Hospitality consultant Andrea Sullivan has one last chance to snag a high-profile
client or she’ll have to kiss her dreams of promotion good-bye. When she’s sent to meet Scottish celebrity chef James MacDonald on the Isle of Skye, she just wants to finish her work as efficiently as possible. Yet her client is not the opportunistic womanizer he portrays himself to be, and her attraction to him soon dredges up memories she’d rather leave buried. For James, renovating the family hotel is a fulfillment of his late father’s dreams. When his hired consultant turns out to be beautiful, intelligent, and completely unimpressed by his public persona, he makes it his mission to win her over. He just never expects to fall under her spell.
Soon, both Andrea and James must face the reality that God may have a far different purpose for their lives—and that five days in Skye will forever change their outlook on life and love.
Carla Laureano does an excellent job of transporting her reader to Scotland. Viewing the landscape through her characters, James and Andrea, I found myself thinking. “When can I pack my bags and go to Skye?” Her characters are believable and the past pain they have experienced deeply moving. The love story is at times amusing, sweet, and emotionally tender. Some have stated that the use of alcohol was too much in the story, but the main character is a modern day celebrity chef, and if he had not used or served alcohol with his meals it would not have been believable. It is worth noting that no-one was drunk or abusive due to alcohol in the book. Personally I thought it was tastefully handled, and I am not one to condone the use of alcohol. I did think the end of the story was a bit abrupt and perhaps should have included an epilogue of how James and Andrea worked out the relationship. Did Andrea return to New York? Did she start her own business? Was she willing to move to London with James? Did he give up his celebrity cooking show? What happened with the hotel in Skye? The book left several threads dangling and the reader is left to assume all worked out “happily ever after.” That being said, the book was enjoyable, and I look forward to future writings from Carla Laureano.
Since writing this review, I’ve had the pleasure of reading book two,
London Tides (released June 2015) and can happily say the are additional details about Jamie and Andrea’s relationship and how it has progressed since book one, and I must add …to my satisfaction. I plan to review London Tides on Wednesday, July 8th, so take a look, let me know what you think, and more importantly support the authors reviewed Down In The Hollow. Thanks for visiting the ‘hollow’ and reading my blogs!
P.S. to my blog followers: My reviews are always my ‘honest’ opinion and I receive no monetary support nor am I under any obligation to support any author, agency, or organization. I simply like to write about the hobbies I enjoy – reading, cooking, gardening, the “local gems” in my Blue Ridge Mountian community, and my home which is down in a hollow. Thank you for supporting this endeavor.