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Food for Thought

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Emmett Gant was planning to tell his father something really important one Sunday morning—but his father passed away first. Now, nearly three years later, Emmett can't seem to clear up who he should be with—the girl with the apple cheeks and the awesome family, or his snarky neighbor, Keegan, who never sees his family but who makes Emmett really happy just by coming over t Emmett Gant was planning to tell his father something really important one Sunday morning—but his father passed away first. Now, nearly three years later, Emmett can't seem to clear up who he should be with—the girl with the apple cheeks and the awesome family, or his snarky neighbor, Keegan, who never sees his family but who makes Emmett really happy just by coming over to chat. Emmett needs clarity. Fortunately for Emmett, his best friend’s mom has a cookbook that promises to give Emmett insight and good food, and Emmett is intrigued. After the cookbook follows him home, Emmett and Keegan decide to make the recipe “For Clarity,” and what ensues is both very clear—and a little surprising, especially to Emmett's girlfriend. Emmett is going to have to think hard about his past and the really important thing he forgot to tell his father if he wants to get the recipe for love just right.


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Emmett Gant was planning to tell his father something really important one Sunday morning—but his father passed away first. Now, nearly three years later, Emmett can't seem to clear up who he should be with—the girl with the apple cheeks and the awesome family, or his snarky neighbor, Keegan, who never sees his family but who makes Emmett really happy just by coming over t Emmett Gant was planning to tell his father something really important one Sunday morning—but his father passed away first. Now, nearly three years later, Emmett can't seem to clear up who he should be with—the girl with the apple cheeks and the awesome family, or his snarky neighbor, Keegan, who never sees his family but who makes Emmett really happy just by coming over to chat. Emmett needs clarity. Fortunately for Emmett, his best friend’s mom has a cookbook that promises to give Emmett insight and good food, and Emmett is intrigued. After the cookbook follows him home, Emmett and Keegan decide to make the recipe “For Clarity,” and what ensues is both very clear—and a little surprising, especially to Emmett's girlfriend. Emmett is going to have to think hard about his past and the really important thing he forgot to tell his father if he wants to get the recipe for love just right.

30 review for Food for Thought

  1. 4 out of 5

    ~✡~Dαni(ela) ♥ ♂♂ love & semi-colons~✡~

    ~4.5~ All Emmett has ever wanted is a family, a big, close-knit, rowdy group that hugs and talks and cooks together. Raised by a taciturn, withdrawn father, Emmett has had enough silence for a lifetime. After his heart is broken by the mysterious Jordyn and his father dies, Emmett vows to belong. You didn't come home in 107 degree heat of a blistering July and heat your kitchen because you were looking to eat right. You did it to be kind to someone. You did it for love. What Emmett doesn't rea ~4.5~ All Emmett has ever wanted is a family, a big, close-knit, rowdy group that hugs and talks and cooks together. Raised by a taciturn, withdrawn father, Emmett has had enough silence for a lifetime. After his heart is broken by the mysterious Jordyn and his father dies, Emmett vows to belong. You didn't come home in 107 degree heat of a blistering July and heat your kitchen because you were looking to eat right. You did it to be kind to someone. You did it for love. What Emmett doesn't realize is that he already has a family. His childhood friend Vinnie and Vinnie's parents and siblings have long ago embraced Emmett as one of their own. Emmett means well, but watching him interact with his girlfriend Christine and best friend Keegan was a form of slow torture. Even Emmett's cat, the feisty, punitive George (that's Madame George, if you please), knows better. Stay with me; this story calls for a cat cuddle. And then there's Keegan. Keegan, Emmett's neighbor and best friend, deserves his own T-shirt! He is adorably snarky and insanely patient. In his tiny briefs and colorful tank tops, Keegan is hard to resist. How has Emmett managed for so long? Keegan rolled his eyes. "Emmett, after we wash dishes, can we have sex?" "God, yes. Please." "Then I've had all the food I need." This is a SWEET Amy Lane story, and those are my favorite. This is a novella, but it reads at once longer and shorter than its 1,300 locations, longer because the characters feel real and are well developed, and shorter because it's so entertaining and well written (of course!), the words just flow and before you know it, the story's over. I loved everything about Food for Thought: the grumpy cat, the hilarious banter between Keegan and Emmett, the beet explosion (yes, BEETS; don't ask), and the rather HUNGRY, dirty (very dirty in more ways than one!) sex. Hell, I even liked Christine the girlfriend, especially after she left. Emmett seeks clarity in a recipe from a family cookbook passed on to him by Vinnie's supportive, awesome mom. But what Emmett finally comes to realize is that clarity is sometimes found in the mishaps and messes, in friendship, and in the real acceptance of a boy who's loved you all along. Rounding down only because I wanted MORE, more Vinnie, more George the cat, and certainly more Keegan and Emmett.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Kaje Harper

