Sunday, August 16, 2009

Sophie Renwick - Hot in Here

She wasn’t his dish – until someone turned up the heat.”

“Celebrity chef and infamous ladies’ man Bryce Ryder can’t believe the thoughts he’s having about his old friend Jenna McCabe. She’s always been the shy girl next door, but when having some bad publicity threatens everything he’s built, Jenna gets down to business – and shows a side of herself that is take-charge and totally irresistible.

Soon things are heating up in and around the kitchen – and all of Jenna’s secret fantasies about Bryce start coming true. But will she be the one to tame his heart, or is the sexy chef just indulging another one of his cravings?”

I first heard of Sophie Renwick through the grapevine. Book blog land was and still is buzzing about her new upcoming Annwyn series. After a few clicks of my mouse I ended up at her website and I knew this new series would be on top of my wish & buy list. Of course the hot pictures and profiles of the men helped too. Then I discovered that she just released a contemporary romance story called Hot in Here, a new series about the delicious Ryder brothers. The excerpt of Hot in Here reminded me a bit of Bella Andre’s “Red Hot Reunion” and I liked that one very much. Hot in Here immediately grabbed my attention and I did not look up from my copy till I had finished the story. What a fun, easy and heartwarming read!

Of course you can’t go wrong when the ingredients of this spicy story are a drop-dead gorgeous alpha male, a “normal” plain Jane, hot sex and great food. Sometimes it is just a relief to read an uncomplicated love story, no mysteries or murders to be solved, just two people falling in love and dealing with their emotions. Sophie Renwick keeps the storyline straightforward, simple but believable. As a reader you will feel the connection with Bryce and Jenna right away for they are both hardworking, normal people.

Jenna McCabe is a vibrant, young woman with a healthy appetite and a healthy size. She owns her own marketing business. She has been in love with Bryce Ryder for ten years and now has to try and save her friend’s reputation. But she is tired that he does not see her any other way than as his friend so she has changed her strategy with him. She now plays the role of a playgirl who just wants to have some fun, Bryce does take notice and soon she is in way over her head. Jenna is honest and loyal and playing this game is totally out of character for her and dangerous too for it involves her heart.

Bryce Ryder is rich, handsome and a famous sexy cook who has millions of housewives drooling over him. He is also emotional damaged; his wife married him for the money and took off with half of his assets. The only place he ever called home was the farmhouse of Jenna McCabe’s family. Because of a stupid remark he made his business and reputation is in trouble so he turns to Jenna for help. Jenna is Jenna but there is something different about her, the whole new confidence thing is getting to him. He finds her irresistible and realizes that she is the solution to his problem, but he falls hard and fast for her.

When Jenna finds out he used her to solve his problems she is hurt. Now Bryce has to come up with his best recipe ever to save their relationship and show her that he really means it and wants to build a future with her. Jenna’s and Bryce encounters are witty and funny. Jenna can’t believe it is finally happening and Bryce can’t believe he has never noticed her before like this. They both are dealing with unfamiliar feelings and Bryce actually has to work hard to conquer Jenna. Not something his big ego is used to, he is forced to take a long, good look at himself and realizes that he has been in love with Jenna for ten years. Jenna was always there he just realizes what others already knew for ten years: that they belong together.

Jenna’s family adds warmth to this story; they love each other unconditionally and help each other out. Bryce’s family is coldhearted; he and his brother Trey do not have warm feelings for their parents. Sophie Renwick is hinting throughout the story that some chemistry is going on between Trey and Jenna’s sister Sarah but of course they certainly do not see it that way. I guess we will just have to wait for Trey’s story to find out their history.

Of course as in every romance Bryce and Jenna have to overcome all kinds of roadblocks. Trust, emotional betrayal and honesty are hot items in their relationship. Also Jenna’s insecurity and other family stuff come floating up to the surface and cause trouble. Sophie Renwick has created characters that are easy to love, her writing is fluent and she knows how to visualize hot and steamy sex scenes with words. I love it that her characters are normal, down-to-earth people and grow into better and more whole persons towards the end of the story.

Hot in Here has whetted my appetite for more of Sophie Renwick’s writing; it is a fun, sexy and warm read!


“He tried to remember that this was Jenna McCabe, high school friend. Jenna was not a sex kitten behind a red wrap blouse. Jenna was safe, and he liked temptation. Jenna was … Shit, he thought, watching her run her tongue along the sword in slow, erotic flicks. Jenna was hot as hell and he was getting singed.”

4 stars


  1. Love the review! Sounds like a great read!

  2. That's sounds like a really great book. I have to read this. Great review!

  3. Thanks ladies, it really is an easy and fun read, the only complaint I have is that the book is too short, it only has 277 pages.

  4. Great review! I'll have to see about getting this!