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Sweet Nothings

Dreamspun Desires, Book 55
Narrated by: Simon Ferrar
Length: 5 hrs and 49 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (23 ratings)

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How steamy is it? Seductive

Publisher's Summary

Amuse Bouche: audiobook one.

Will a bitter bite from the past spoil a sweet romance? 

Tristan Love, the youngest of seven brothers, is back in his hometown. He’s left the New York food scene and an abusive relationship behind him, but he holds his love of French pastries close to his heart and is determined to put his skills to use in a bakery of his own. 

Returning to his childhood home means his meddlesome brother Simon will butt into his business, but before the bakery even opens its doors, Tristan’s delectable creations have the town’s mouths watering, and Jake, a cute mechanic, asks Tristan out. It all seems worthwhile....

That is, until the bakery burns down, Jake’s criminal past comes to light, and Tristan’s nasty ex rears his head where he is decidedly not wanted.

©2018 T. Neilson (P)2018 Dreamspinner Press

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

So very sweet

Finally a Dreamspun Desires novel that I actually enjoyed, the last few I've listened to have sadly been a bust. Sweet Nothings made up for it. It was all the sweetness that the title suggests - and then some.

Being the youngest child in a family is never easy, but being the youngest of seven boys is ridiculous. He left his hometown for New York City with big dreams; opening his own bakery, falling in love with a great guy. Sadly the guy he found was a toad in prince's clothing, and to get away from the abusive relationship Tristan runs back home, leaving his ex-fiancé Christopher behind . He spends all his money on buying a property to open up the bakery he's always dreamed of. Unfortunately his ex refuses to let him go and follows him back to Lake Balmoral, causing trouble left to right. Add in a very meddling brother and Tristan has his hands full. The only light in the horizon is Jake, the very cute mechanic that he has some crazy chemistry with.

I really loved how both Tristan and Jake were so accepting of each other. They let the other be themselves, they were allowed to start over, to grow. Tristan into someone ready to stand on own, to stand up to his abusive ex, to stand up for himself, for those he loved and start over again. Jake has a bit of a coloured past. Trying to start over and rebuild after being released from jail, but constantly having to defend his choices and past. And when Tristan’s new bakery is set on fire thigs get even more complicated. Neither of them lets the past dictate their present or future (too much). I love how they are so focused on moving forward, and finding that path together. Sure, their relationship was fast – as they tend to be in this series, but it was still sweet.

Simon Ferrar is a new narrator for me and one I will definitely keep a look out for in the future. I loved his narration of this book. The voices, the performance and feelings were just right. He took me away for the afternoon and made me smell and almost taste the deliciousness Tristan created. He kind of also made wish for my own bakery - well that is until I remembered the early mornings that would entail. But still, it was nice to dream for a while.

A copy of this book was generously provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review for Love Bytes.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Delicously cozy romance with some mild angst

Sweet Nothings is a lovely story about second chances. The blurb of this audiobook caught my attention and I was eager to try a new-to-me author and narrator. I liked both the writing style and the narrator’s flow and will look for more of their works in the future.

This book was well named because it featured a romance almost too sweet for my taste, but that practically-too-easy connection was tempered by the angst and conflict surrounding Tristan and Jake’s pasts that ended up impacting their current lives. Overall, I really liked these characters and enjoyed watching them get their happy ending. I especially loved seeing Tristan realize his dreams of getting a bakery. The author did a great job at bringing the things that were important to Tristan and Jake out to the forefront. This was especially noticeable in the way Tristan’s love for flavors and baking came through in multiple interactions or his thoughts throughout the story. Though their immediate blind trust in one another was a tad unbelievable, I ended up really liking that the couple was readily supportive of one another because it led the love story in a different direction than anticipated. I also liked the protective siblings and small town feeling that came across, enough that it left me interested in reading more within the Amuse Bouche series.

Although this wasn’t a book that grabbed my attention so fervently it didn’t let go, I liked the characters and story in Sweet Nothings and really enjoyed the bakery setting and foodie elements. The narrator for the audiobook version proved to be a good fit for the easy pace of the book, using clear diction and a smooth rhythm to make for a pleasant listen. If you’re looking for a comfortable romance with some minor, but easily resolved angst, I’d recommend this title.

*Reviewed for Alpha Book Club*

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Sweet Nothings

This book was great and not what I was expecting at all. I thought for sure this would be another sugary sweet romance and we did get some cute details thrown in, but there’s a lot more than just that with this book. I was on the edge of my seat half the time trying to figure out what would happen next and was fully invested in this interesting story.

Tristan moves back home to open a bakery after leaving a bad relationship. Once he’s back in town he meets Jake, who is an ex-con from the “wrong” side of town. Everyone seems to be against their relationship from the very start and no one wants Tristan involved with Jake in any way. But since no one really knows what happened between Tristan and his horrible ex-bf, they really are focused on disliking the wrong person. I really just wish that Tristan was more open with his family about what happened, but that did add more intrigue and suspense to this book and what happens further along in the storyline.

I liked Jake and I really liked him in a relationship with Tristan and how they were together as a couple. You could tell that Jake really cared for him from the start, to the point he would do whatever it took to keep him safe. I just would have liked a little more communication between the two. They both seemed to have a hard time talking about their pasts and I would have liked it if they’d have been able to trust each other more.

