Reader’s Edyn

I always felt like I could do something more than just read. Finally, I have found both a creative outlet and a chance to do something meaningful with my reading. This blog was created in appreciation of and tribute to all of the authors who have brought me joy through their books. These reviews are my way of giving back to authors and providing recognition for the hard work that each one completes every day!

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Review: LOVE AND LATTES by Heather Thurmeier

       Title: Love and Lattes
                     (A Meadow Ridge Romance)

       Author: Heather Thurmeier

       Release Date: December 15, 2011

       Publisher: Silver Publishing

       Category: Contemporary Romance

       Type: Paperback



Chase has given up hope of ever finding a woman who wants something more than just his family name. Julia is funny, incredibly sexy, and finally, after two years of playing the field, Chase gets a chance to date a girl who’s interested in him, not his status.

Julia can’t forget the night of passion she spent with Chase after dancing at the club. When she runs into him on her first day at a new job, she’s thrilled to see him again—until she learns he’s her new boss.

Julia doesn’t know what to think when she’s threatened to stay away from Chase and then overhears gossips painting him as a player and Julia as his new toy. Should Julia heed the threats and gossip or is a chance to fall in love worth the risk?


Elbowing her way through the crowd, Julia Walker finally reached the bar and attempted to flag down a bartender. She wiggled her fingers at the one nearest her as he walked by. Of course, he stopped at a woman further down and leaned across the bar to hear her order. As far as she could see, other people seemed to be trying the same tactic as her own. If the drinks lining the edge of the bar were any indication, all of them had apparently been more successful than she had.

Sighing, Julia propped her head in her hand and resigned herself to the fact she wasn’t likely to get a drink anytime soon. In a normal setting, people looked right through her. Why had she thought the bar would be any different?

Why is coming to the club fun?

Maybe if she was tall and blonde, with her breasts bursting out of her top like so many of the other women she saw around the bar, she’d stand a chance of being noticed. But, with her straight black hair falling slightly above her shoulders and a dress only providing a hint of what hid underneath, she simply couldn’t compete.

She surveyed the dance floor from her position at the bar but couldn’t make out her friend anywhere in the sea of people. Julia had never been to Oasis before, even though there were only three clubs in the neighborhood. Her friend and roommate Tali had sworn she’d stay by her side so Julia wouldn’t end up standing alone and bored the entire night. But where’s Tali now? They’d gotten separated almost as soon as they’d entered the bar, with men naturally flocking to Tali’s side, hoping for her attention.

The club was inside the gates of Meadow Ridge, so all the customers were either born and raised in the Meadow—which meant they were stinking rich—or they were students from the local university like she was—which meant they were dirt poor and barely scrimping by on meager student loans. Tali fell easily into the first group and Julia did not. Somehow, they’d remained friends regardless of the difference in their bank account balances.

Julia turned away from the dance floor and back to the bar. She needed a drink soon. She was already dehydrated from the hot, sweaty club and hadn’t even danced yet. Sending her most award-winning smile directly at the bartender, she waved her hand again. He looked right past her to the girl in the see-through dress, which may as well have been non-existent for all the coverage the flimsy material provided.

A man in a dark blue button-up shirt suddenly blocked her view. “Hey,” he esaid, smiling at her with perfect Hollywood teeth, bending down until his mouth brushed her earlobe. His warm breath caressed her delicate skin. “You look like you could use a drink. Can I get you one?”

You could get me more than a drink, I’m sure.

He must have been about six feet tall, with the most gorgeous sandy-brown hair. His features were sharp and defined with a strong jaw and chiseled cheekbones. Even though she could tell he was only a couple of years older than she was, he looked far too distinguished to be mingling in a club full of students and twenty-something singles. The warmth of his breath at her neck sent a tingle along her flesh.

“You can try.” She finally found her voice enough to answer him. “I haven’t had much luck yet.”

“What’ll you have?”

“A Cosmo.”

He leaned across the bar and instantly a bartender wandered over to take his order.

How’d he do that?