    This is a short story with one of the type of MCs that Amy Lane does so well - the guy who seems to be doing all right, but hides a little well of past pain under a surface of coping. Emmett spent his childhood years after his mother's death feeling lonely, living with his caring but distant and silent father, and taking crumbs of comfort from the wonderful big family of his best friend. Over time, Emmett has decided that the thing he wants most when he grows up is to create that kind of big fam This is a short story with one of the type of MCs that Amy Lane does so well - the guy who seems to be doing all right, but hides a little well of past pain under a surface of coping. Emmett spent his childhood years after his mother's death feeling lonely, living with his caring but distant and silent father, and taking crumbs of comfort from the wonderful big family of his best friend. Over time, Emmett has decided that the thing he wants most when he grows up is to create that kind of big family for himself, the kind where there will be kids and food and laughter and people, and no one will live in silent loneliness. The problem is, Emmett thinks the only way to have the kind of family he wants is to marry a girl and have children to raise in the cradle of her large family and relations. And that would be fine, if he was even a little bit attracted to girls. But he's got himself into a mess, dating a woman who is everything he wants and needs, except that she's not a man. Emmet lies to his friends, to her, and to himself about who he is and where this is going to go. And the fall-out may not be pretty. Fortunately he has good friends, including his flamboyantly gay neighbor Keegan, to help him figure it out. This is Amy-light, with low-key angst, a cute grumpy cat, some fortunate disasters, and a happy ending. I felt really badly for the girlfriend right from the start, knowing it wouldn't turn out well for her, but the love story is funny and sweetly warm, and short. A little taste of sugar for a day when you're in the mood for that.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Ami

    3.5 stars I fell in love with the cover of these series. Plus, I am familiar with all of the authors involved, although interestingly, I have NOT read their stories in quite a while. Yes, I have not read Amy Lane in over a year – I know she is a fan favorite in the genre but her stories are no longer what I am looking for. Not a sign of her quality writing of course, it’s just that, well, taste changes. Right? Anyway, so yes, this is my first Amy Lane since 2013. This novella can easily be read as 3.5 stars I fell in love with the cover of these series. Plus, I am familiar with all of the authors involved, although interestingly, I have NOT read their stories in quite a while. Yes, I have not read Amy Lane in over a year – I know she is a fan favorite in the genre but her stories are no longer what I am looking for. Not a sign of her quality writing of course, it’s just that, well, taste changes. Right? Anyway, so yes, this is my first Amy Lane since 2013. This novella can easily be read as stand-alone (the first entry of Tale of the Curious Cookbook is written by R.J. Scott: For a Rainy Afternoon) because the only similarity in them is the cookbook. I thought the origin of the cookbook and how it can be ‘owned’ by different people is better explained in this one (compared to R.J. Scott’s). Recipes for the Heart: Mystical Meals and Dangerous Desserts, by Granny B is copied and passed on to family members, friends, relatives … and each recipe for different kind of situations: For Rainy Days, For Courting … … and in Emmett’s case, he would need Food For Thoughts… for clarity. Emmett needs it; he has wanted to have a big loud family for such a long time, ever since his mother left him, and his father, though loved him, was not very much of a talker. It had been quiet at Emmett’s house. Sure, Emmett has a good friend whose family welcome him with open arms, invite him to big shindigs and all. But Emmett wants his own, even if he must deny his own sexuality and dated a girl for it –she has awesome family that Emmett can be part of. Then there is Keegan, his snarky neighbor. Who may not have the big family Emmett wants, but whom Emmett feels so right to be with whenever they are doing things together. This novella is opened with quite a sad scene. I immediately had tears in my eyes (damn you Amy Lane!). But no worries, in overall it is angst-lite story. I liked being involved in Emmett’s journey as he finally learned that he already had a family of his own. Maybe it started small, just two people, but family could be expanded with friends and other people who are important. It was wonderful when Emmett realized that. Keegan was loud and colorful enough to brighten Emmett’s life. I loved the way he pushed his way in. I loved the contrast of Keegan and Emmett’s description of his own father, so for Emmett, he knows that there will be no more silent moments with Keegan in his life. This could be a 4-stars read if not for one PERSONAL issue. I’m not really comfortable with the girlfriend situation. I am not a huge fan of one person being hurt in order for the main couple to be together ((view spoiler)[and it is still CHEATING on Emmett's part, no matter the fact that he and the girlfriend never have sex (hide spoiler)] . Duly noted that the girlfriend is not portrayed as a villain (it is one of my pet peeves in MM romance. I am a woman, I refuse to feel happy whenever my gender being written with bad lights, except if, you know, it’s part of a thriller/fantasy context maybe, because villain chick in that way could be cool) … but I still would like it better if such plot doesn’t exist altogether. As always, it’s a personal thing and may not be an issue for most readers. It’s still a good read, likable characters, sexy moments, and a CAT :). The ARC is provided by the publisher for an exchange of fair and honest review. No high rating is required for any ARC received.

