me over every time had I been the one in front of him. He jokes about being psychic, but he has such wonderful intuition about people it is only serving to make him that much more attractive to me. So on this date, things blow up to smithereens as one would expect. But Chet, not used to not getting what he wants, devises a plan that will ensure that Jill is near him for quite some time. Hello “Live In Chef”. The plan is devious and genius, I love it. And Jill goes for it without much provocation, so that totally made me happy. When it comes to romance, I love a seemingly unlikely pair. I love when life throws them in the path of each other. So when Chet, with all of his searing kisses, proposed that deal to Jill, my inner hopeless romantic did some cartwheels. Their time living together in the house was a rollercoaster. At times it was very heated and sexual, and at others it was full of friendship or innocent flirtation. But then there were times it was downright uncomfortable and I’d wished one of them would leave or scream, because something needed to happen. This story takes its ups and downs, and there are a few dramatic events. I think if you like contemporary romance, this would be a good fit for you. It’s also what you might call a “foodie” romance, because her chef skills and food play quite the role in the story too. All in all, I would have to say I quite enjoyed myself with this story. It made me smile time and again, and I can’t ask for more than that!
Bachelor's Special is a great summertime read. The heroine is Chef Jill Adgate an aspiring, unemployed Chef. Unfortunately, she is out of a job, has no money and about to be evicted. She is trying to start her own catering business but cannot get a loan. Her main problem is wealthy businessman, Chet Castle and the kiss they shared that caused her to lose her job and her reputation. She now has been set up on a blind date with Chet and he has no idea who she is. However the chemistry is still there and Chet realizes who she is. Chet convinces Jill to move in with him for two months and become his personal chef and business caterer. After the two months he will co-sign a loan for her catering business. It is an opportunity that Jill cannot pass up. He doesn't trust women because of a past girlfriend who was only after his money. Chet has only one thing on his mind and that is to bed his new chef but Jill has other ideas. She is interested in love everlasting and he is looking for no strings attachments. However they take a fun journey that starts as friends but then moves on to lovers. It is well written and fun to watch this couple go through the path to happiness. Rating:4 Reviewed by: Donna McClaugherty,Review courtesy of My Book Addiction and More
I received an ARC copy in exchange for an honest review. A fun summer read, I would suggest to friends. I love Jill, she is strong willed and determined to attain her life's goals and to do it on her own. And then there's Chet...sigh... Chet. Sexy, wealthy, playboy, guarded.... Chet. These two come to meet and so starts the downward spiral of luck for Jill. It's an intense but brief encounter. Life happens, things get in the way, and it's about a year before they run into each other again on a "blind date". His brother, her best friend set them up, they get off to a wobbly start on the date and wind up going in a completely different direction with their "relationship". It's a lot of fun to watch these two grow, let down walls, and figure things out. Now, if they can just get around obstacles that are thrown at them along the way. Meddling well meaning family, big mouth best friends, jealous exes, and life events that aren't so uncommon to name a few. Will they be able to get over their own personal issues to have what they both want? Will they figure out what they truly want before it's too late? Buy it, read it, you'll enjoy finding out.
First thoughts after...... So sweet but I would love more to the story! How distracted did I get??? Bachelor's Special is a sweet romance perfect for your beach reading! Jill has my dream job! I would love to be a chef one day! (that and work at Disney World's Haunted Mansion but that's besides the point.) And Chet....bless Chet's heart. You'll want to jerk a knot in the hottie mctottie's noggin but he's so worth hanging on to! ;) Make sure you grab a copy of Bachelor's Special for your summer reading list!
The combination of culinary art and romance creates Bachelor's Special by Christine Warner. A tantalizing prologue draws the reader into this entertaining romance with characters that are likeable, fun and real. This is a cute and sexy read that kept me engaged from beginning to end. Spunky and focused Jill Adgate dreams of being a chef. She has done everything right and her dream is becoming more of a reality with each passing day, until the she nervously smashes a birthday cake into a gorgeous male client, sobs, and shares a passionate kiss with the aforementioned client, Chet Castle. Needless to say, she is fired and her reputation is destroyed. Jill's future, both personally and professionally, is in limbo. Chet Castle is good-looking, wealthy and honest. As a successful businessman, he goes out of his way to help others both financially and personally. His non-existent love-life is a thorn in his families' side. They desperately want him to fall in love and settle down. Due to a prior relationship, Chet has major trust issues and has sworn himself to a life of good times without any commitment. Jill and Chet meet again on a blind date a year after their wanton kiss. With knowing only her name, Chet has Jill investigated prior to the date and believes she is after his money. Jill just hopes he doesn't recognize her, since she was covered in head to toe chef gear at the time of the cake smashing. Luckily, they get to know each other and Chet ends up offering Jill a job as his personal chef and caterer. Chet's initial goal is to get Jill into the sack, and then help her get her catering business off the ground. However, living together and spending time with each other leads to a steamy rendezvous in the pool. From that point on, they are hooked. Knowing that mixing business and pleasure is not a good idea, they are constantly fighting their true feelings and attempting to remain in the friend zone, which is not working. Once they both let their guards down and communicate with each other, the future is theirs for the taking.