She couldn’t hear his words over the sounds of music pounding through the club, but moments later a frosty martini glass filled with bright pink liquid was at her lips. The tart cranberry instantly quenched her thirst as the heat of the liquor quieted the butterflies in her stomach.

“Thanks,” she shouted, hoping he could hear her over the noise. She reached into the small clutch she’d brought filled with essentials and pulled out a couple of neatly folded bills. Before she could offer them to him, he put his hand on hers, shaking his head.

She should have insisted on paying. She wanted to pay. But the moment his hand touched hers, every thought she’d ever had vanished. The only thing she could focus on was the heat of his touch. His hand lingered on hers and she would swear she could feel actual sparks firing against her skin. Does that really happen to people?

She’d read plenty of romance novels that talked about the chemistry—the spark between two people—but she’d always thought an actual spark sounded a bit farfetched. Stuff like that didn’t happen in real life, did it?

Her eyes sought his, finding the most interesting kaleidoscope of colors she’d ever seen. Flecks of blue, brown, and green intermingled to create eyes she wanted to stare at forever. “The next one’s on me.”

“There’ll be another?” He gave her a teasing grin.

Oh, damn. She began to sweat and wondered if her assumption about another drink had been completely wrong. When he’d bought her this drink, he was probably just trying to be nice to the poor, thirsty girl at the bar. He most likely had a girlfriend somewhere in the club waiting for him right now and wondering where he was.

“No, I didn’t mean that. I just wanted to repay you for this drink since you were so nice to buy me one. That’s all. I’m sure you have someone else to buy you the next drink, so you won’t need me too. Of course it’s not like you need anyone to buy you a drink, I’m sure you can afford to buy your own drinks—” She shook her head and sighed under her breath. Damn it. At the ripe old age of twenty-two, she still couldn’t speak to men without getting flustered.

Dialogue Highlight:

“Listen, about the other night.” He started, but wasn’t sure where to go from there. “I really had a good time with you.”

She grinned and laughed, blushing a deep red. “I could tell.”

He laughed too. “No, that’s not what I meant—well, I guess I mean that, too—but I actually just meant I liked talking to you, dancing, everything. It—it was nice.”

“I had a good time too, in all meanings.”

“I really wish we could go out again sometime. I had already been planning where I’d take you once I finally got a hold of you.”

“Oh yeah? Where?”

“There’s this little Spanish place called Luna that serves the best tapas.” He shrugged. “Doesn’t matter now, I guess.”

The smile slid off both of their faces as the weight of his last statement hung in the air between them. “Too bad. I like tapas.”

He nodded, his disappointment almost breaking through his boss exterior. “Something else we have in common.”

“I’m sorry.” Julia spoke quietly and wrapped her arms around the book she still held, pulling it protectively against her chest. “It’s just, I really need this job. I wish I didn’t, but I do.”

Chase shook his head. He didn’t want her to feel pressured into quitting just because he wanted to go on a real date with her. “No, of course you do. I shouldn’t have said anything. I didn’t mean anything by it. Just thinking out loud I guess.” He wouldn’t make that mistake again. “I’ll let you get back to work. Let me know if you need anything.” He turned and left without glancing back. He needed to get on with life without Julia. Their situation wasn’t going to change, and the sooner he accepted reality, the better off they’d both be. He wouldn’t pressure her again. They were stuck working together and that’s all there was to it.

Chase wove his way through the rows of books and ducked into the self-help room on his way to new releases. He kicked a book lying in the middle of the aisle and bent to pick it up before flipping the book cover side up in his hands. Banging in the Backroom: Tales of Workplace Romance Gone wrong. Oh, hell. Even the merchandise was on his case.

Time to move on to the next girl, like always.


What a cute story from Heather Thurmeier. This is the first book I have read by this author and it definitely won’t be the last. LOVE AND LATTES is the first in the Meadow Ridge Romance Series. I love knowing when a book is part of a series because I then have the knowledge that I can continue with the stories I truly enjoy. You can bet the rest of the series is on my TBR list. I have been sitting on this book for quite a while. Now that I have read it, I wish I would have placed it higher up on the list. I was a bit annoyed with myself to realize that I had such a good story just sitting around. But hey, it is now read and I get the chance to tell everyone my thoughts about it.