I’ve never read this author, T. Neilson, before but I do hope we get more from them. I would definitely be interested in reading and listening to stories for Tristan’s brothers as well.

Audio – The narrator, Simon Ferrar, did great with this book. His voice for Tristan was a little annoying to me personally at times, but I do think that it fit Tristan’s personality perfectly, so it did not take away from the story at all, and Jake’s voice was wonderfully deep and matched him as well. Overall I think this book was a really good choice to listen to in audio format so I'm glad I gave this one a chance.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

A sweet story with a touch of angst.

I have to admit that while I was drawn in by the cover, it was the book's blurb that really did it for me:

"Will a bitter bite from the past spoil a sweet romance?

Tristan Love, the youngest of seven brothers, is back in his hometown. He’s left the New York food scene and an abusive relationship behind him, but he holds his love of French pastries close to his heart and is determined to put his skills to use in a bakery of his own.

Returning to his childhood home means his meddlesome brother Simon will butt into his business, but before the bakery even opens its doors, Tristan’s delectable creations have the town’s mouths watering, and Jake, a cute mechanic, asks Tristan out. It all seems worthwhile….

That is, until the bakery burns down, Jake’s criminal past comes to light, and Tristan’s nasty ex rears his head where he is decidedly not wanted."

Tristan, for everything he's gone through in the past, is a relentlessly positive person who returns to his hometown of Lake Balmoral to start fresh after leaving his fiance in New York. Jake is a guy who's quietly trying to rebuild his life, making his way one day at a time. While it seems like Tristan and Jake get together pretty fast (and they do), the reader needs to keep in mind that this is a Dreamspun Desire book, which is pretty much the equivalent of a Harlequin Romance. And that's not a bad thing. The story is full of interesting and engaging secondary characters, and the narrator (Simon Ferrar) does an exceptional job of bringing them to life. His voices for Tristan and Jake are especially fitting to the characters.

I'm a big fan of the Dreamspun Desires line at Dreamspinner Press, and since 'Sweet Nothings' is billed as Book 1 in the Amuse Bouche series, I'm definitely looking forward to more stories of life in Lake Balmoral.

To sum it up, ‘Sweet Nothings’ is a story of starting over and of giving those who never had one - or who thought they never deserved one - a second chance. And that’s something.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Cat
  • Missouri
  • 08-04-18

A sweet treat with a bit of angst

Tritan is on the run from his abusive ex. He drained his savings, left the ring with a note and took off back home to where his brothers are and bought a bakery. He is excited about his new life, especially when the sexy mechanic Jake asks him out. His brother Simon has a fancy restaurant and wholesale orders a lot of bread and the coffee shop is interested in wholesale goods so he is on the way to being on his feet enough to open...until the ex-rears, his ugly head and won't take no for an answer.
Jake has a past. He went to prison for a crime he didn't commit to protect someone else. He has served his time but life isn't easy for an ex-con. His sister hires him in her auto shop but soon Jake finds things are not going as well as he though and the cute little Baker is in trouble.
I loved this story. it is so sweet and I love a good bad boy even if Jake really isn't that bad. There's a lot going on, there are so many great characters and I am hoping for a story from all the brothers.
I think the story was good on its own, but toss in the narration by Simon Ferrar and it was even better. Simon has good pacing, made it easy to follow each man ( and there are many) and adds great emotion where needed.
I can't wait for more in this series!

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

A sweet story with a lovable bad guy gone good

Tristan, the youngest of seven brothers, returns to his home town to open his own bakery after fleeing from a bad relationship.
Jake is trying to make his way through life after being released from prison. He has a job and a home, both provided by his sister, and he promised to stop trying to rescue people in distress. Though, can he stop himself once he meets Tristan and there is an instant connection between them?
I loved the story of the bad boy trying to make good on his life though he's constantly fighting against those who use his imprisonment against him. Jake is a guy that is constantly trying to do the right thing and that shines through when it comes to his sister and Tristan.
Tristan is fighting an uphill battle when it comes to his six older brothers. He knows they all love him but with how protective they all are, it's not helping him to live his own life. Owning his own bakery has been a lifelong dream of his but his ex turned into someone controlling that eventually led Tristan to fight for his own life. His unexpected meeting and attraction to Jake is one of the few things keeping him going while he battles against family, friends and an ex that won't take no for an answer. Tristan is such a sweet guy, easily lovable. He seems like a pushover but when it comes down to it, he fights for what he wants. Namely the bakery, controlling his own life and Jake.
We have a great cast of characters in the town including all of Tristan's family. I'm hoping they all get stories of their own too! In true small town fashion, nothing stays secret for long and everyone knows everyone but I love that and the way it's written.
The story line over all did move quite quickly for me, though I am aware that it's a shorter book. Some more scenes could have added more depth to relationships and goings on but I liked the book overall.
I'd definitely recommend this book. It's sweet, a little emotional and a bit dramatic. A dash of everything to make it an enjoyable read.
I enjoyed the narration, with different tones used for different characters and Simon manages to draw you into the story as it unfolds, both between Tristan and Jake as well as Tristan's fight against his ex and family. Emotion comes through well but on occasion things can feel a little monotone when talking through the story line that's not voicing the characters. Overall it's a good story with good narration that I would recommend to others who enjoy sweet contemporary romances.