  4. 5 out of 5

    ☆ Todd

    I quite enjoyed this latest light, fluffy read from Amy. Emmett knew that he was loved growing up; however, it's one thing to know it and another to have it shown to you, regularly and with feeling. Emmett's mother left when he was very young, so he was left to be raised by his stoic, quiet father. But children need to be shown that they're loved and feel it in their little bones, so Emmett began to gravitate toward his best friend Vinnie's family home more often than his own. There he was shown, w I quite enjoyed this latest light, fluffy read from Amy. Emmett knew that he was loved growing up; however, it's one thing to know it and another to have it shown to you, regularly and with feeling. Emmett's mother left when he was very young, so he was left to be raised by his stoic, quiet father. But children need to be shown that they're loved and feel it in their little bones, so Emmett began to gravitate toward his best friend Vinnie's family home more often than his own. There he was shown, without a doubt, that he was loved by their entire large family, while his dad mostly watched and waited for him on their front porch next door. Showing him that he is loved, but unable to express it. But after having his heart broken by his first boyfriend, Jordyn, his college roommate, before he could come out to his father, he's devastated and climbs back into the closet. After college, Emmett begins dating a woman, Christine (aka "Chris-thing"), as his adorable, flaming next door neighbor, Keegan, refers to her. Keegan has always been there for Emmett, from the day he broke down shortly after moving into his new home, missing his recently-departed father. And Emmett regularly uses his free time, which could be spent with Christine, to spend time with Keegan. And Keegan does notice. And Keegan isn't the only who doesn't like "Chris-thing". Emmett's sassy, vindictive cat, George, also hates her with a fiery vengeance; pooping on any item that she leaves behind. Everything finally comes to a head while Emmett and Keegan are trying out recipes from a family heirloom cookbook from Vinnie's mother. Queue squishy lube sounds and a girl screaming from shock in 3... 2... 1... GO! The story was short and sweet, with very little angst, but I definitely felt the connection between Emmett and Keegan. And after reading this book, I will NEVER, EVER, EVER make beet porridge in my own kitchen, thank you very much. ;- ) It did lead to some HOT, flip-floppy sex, but my anal-retentive (shut up) side kept screaming, "OMG, beet juice on white carpeting, white walls and white sheets???" hehe 4 *beet-stain-red* stars for this sweet and sexy read. ----------------------------------------- ** My ARC copy of the book was provided to me by the publisher for a fair, unbiased review.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Ele

    This was a great light and sweet Amy Lane short story and I really enjoyed it. Considering its short length the characters were developed pretty well and I really felt Emmet's and Keegan's connection. I think we can all agree that the one sex scene in this book counts for ten. Plus, I don't think I 'll ever look at beets the same way ever again. Beets...on the floor, walls, kitchen cabinets and appliances....on the sheets, on their clothes...on the cat maybe?? Yeah, this gives dirty sex a whole n This was a great light and sweet Amy Lane short story and I really enjoyed it. Considering its short length the characters were developed pretty well and I really felt Emmet's and Keegan's connection. I think we can all agree that the one sex scene in this book counts for ten. Plus, I don't think I 'll ever look at beets the same way ever again. Beets...on the floor, walls, kitchen cabinets and appliances....on the sheets, on their clothes...on the cat maybe?? Yeah, this gives dirty sex a whole new meaning but I Ioved it. I also loved George the cat, Vinnie and his family but I could really do without the girlfriend part. The story with Jordyn, Emmet's boyfriend from college that left him, kind of broke my heart. I wish we could get his story, although I don't think it would be a light one... Also, I felt that it ended a bit abruptly. I was really looking forward to Keegan meeting Emmet's family. Overall, a realyll great read. Just what I needed...