4.5 Stars - Delectable dish of hot sexual tension, sizzling chemistry & smoldering romance The heat turns up and the fire flares at the very beginning of the story. It brings to mind the adage, “If you can’t take the heat, get out of the kitchen.” Christine Warner mixes a delectable dish of hot sexual tension, sizzling chemistry, and smoldering romance, all wrapped up in a tantalizing love story. Jill Adgate is a woman determined to be a success at her job and in her love life. But her dream to become an executive chef gets thwarted when she’s caught in a very passionate kiss with a customer, while on the job as a sous chef. When she’s unable to secure employment in her chosen field due to a ruined reputation, she accepts a job as a live-in chef to the very same customer she was caught kissing. A man she’s had a hard time forgetting. Chet Castle is rich, handsome, and only interested in no-strings-attached sex. After being caught in a steamy kiss with a sous chef at his grandmother’s party, he’s never been able to forget the woman or the intense kiss they shared. When a chance encounter, set up by his brother’s fiancé, puts him in direct contact with that same woman, he finagles a deal that he hopes will get her into his bed. Little did he count on forging a friendship with her or finding the lines blurring between lust and love. Bachelor’s Special is a delightful read, with witty dialogue, a story line that flows, and scorching romance. It’s a book that will have the reader turning the pages rapidly as they follow Jill and Chet on their rocky road to happiness. An entertaining and enjoyable read that is sure to please. I received a copy of this book from Entangled Publishing in exchange for my honest review. Janna Shay Author of Fair Play
Enjoyed this book :) Fun light reading great for summer. Interesting characters & a story line that pulls you in. Love Christine Warner's books
Find this review and more at Lusty Penguin Reviews! Cooking and romance make the perfect dish in Christine Warner’s Bachelor’s Special. A captivating opening scene draws the reader into this delightful romance with engaging characters. Jill Adgate’s dreams of being an executive chef are dashed after she gets caught kissing a client, Chet Castle, and is fired. A year later, a blind date reunites Jill and Chet. Chet hasn’t stopped thinking about her, and during their date, he offers her a position as a personal chef and caterer for the summer. With Jill’s finances in shambles, she accepts Chet’s offer and wonders if she can survive the summer because she hasn’t stopped thinking about him either. Jill is an entertaining character because of her passion for food and her personal style of dressing in vintage ’50s clothing. Chet has a secret agenda, though, seduce the cook. When Jill finally explains what happened to her career after their kiss, Chet realizes his plans to bed Jill makes him worse than the other chefs that have taken advantage of her. Chet decides to change course and determines that they will become friends instead. Chet’s change of heart toward his plans made me fall in love with him. Having Jill and Chet watch movies together and share meals allows these characters the opportunity to become friends. Their witty banter provides many laugh-out-loud moments. Nevertheless, Jill and Chet are always fighting the sexual chemistry that sizzles between them. When the finally admit that they want each other, their intimate scene is scorching hot. But, when Chet thinks that Jill has duped him, he says the most hurtful thing and ends their relationship. However, the length Chet goes to in order to prove his love and to get Jill back is heartwarming. Bachelor’s Special is a fast-paced, sweet, and memorable romance that is the perfect summer beach read. I received an eBook copy from the publisher for the purpose of an honest review. I was not compensated for this review, and all conclusions are my own responsibility.
This book had everything that makes up a great romance read. It was fun and light at times, with many sexy, sensual kisses. Throw in a bit of conflict, a few broken souls who constantly disregard their true feelings and it’s a match made in heaven. The characters are all really great…okay maybe not all…Gina was a real skank. I was immediately thrown into Jill’s world of culinary pleasure. Her passion for cooking was clearly visible but when the dashing Chet Castle entered her kitchen it all went up in smoke, or more accurately, ended up all over Chet and the floor. Her job wasn’t the only thing she lost that night with his tantalizing kiss, and from then on she struggled to find her way in the world. I enjoyed Jill’s determination. Even with everything she’d had to go through, her mind was set on opening her own business and she would do just about anything to make her new dream a reality. Chet’s a broken man. A bit of a womanizer, he closely guarded his heart, as well as his bank account. It was exciting to watch Chet and Jill navigate their agreement. Their constant play at cat and mouse kept the story flowing. Although Chet’s intentions weren’t entirely admirable, I believe neither were Jill’s, she just refused to admit it. She’d agreed to become Chet’s personal chef for financial reasons but her body and mind often betrayed her desire. I was a little surprised that she initiated things in the pool, and by the way she fled afterwards, it seemed that so was she. It was great that Jill and Chet were adult enough to continue their friendship regardless of their actions, but it did add a new level of sexual awareness to their game. Things kind of simmered down until Gina poked her nose into things and stirred up a storm of deceit and lies. I was just happy that Chet wasn’t foolish enough to fall for her tricks. Even though his fears made him say nasty, hurtful things to Jill, I loved that he was willing to stand by her no matter what. Jill had her own fears, and I can understand why she wasn’t prepared to accept less than she deserved; another testament to her strong character. This book was a fun, quick read. I didn't necessarily feel as emotionally connected to the characters as I’d normally like, and the sexual tension didn't ooze from the pages, but that didn't keep me from enjoying it. Too often, books in this genre tend to rely on the high level of sexiness to make them appealing, but this story was more a tale of two people finding themselves while fixing each other.