Poor Chase. He is loaded. He has pretty much anything he could every want at his beck and call; even women. Problem is that everyone knows who he is. Consequently, that true love match he has been searching for continually eludes him. Chase wants what everyone longs for; true love – love for him and not his wealth or status in society. So when he meets a woman that intrigues him and doesn’t seem to have any idea who he is, he is smitten. One spectacular night with Julia and he knows he has to have more of her. She just might be what he has been searching for, but he is unexpectedly blindsided with a wrench that will likely call a screeching halt to the budding relationship. But a fleeting taste is not enough and he finds himself craving the possibilities of a future with her.

Julia is new in town. She now lives in an upper crust area and quickly learns how snooty everyone around her is. When she hits a club with her friend, she becomes acquainted with Chase. He seems real and they hit it off immediately. Of course the fact that he is beyond hot has nothing to do with her decision to spend time with him. Never one to dabble in illicit relationships, she throws caution to the wind and takes a chance, taking Chase home with her. She would like to see more of him, but when she shows up to begin her brand new job the following day, she is horrified to discover that Chase is her boss. Her chance at love is well and truly squashed. She toys with the idea of quitting, but she needs the job for the time being.

Of course there is quite a bit more to this story than my summation, but I wouldn’t want to tell you too much of the plot. Julia and Chase end up struggling with their close proximity to each other in the store and their knowledge that working together and dating is out of reach. Chase eventually sets out to change Julia’s mind. But there is a bit of conflict along the way given Chase’s status and others attempting to lay claim on him that might end his chances with Julia altogether.

I enjoyed my time spent getting to know Chase and Julia. I felt like Chase had some real concerns about finding the love of his life, as I am sure would be applicable given his wealth. Julia also struggles with tangible issues such as tasting the forbidden that is Chase and not really knowing what to do about it, worrying about making rent, concentrating on her education, and other distressing concerns that would be valid to her character. Both were cute in their playful banter in the club and workplace. And their upset at the realization that being together seems to be impossible was heartfelt. Adding turmoil to the mix is Rebecca’s character. She comes off as possessive of Chase and ultimately affects several of his possible relationships both in business and personally. Of course she is threatened by Julia’s presence so the claws come out. And Rebecca is not the only one who claims to have a stake in Chase. He ends up with the reputation of a player and Julia does not deal with that knowledge very well. A fun secondary character that adds a bit of playfulness and insight to the story is Tali; a crucial character toward the end of the story.

For the most part, Chase and Julia remain true to character throughout the book’s entirety. But there were a couple of things that I didn’t like much. In a couple of cases, these two intelligent main characters react rather stupidly, which seemed out of character for both of them. Chase seems like the kind of man that would know the ins and outs of everything that he deals with; most especially his business. When he ends up oblivious to Rebecca’s incessant antics in his store, I found that hard to swallow. This component is not practical for a wealthy man in business. Also deviated from character was Julia’s blind belief of several bits of gossip she hears about Chase. She is attracted to many things about him, including his intellect. She is also quite intelligent, putting herself through college and living a responsible life, so for her to give credit to hearsay didn’t seem palpable.

Other than these two small components in the grand scheme of the characters, I was glad that I had the opportunity to read this story. More recently, I have come across romance that has seemed refreshing to me from an erotic perspective. Sometimes I don’t want the excessive sexual encounters that seem to saturate the genre of late. I find it a relief to be able to enjoy a romantic read without over-stimulating my mind with unwarranted eroticism. Don’t get me wrong. I enjoy erotic reads as well, but also enjoy the tamer versions ever-so-often. Those that like a little bit of spice to their romance without causing a serious blush – you know the kind, the one that you can’t explain when reading in public as you scheme to keep the contents of your eReader secret – then I highly recommend this book. The characters are enjoyable and their chemistry is fun to watch blossom. Ms. Thurmeir does a great job at bringing this entertaining series to life. I look forward to the continuing stories and hope to be able to experience her work again soon.

 (eBook copy provided by author; giveaway won on Carrie Ann Ryan’s blog.)

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