  6. 4 out of 5

    Elspeth

    Nope. Cheating isn't my thing. (view spoiler)[Especially when you know your "girlfriend" is coming over and will walk in on you in the act. (hide spoiler)]

  7. 5 out of 5

    Karen

    Oh, this one's adorable... Amy Lane does family like few others do. There's the family you're given and the family you make. Sometimes you got to love and keep both but often times it's the one you make that nourishes your soul. I really enjoyed this one. It was a bit of a slow burn on but worth the wait when things finally came together. As always Ms Lane knew what she was doing and I was left with a short, sweet romance that came together beautifully. Philip Alces was the narrator for this boo Oh, this one's adorable... Amy Lane does family like few others do. There's the family you're given and the family you make. Sometimes you got to love and keep both but often times it's the one you make that nourishes your soul. I really enjoyed this one. It was a bit of a slow burn on but worth the wait when things finally came together. As always Ms Lane knew what she was doing and I was left with a short, sweet romance that came together beautifully. Philip Alces was the narrator for this book and I quite enjoyed his voices for both Emmett and Keegan and was given an enjoyable narration that enhanced a really sweet story. This one definitely worked for me so far it's my favorite from these stories. But I've still got 2 stories to go...so we'll see what happens.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Bitchie

    Amy always brings out a tear or two, even in her fluffier books, and this was no exception.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Jewel

    This story was cute in a way that only Amy Lane can really manage. Take a boy in denial, add in a big, loving, and perceptive surrogate family, stir in just a touch of magic, in the way of a very old cookbook, and you get Food for Thought. Emmett was a boy who knew his father loved him, but they never really spoke. Emmett never got a chance to tell his father that he's gay and he never got the chance to say goodbye. So, for nearly three years, Emmett denies who he is. He has no idea that pretty m This story was cute in a way that only Amy Lane can really manage. Take a boy in denial, add in a big, loving, and perceptive surrogate family, stir in just a touch of magic, in the way of a very old cookbook, and you get Food for Thought. Emmett was a boy who knew his father loved him, but they never really spoke. Emmett never got a chance to tell his father that he's gay and he never got the chance to say goodbye. So, for nearly three years, Emmett denies who he is. He has no idea that pretty much everyone sees through him. Poor Emmett. Emmett's flamboyant friend and neighbor, Keegan, has been trying to get Emmett to have a moment of clarity since they met, two years ago. Emmett is a bit of a clueless boy, though, so Keegan has to work really hard. Keegan is quite clever, though, so maneuvering around the Chris-thing (that would be Emmett's girlfriend) is just part of the routine. Thank goodness for Emmett's surrogate family and one very special cookbook. Food for Thought is beautiful and brilliant. It's full of hope with a touch of whimsy. And it was just what I needed to read after a stressful and busy week.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Sandra

    4.5 stars This was just brilliant. Like Keegan said, there is something genuine about Emmett that is so sweet that you can't dislike him even when he is being an idiot. And keegan. Oh beautiful, patient, kind, Keegan. I definitely cried a bit but I wouldn't say it's angsty. All the crying was related to family, heart-break, and loss. But interspersed between moments of sweetness and joy. And some hot, hot sex. The fun little magical twist and Emmett's extended family through Vinnie's friendship ro 4.5 stars This was just brilliant. Like Keegan said, there is something genuine about Emmett that is so sweet that you can't dislike him even when he is being an idiot. And keegan. Oh beautiful, patient, kind, Keegan. I definitely cried a bit but I wouldn't say it's angsty. All the crying was related to family, heart-break, and loss. But interspersed between moments of sweetness and joy. And some hot, hot sex. The fun little magical twist and Emmett's extended family through Vinnie's friendship rounded out a wonderful story. Received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review, reviewed for Hearts On Fire Part of the Tales of the Curious Cookbook anthology, I liked 4/5 of the stories.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Serena Yates

    Very few authors do tortured characters as well as Amy Lane, and I always think I can deal with the emotional torture she puts them (and by extension, me) through. Emmett and Kegan certainly fit that bill, especially Emmet, who tells the story. Chapter one already did me in, and it got worse from there. The thing is though, and that is one of the reasons why I keep reading Amy’s books, the characters need as much help as anyone I’ve ever known, their issues are real, and the reward at the end is Very few authors do tortured characters as well as Amy Lane, and I always think I can deal with the emotional torture she puts them (and by extension, me) through. Emmett and Kegan certainly fit that bill, especially Emmet, who tells the story. Chapter one already did me in, and it got worse from there. The thing is though, and that is one of the reasons why I keep reading Amy’s books, the characters need as much help as anyone I’ve ever known, their issues are real, and the reward at the end is all worth it. The special touch of Granny B’s mysterious cookbook appearing to help Emmett and Keegan sort things out is extra nice, and, as always, “Food created out of love casts a spell all its own, but Granny B’s recipes add a little something extra.” Definitely true for this amazing story. Emmett has grown up an only child, and wants nothing more than a big, happy family. His father loved him (at least Emmett is pretty sure he did), but was a very taciturn man who did his best to raise Emmett after his wife left him. The tragedy of Emmett never having told him he is gay, and the wondering how he might have taken that news are hard on Emmett. Add to that the fear of rejection by the only family he has ever know, that of his best friend Vinnie from next door, and Emmett’s need to fit in is clear. But even three years later all his efforts to love a girl and start a family of his own are in vain. The struggle Emmett faces to be honest with himself, then maybe come out, is heartbreaking. Keegan is the neighbor where Emmett lives now, and he is clearly interested in Emmett. Well, I could see that, but Emmett keeps forcing himself to see Keegan as “just a friend”. One thing they have in common is the need to talk, and they do, but that doesn’t mean they actually communicate. Not until Granny B’s recipe “For Clarity” comes along – and boy, does it work! If you like tormented characters who have to really work for their happy ending, if you enjoy sweet romances starring one clueless man and the guy who hopelessly (or so he thinks) falls for him, and if you’re looking for a read that is as emotionally wrenching as it is hot and funny, then you will probably like this novella as much as I did. What a ride! NOTE: This book was provided by Dreamspinner Press for the purpose of a review on Rainbow Book Reviews.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Christy

