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Book Review, Comedy, Contemporary, Enemies to Lovers, Entangled Publishing, Fake relationship, NetGalley, Romance, Second Chance, Series, Small Town Romance

The Sweetheart Deal (Blossom Glen #1) by Miranda Liasson


Pastry chef Tessa Montgomery knows what everyone in the teeny town of Blossom Glen says about her. Spinster. Ice Queen. Such a shame. It’s enough to make a woman bake her troubles away, dreaming of Parisian delicacies while she makes bread at her mother’s struggling boulangerie. That is until Tessa’s mortal enemy—deliciously handsome (if arrogant) chef Leo Castorini, who owns the restaurant next door—proposes a business plan…to get married.

Leo knows that the Castorinis and the Montgomerys hate each other, but a marriage might just force these stubborn families to work together and blend their businesses for success. The deal is simple: Tessa and Leo marry, live together for six months, and then go their separate ways. Easy peasy.

It’s a sweetheart deal where everyone gets what they want—until feelings between the faux newlyweds start seriously complicating the mix. Have they discovered the perfect recipe for success…or is disaster on the way?


It’s a business deal that’s gone personal. My first Miranda Liasson book is a delightful read. Her characters are witty and endearing and her setting is homey and warm. 

Tessa Montgomery is a pastry chef who sacrificed her dreams after high school to take care of her family after losing her father and helping run the family business. Now the business is floundering and her fiance, Sam, dumped her for another woman. Stuck in a small town. Labeled as a spinster. It’s enough to break anyone. Until the sexy hot “Leo the Legend” Castorini walks into her bakery and makes her an offer she can’t refuse.

Leo Castorini is back from New York to help his father’s restaurant succeed.  All the restaurant needs is some new changes to go with the times, but Leo’s dad isn’t having it. His dad believes Leo needs to marry and settle down to boost their sales and then he would listen to his new ideas. So Leo offers a deal with the girl who broke his heart in high school. To marry and present a united front to their families and pitch an idea to save both of their families’ businesses. But how do you convince two families who have been feuding for decades?

Yes, the idea is ridiculous to marry, move in together, and lie to your families, but it’s a love story that will appeal to your heart. After all, desperation is a powerful motive and people have done much worse. I really like Leo’s enthusiasm and optimism despite his reputation as a playboy. As a man who doesn’t want to be tied down, he definitely embraces his new life with Tessa. He’s attentive and supportive when Tessa needs it most and he truly cares about her well-being. Tessa is hilarious with her fantastic sense of humor and teasing jabs which Leo takes in stride. Her reveal about the scholarship Leo won in high school is heartbreaking and says a lot about her sweet and giving nature. She is very tentative about trusting Leo after Sam’s betrayal, but how can you be mad at this man’s gorgeous megawatt smile that seems to blow all the bad things out of the water.  Of course, there is a secret that puts a crack in their new romance, but with love and forgiveness and wonderful support from family and friends, it truly is a HEA.

I love Tessa and Leo’s family and friends. Though there was a feud between the elders in the families for years, Leo and Tessa did an excellent job working together as a team to make everything work out. In fact, the elders may have found some happiness as well.  

I highly recommend this sweet and funny romance with yummy French and Italian food references and lovely family and friends. Another author to add to my TBR list.

Thank you to Ms. Liasson, Entangled Publishing, and Netgalley for giving me the opportunity to read this book with no expectation of a positive review.


The Sweetheart Deal

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I write about the important relationships in women’s lives as well as the self-discovery and wisdom gained along the way. Along with the romance, my books deal a lot with the heroine’s journey to find her true path in life, and family and friendships too. Entertainment Weekly gave me great praise when they said I “deal with so much of what makes life hard . . . without ever losing the warmth and heart that characterize her writing.”

Also, I believe we can handle whatever life throws at us just a little better with a laugh.

I’m a proud native of Northeast Ohio. My husband and I live in a neighborhood of old homes that serve as inspiration for my books. I’m very proud of my three young adult children. And though every day I think about getting a dog (after my sweet yellow lab passed a few years ago), I fear a writer’s life may bore the poor animal to tears. But I’m thinking hard about it!

When I’m not writing or enjoying books myself, I can be found biking along the old Ohio and Erie Canal Towpath trails in the beautiful Ohio MetroParks.

Follow Ms. Liasson on her website, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Bookbub, and newsletter.

Entangled Publishing

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