My first CW book but not my last. This was a quick fun read. Both characters are believable and likable. However towards the end I found the female Jill insecurities rather annoying and unfounded. Luckily they showed up at the end of the book and quickly went away. Other then that well worth the 2.99! for a full length novel!
This book was an attention getter from page one with a blind date gone wrong, but with a second chance, and don't we just love second chances! The attraction and sizzle between Jill and Chet leaps off the page and keeps you turning those pages to see what happens next. Humor, heat, witty and engaging dialogue...this little book has it all. Very well done!
something good is cooking in the kitchen
if you truly believe that love comes to those who want it and believe in it, this is the book for you.
If you are after a well-written romantic read that is filled with sexual tension, wit and humour, has wonderful characters and a great storyline, then this ticks all the boxes. It was a pleasure to read. Whilst there wasn't a vast amount of steamy content, when it did happen it was worth it. I absolutely loved Jill and Chet. They were both strong individuals with characters traits that weren't unrealistic. Jill, a chef, is honest, open, witty and determined. Her life goals are to run a successful business, marry and have children. Only it's not's going to plan. Chet, a wealthy businessman is down to earth, very sexy, intelligent, funny and a commitment-phobe with trust issues. A kiss between strangers, a blind-date and a proposition later, Jill has agreed to be Chet's live-in chef. 8 weeks for her to kick-start her business, 8 weeks for him to get her out of his system. What is it they say? If you can't stand the heat get out of the kitchen...? With sexy and playful banter, laugh-out loud humour and touching moments along with those that tugged on the heartstrings, it was a book that I struggled to put down. Plus there was a twist to the story that I didn't exactly see coming. The only thing that was missing for me was an epilogue; I just feel it ended a little suddenly, as such wonderful characters they deserved one and it would have finished their story off perfectly, but nevertheless, this most definitely a book that I wouldn't hesitate to recommend and is one that I will read again. (One last thing. The cover. They say you should never judge a book by it, but judging by the attention my husband gave it after spotting it and his subsequent questions, I believe this cover does the book justice). I received this book as an ARC from the publisher for an honest and unbiased opinion.
A great read to get you in that romantic mood, maybe where there's a will there's a way and that it somehow, maybe proves, how love can conquer all. With a hunk like Chet any woman would be willing to take the risk... An excellent and highly recommended read...
Bachelor's Special is the perfect summer read. Chef Jill Adgate is out of work, out of money and out of patience. Things keep going from bad to worse. The cause of all her problems is Chet Castle and the passionate kiss they shared. Their encounter caused her to lose her job and her reputation. Now they meet again and their intense attraction is still there. Chet feels responsible and he wants to keep her close. She makes him feel alive. He offers her a position as his live-in chef. Out of options Jill says yes. All their good intentions to not become involved go by the wayside. Chet wants no string and no commitment but Jill wants a forever love. Add in Chet's scheming ex-girlfriend and you have a battle between forever love and sexual desire. Will their be a HEA? You'll enjoy finding out. Christine Warner's writing captivates with likeable characters, amusing dialogue and romantic encounters that are very hot. Don't miss this book. I received a copy from the publisher for an honest review.
If you can stand the heat…read Bachelor’s Special! It is delightful, combining a few of my favourite things: delicious food, gorgeous men (or man), an original heroine and okay, a little bit of how’s your father! As ever, Ms Warner’s writing is such a breath of fresh air. I almost sigh in pleasure when I settle down to read one of her books, and Bachelor’s Special was no different. Jill is a not-out-of-the-box heroine, her quirky 50’s style of dressing made me rethink my own wardrobe and her ability to spar with the best of them made me wish for brains. Right from the word go, Jill isn’t letting rich, handsome, successful Chet intimidate her. Nor his imposing mansion or his obvious flair in the boardroom. She may be struggling to establish her catering business, and he has oodles of the readies but still, she isn’t kowtowing to him. You find yourself rooting for her, laughing at her antics and silently applauding her guts. Chet Castle is just divine. He’s hot, has a great work ethic, could be deemed an inventor and he’s single. A bit bruised and battered from past relationships, but I’d certainly be queuing up to make him feel better…any day. The attraction between the two of them leaps off the page and their flirting is done to perfection. Jill won’t sleep with her boss…will she? Again, Ms Warner’s ability to write sensual scenes effortlessly has you glued to the pages, wondering what’s going to happen—and how it’s all going to play out. Their dialogue is engaging and witty, and I constantly found a smile on my face when reading Bachelor’s Special. I don’t want to give anything away, suffice it to say that Ms Warner has written a winner. I look forward to the next time I pick up a previously un-read book of hers.