    It’s very rare for Amy Lane to write a story that is less than 100 pages. Hell, most of the time she can’t contain herself to less than 200! I’m not saying this to scare you off. I’m telling you because when Amy does, the story is always as much of a jewel, with all the fabulousness that Amy makes it, as any of her other works. It amazes me, actually, that she can bring such incredible characters to life in such a short number of pages. But, I expected nothing else, and ‘Food for Thought’ might It’s very rare for Amy Lane to write a story that is less than 100 pages. Hell, most of the time she can’t contain herself to less than 200! I’m not saying this to scare you off. I’m telling you because when Amy does, the story is always as much of a jewel, with all the fabulousness that Amy makes it, as any of her other works. It amazes me, actually, that she can bring such incredible characters to life in such a short number of pages. But, I expected nothing else, and ‘Food for Thought’ might be Amy-lite, but it’s in no way less wonderful because of it. There’s nothing Emmett wants more than family. Not just any kind of family, mind you, a great big one, with lots of kids. Growing up an only child, he practically lived next door at Vinnie’s house with his huge family, and that’s what Emmett wants. He wants it enough to be dating a girl, even though the thought of sleeping with her makes him a little grossed out. But, that’s how you get that big family, right? You marry a girl, and you make babies. Well, Vinnie’s mom is pretty sure that what Emmett needs is the family cookbook Recipes for the Heart: Mystical Meals, and Dangerous Desserts, by Granny B. “Emmett?” Keegan whispered. “Yeah?” “Who taught you about gay sex?” Emmett tried to back up. A sweet, lovely, story with two main characters I couldn’t help but fall for. Emmett and Keegan are, to borrow a friend’s phrase, simply adorkable. The angst was nowhere near what you expect from this author, but it was just enough to make me sigh. Thank you, Amy, beautiful, as always. NOTE: This book was provided by Dreamspinner Press for the purpose of a review on Christy Loves 2 Read

  13. 5 out of 5

    Catherine

    *** 4.75 Stars ***

  14. 4 out of 5

    Nico Jaye

    Amy Lane Lite! Me wants! Me wants baaaaad!

  15. 4 out of 5

    Duck

    DNF This isn't for me too many things that make me uncomfortable. I skimmed and I don't think the good can outweigh the aspects that make me squirm.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer☠Pher☠

    This was so good!! I am so happy with this series so far! Happy, happy, happy. Magic cookbooks are awesome.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Barb ~rede-2-read~

    ARC provided by the publisher through Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words in exchange for an impartial review. The second story in the new series, Tales of the Curious Cookbook, features tall, socially awkward, shy Emmett Gant who has not been able to act on his desire for another man since he broke up with Jordyn, his college roommate and first love, three years ago. On the day he had been planning to come out to his father, he discovered his dad had passed away alone at his home. Devastated, an ARC provided by the publisher through Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words in exchange for an impartial review. The second story in the new series, Tales of the Curious Cookbook, features tall, socially awkward, shy Emmett Gant who has not been able to act on his desire for another man since he broke up with Jordyn, his college roommate and first love, three years ago. On the day he had been planning to come out to his father, he discovered his dad had passed away alone at his home. Devastated, and unable to vocalize the fact that he is gay to anyone else because, after all, he tried to tell his father but he died first so now he can’t tell anyone, and he turns to the solution of dating a woman. He’s a pretty emotionally damaged young man in want, in need, of a big family of his own. When he was a kid he was “adopted” by his best friend Vinnie’s large and boisterous family and that’s what he wants for his life now. Thinking that being married to a female is the key to that happiness, he’s been dating Christine, but he’s been unable to go further than to kiss her. Even his new best friend, Keegan, the cute guy who befriended him when he bought his home in a neighborhood not far from his workplace, discourages him from pursuing Christine. Emmett needs to have clarity, to be able to see the truth about himself as others see him and Flora, Vinne’s mom, has just the solution. She presents him with a copy of an old handwritten cookbook, Recipes for the Heart: Mystical Meals and Dangerous Desserts, by Granny B. He can’t believe she’d entrust him with something that should be a family heirloom and tries to leave it behind, but he finds it in his car when he gets back home. The key to Emmett’s issues is found in that cookbook with a recipe for beet porridge—the recipe for clarity. He and Keegan decide to make that recipe, and though the recipe itself is a disaster, the outcome is not. Both men find the truth and each other (view spoiler)[ and unfortunately, Christine finds both of them in bed! (hide spoiler)] But clarity indeed does ensue because Emmett pulls up his big boy panties and sets out to make things right—first with Christine, and then with his dad, and finally with Keegan. This was a short, but very sweet and emotionally charged story. Hey, it’s Amy Lane—of course, there’s emotion! It amazes me that she can wrap characters around my heart as quickly as she does, and she fills in family relationships with a few quick strokes of her keyboard, yet they are rich in detail and serve as a strong support for the MCs. I recommend this story to all lovers of M/M romance, but especially to those who love an emotionally damaged hero who finds the strength to accept love and move forward toward his HEA.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Love Bytes Reviews

    3 heart review by Amber The second installment of The Tales of the Curious Cookbook was a bit of a disappointment for me. And that fact alone seriously blows my mind because I’m not sure that I’ve ever been disappointed in an Amy Lane book before. She is now and forever will be an auto-buy author for me, so that hasn’t changed. There was something just off about this story. I wasn’t pulled in. I wasn’t emotionally connected, at all. I got the friendship, I got the cutesty flirting but the passiona 3 heart review by Amber The second installment of The Tales of the Curious Cookbook was a bit of a disappointment for me. And that fact alone seriously blows my mind because I’m not sure that I’ve ever been disappointed in an Amy Lane book before. She is now and forever will be an auto-buy author for me, so that hasn’t changed. There was something just off about this story. I wasn’t pulled in. I wasn’t emotionally connected, at all. I got the friendship, I got the cutesty flirting but the passionate love I usually feel between Amy Lane characters, just wasn’t there, in my opinion. Emmett Gant has put off telling his father he’s gay, for many years. Just when he builds up enough courage, his father passes away. Due to this event, Emmett decides to go back in the closet. Going as far as dating women and becoming emotionally involved with them. After his father’s passing he also grows closer to his best friend Vinnie and his family. Keegan is a good friend and neighbor to Emmett. He’s also a very out and proud gay man. Emmett and Keegan form a tight bond and become very close friends. Emmett is very much attracted to Keegan, that much is very obvious. The fact that Keegan reciprocates is obvious too. I don’t think I let myself really appreciate them together because I was still so hung up on some of the other aspects of the story. I didn’t get Emmett’s relationship with his father. They never really talked but they were close? Seems like his father really loved him but they never had a real conversation? That confused me. I also didn’t get why he went back in the closet? Seemed like he was punishing himself but I really didn’t understand it. Also, the whole Christine dynamic left me cold. We didn’t get much background on her, but apparently she really cared about Emmett, again I didn’t feel the connection. Overall, this story just perplexed me. The writing was great, as always, it was just the connections, the feelings that I missed. A copy of this book was provided in exchange for an honest review. Please visit www.lovebytesreviews.com to see this and many more reviews, author interviews, guestposts and giveaways!

  19. 4 out of 5

    Lelyana

    +++ 4,5 stars +++ This is Amy freakin' Lane, and I knew it after the first chapter that I'm going to love this. It was the same feeling like when I read Christmas Kitsch. There are some sweet cute moments, some sad teary moments, typical Amy. But OMG I loved these guys !!!!! This is a good pick for weekend. Highly recommended !

  20. 4 out of 5

    Lidia

    Short story but it not show because it is well developed. And the characters are all good . I absolutely loved Emmet and Keegan, so nice and tenderly sweet. I liked every single page of book, because family and home is be with who you love and that is what this story tells.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Lily

    2.9 stars rounded up. A heart warming story as always from the author, but I did not like how the girlfriend issues were handled. It was unfair to everyone involved and cast a shadow over what could have been a very sweet romance.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Valerie ❈M/M Romance Junkie❈

    3.5* well hell. I typed out a long (for me, anyway) review, and GR ate it! Just read the book. It's good.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Ann

    I love this flavor of Amy Lane. Sweet without being too much and just the right amount of snark to amuse me. I loved this afternoon read.

  24. 5 out of 5

    llv

    Rating: 3.5 stars A friend lent me her copy of this book since I had others in the series but not this one. I thought this was a good short story in the Tales of the Curious Cookbook series. I’m not sure I totally understood why Emmett was in such total denial, but the overall story kept me entertained.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Jen

    *3.5 stars*

  26. 5 out of 5

    Mark

    Talk about the worst case of self-denial ever. Emmett is so in the closet, but why? This is a wonderful coming out story. Not that Emmett has a problem with his sexuality he is just scared of losing what he holds dear and that is family. He fears that he will be rejected and therefore tries to fit all the norms as best he can. He is dating a sweet young girl and pretending that with time he could learn to love her but deep down knows that this will not be the case. No sex, just chaste kisses and Talk about the worst case of self-denial ever. Emmett is so in the closet, but why? This is a wonderful coming out story. Not that Emmett has a problem with his sexuality he is just scared of losing what he holds dear and that is family. He fears that he will be rejected and therefore tries to fit all the norms as best he can. He is dating a sweet young girl and pretending that with time he could learn to love her but deep down knows that this will not be the case. No sex, just chaste kisses and pecks on cheeks is his idea of going out with a girl. I can so understand Emmett’s predicament. Telling friends is one thing but telling family something completely different. The fear, upset and anguish of losing the love a family is enough in itself to keep a lot of people in the closet. He longs for a family, has heteronormative values so to speak but just can’t see that having a family and being gay can also work. He grew up without a mother and a father who loved him but wasn’t exactly the most communicative person. So he sees his best friend's family as his own. My goodness I loved this family too, especially the mother, Flora, a force to be reckoned with enough love for a whole battalion. She also loves Emmett dearly too and hates seeing the facade he is hiding behind. One conversation in the kitchen with Flora had me in absolute hysterics as she was trying to wheedle the truth out of Emmett. My sides were splitting feeling Emmett squirming away from the truth while Flora put him right on the spot and started to try and squeeze the truth out of him. She had his number as did his best friend and Flora’s son Vinnie. But it had to be Emmett’s job to come clean. This family just had so much love so there was reason for Emmett to be afraid of telling them the truth but this is always easier said than done. They would only ever be happy to see Emmett happy. A case of every one else knew Emmett was gay but he didn’t. He has a neighbour, Keegan, who is out and proud. They enjoy each other’s company so much that it as plain as his nose on his face but he keeps Keegan at a distance. That is until Granny B’s cookbook comes into play. OMG! These recipes are hot! The dam breaks and Emmett realises that there is no denying what he feels for Keegan anymore. The recipies work their charm and there can be no more confusion left for Emmett or Keegan after this. The first erotic scene with Keegan and Emmett was hot but also a little comical. Talk about a food fight - lol! Absolutely adored it! A sweet, short story that had me laughing, had its very poignant moments and I’ll never look at almond shortbread the same way again. I’m so loving this series of books and will be moving straight on to the next one. For a Rainy Day by RJ Scott coming up next! Narration Again nothing to criticise with the narration really. Wonderfully spoken and the voice characterisations were perfect. I loved Keegan’s voice, exactly how I would have imagined him even if I had read the book as opposed to listening to the audiobook. For me personally all I can say is a job well done Mr Alces. A sweet, short story that had me laughing, had its very poignant moments and I’ll never look at almond shortbread the same way again. I’m so loving this series of books and will be moving straight on to the next one. For a Rainy Day by RJ Scott coming up next!

  27. 4 out of 5

    Tara♥ {MindforBooks}

    Well that was rather lovely. Amy Lane could potentially be more book crack. I will be on the streets if this continues. Little warning for those who don't like this kind of thing. Emmett does have a girlfriend for a portion of the book, I suppose that what happens could be seen as cheating but how he handles it was pretty perfect for me and made me fall a little in love with him. (view spoiler)["This is not your fault. You weren't being stupid, or blind, or even cheated on, at least not until th Well that was rather lovely. Amy Lane could potentially be more book crack. I will be on the streets if this continues. Little warning for those who don't like this kind of thing. Emmett does have a girlfriend for a portion of the book, I suppose that what happens could be seen as cheating but how he handles it was pretty perfect for me and made me fall a little in love with him. (view spoiler)["This is not your fault. You weren't being stupid, or blind, or even cheated on, at least not until this afternoon. I wanted to want you. You're terrific. You're beautiful and awesome and amazing. And I thought that if I was going to settle down with a girl, it would have to be you, because you are really wonderful." (hide spoiler)] I'm now fascinated with the idea of Beet Porridge and after a google I found that Amy Lane has published a recipe on her blog so this is getting made at some stage in the near future. We don't have chipotle chile bullion cubes over here though so I'll have to look into making a broth from scratch so that will be nice and toxic!! Oh and an honorable mention goes out to George. The cat on the cover meant I had to read this and George was cranky and cool!

  28. 5 out of 5

    Pete W

    The opening was typical Amy Lane's tear fest. I have to skim that part since I was reading it in a shopping mall food court and I don't want to be seen weeping uncontrollably. I had difficulties connecting with book and the major part of that was because of Emmett. Emmett was, for lack of a better terms, neglected in so many ways that it was borderline abused. It was not intentional which hardly made it better but I guess it was better than being intentionally hurt... (view spoiler)[Mostly this st The opening was typical Amy Lane's tear fest. I have to skim that part since I was reading it in a shopping mall food court and I don't want to be seen weeping uncontrollably. I had difficulties connecting with book and the major part of that was because of Emmett. Emmett was, for lack of a better terms, neglected in so many ways that it was borderline abused. It was not intentional which hardly made it better but I guess it was better than being intentionally hurt... (view spoiler)[Mostly this stem from Emmett's caring but silent father. Combine with the trauma of what happen in college to exacerbated Emmett's baggage to the point of him tether on breaking apart completely. It was clear that he should have seen a psychiatrist. (hide spoiler)] I am not attracted to the kind of guy Emmett fancies, so that didn't help my problem with the connection. It didn't help that Emmett's voice was so far down de nile river to even acknowledge who he should have pursued. (view spoiler)[Even though the blurb teased that Emmett had to choose, it was a none issue after things came to head. There was no long pondering involved. (hide spoiler)] Also, I felt a bit short changed the way the book ended. (view spoiler)[I wanna actually read about Keegan meeting the family, not imagine it. (hide spoiler)] So 3.5 stars round down.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Teresa

    ****Reviewed for Prism Book Alliance®**** Even with Amy Lane’s sweet books, there is a little bit of sadness. Food For Thought is no different. As always though, her strong “family is what we make of it” message comes through and our hearts are by no means battered in this novella. Emmett’s life hasn’t been sunshine and puppies, but not without love. Still he struggles with his sexuality and a broken heart. Keegan’s family is not supportive, and he doesn’t see why Emmett would want one, but he is ****Reviewed for Prism Book Alliance®**** Even with Amy Lane’s sweet books, there is a little bit of sadness. Food For Thought is no different. As always though, her strong “family is what we make of it” message comes through and our hearts are by no means battered in this novella. Emmett’s life hasn’t been sunshine and puppies, but not without love. Still he struggles with his sexuality and a broken heart. Keegan’s family is not supportive, and he doesn’t see why Emmett would want one, but he is drawn to Emmett anyway. When Emmett is handed the Curious Cookbook by his best friend’s mother – the closest thing he has to a mother of his own – he is skeptical but intrigued and sets about making some of the recipes hoping for some clarity. I liked the chemistry Emmett and Keegan had, though I felt awful for Christine and what happened with her. It reduced my enjoyment of the story. However, that aside, I enjoyed the cooking, the cat, and the realizations Emmett made. I liked Vinnie and his mother and their support. I liked the story :)

  30. 5 out of 5

    Morgan Skye

    Emmett is hiding his sexuality from his friends and families because he thinks if he finds the right girl, makes his own family, he won’t risk a broken heart – again. Of course, Keegan is NOT down with that. He has feelings – big feelings – for Emmet, but thinks Emmett is straight… or is he? Anyhow, when the truth is revealed and the closure … closed?... Keegan and Emmett get their HEA. ** As usual Amy made me tear up when I read about the death of Emmett’s dad… God this was supposed to be a light s Emmett is hiding his sexuality from his friends and families because he thinks if he finds the right girl, makes his own family, he won’t risk a broken heart – again. Of course, Keegan is NOT down with that. He has feelings – big feelings – for Emmet, but thinks Emmett is straight… or is he? Anyhow, when the truth is revealed and the closure … closed?... Keegan and Emmett get their HEA. ** As usual Amy made me tear up when I read about the death of Emmett’s dad… God this was supposed to be a light sweet book! Damn you Amy (shaking fist!). But… of course that helps us to buy into Emmett’s lies and betrayals. I loved the cooking part and the paranormal aspect to the receiving of said book… In general I’m digging this series as a whole. Another win for the Queen of Angst! Audio Philip Alces is not my favorite narrator but he ROCKED this. He did an excellent job with the emotion and the humor. I really enjoyed his take on the story and think it added to the overall enjoyment of the story.

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