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Topic: Delicious - by Sherry Thomas

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Subject: Delicious - by Sherry Thomas
Date Posted: 7/30/2008 10:00 AM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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Okay, I finished this in the wee hours this morning - about 4:30.  I was/am so tired, but I just could not put it down.  This thing is so keeper.  Probably my number 2 favorite for this year, right behind Duke of Shadows by Meridith Duran.  I cried a couple of times, I laughed, and I was as giddy as a kid at the ending.  Sherry Thomas outdid herself this time.  With references to Cinderella and fairy tales all throughout the book, making a reference to that story would be almost unavoidable.  It is something of a fairy tale love story, but if this heroine is Cinderella, her tiara is a little on the tarnished side.  I totally loved her though.  Everything she does, although you might not immediately understand it, makes sense, flows so well with the story.  And the hero is completely to die for.  He is so different in every other aspect of his life, except for when it comes to the heroine.  He's absolutely head over heels in love, and breaks every rule that he's ever set for himself for her.  You can't help but love him.

This book includes a few of the elements that I found problematic with Private Arrangements - a long separation of ten years, the use of flashbacks - but the way they were used was not as heavy-handed as I found them to be in the previous book, and the circumstances between the H&H were so different, that things like the separation made perfect sense; I didn't have that same incredulity that people separated for that long could really be in love.  In this case, the heroine is the one who left the hero, and it wasn't after marriage, it was after one night together, and given her connection to the hero (which he didn't know about at the time), it was actually pretty noble of her to disappear - she did it for him.  And maybe a little for herself too - he wouldn't have been a happy camper when he found out who she was in any case, and understandably so.  He carries a torch for her for ten years though, and the anticipation of them getting back together, all of the buildup to it before it happens kept me on the edge of my seat until it finally happens.  He keeps her galoshes that she leaves behind for 10 years.  Cleans them up & puts them in a box, and takes them out to pine over occasionally.  How's that for sweet?  Not a glass slipper, but still... 

It's too hard to explain the separation & why it takes a while for the romance to kick back into high gear when they see each other again (without giving spoilers) though.  And I don't want to give any spoilers because this book is so good, you just have to read it for yourselves.  The flashbacks worked great too.  Again, not so heavy-handed, and the author only used them for a few chapters, and only as much as was absolutely necessary.  The secondary romance was great too - which I also don't want to spoil by giving away any details.  It was strong, but not too much of a distraction, as the main characters' HEA sort of depends to some degree on it working out - or at least you have that sense of it at the time.  I didn't initially like the heroine of the secondary romance, but came to understand her, and then grew to like her as the story evolved.

Anyway, I VERY highly recommend getting this one, even if you have to end up buying it new.  It's worth it.  It's going on my keeper shelf - forever:P  I will definitely read it again.



Last Edited on: 7/30/08 10:06 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 7/30/2008 10:50 AM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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Oh - just happened to think, if anybody hasn't seen it yet, here's the Dear Author review on it:  dearauthor.com/wordpress/2008/07/29/review-delicious-by-sherry-thomas-2/#comment-168328

I totally agree - well, I gave it an A+:P

Date Posted: 7/30/2008 10:54 AM ET
Member Since: 4/7/2008
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So Kim...is this a series? Do I need to read Private Arrangements first?

Date Posted: 7/30/2008 11:04 AM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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My memory is so bad when it comes to little details, but I didn't spot any connection at all between any of the characters, and I didn't see any reappearances either, so I'd say no, you don't have to read Private Arrangements first.  PA is not so fresh in my limited memory space though either:P  If there are any connections there, it still does great as a stand alone.  In fact, some people might enjoy Delicious more if they don't read it first.  Private Arrangements was a hard book for me to come to terms with.  On the one hand I loved a lot of things about it, but on the other, there was a lot that stretched my credulity, and just plain irritated me too.

Date Posted: 7/30/2008 2:56 PM ET
Member Since: 11/5/2007
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I liked Delicious way more than the books I have bought lately. 

But I liked Private Arrangements way better than Delicious.  I loved the heroine in PA much more than Verity.  That's probably why I found the chemistry hotter in PA, too.  All that snappy dialogue between two really strong people...  Maybe it is unfair to compare them.  But even if I evaluated Delicious on its own, there was just this element of depressing that I couldn't shake with the hero and heroine. 

I think for me this had a lot to do with the fact that one of Verity's really important personal relationships (trying not to be a spoiler!) was SUCH a bummer.  Every time it came up I wanted to cry and NOT in a good way.  PA pulled my heartstrings but made everythig ok in the end.  But Delicious left that relationship I referred to hanging out there in the end without a happy ending I so need in romances.

Anyway, I like reading point and counter point reviews on this board so I'll offer my final assessment.  I couldn't put it down while I was reading it (up wayyy to late last nigh)... but I won't be reading it again. 

Date Posted: 7/30/2008 3:37 PM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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I love point - counter point reviews too.  They give everyone such a well rounded view of books they're thinking about reading themselves.  I didn't find Stuart & Verity's story at all depressing, but that's just me.  If I'm going to plunge in there and read something I know going in contains elements I'm not usually tremendously fond of, like the ten year separation, this is exactly how I'd want it.  You know that time has passed, but she doesn't make you eat it, the way it felt (to me) she did with Private Arrangements.  That was the story I found so depressing.  I truly could not wrap my imagination around a hero who was in love with the heroine, but imposed this ten year separation in their marriage, because he just couldn't forgive her for this stupid mistake she made.  I know it was a huge mistake, but TEN YEARS?  Geez.  And if he couldn't forgive her, then he just couldn't.  He should have divorced her & let her get on with her life.  Instead, he lets all of this time go by, and then when she decides to take control and move on, he wants her back.  That was a total eye-roller for me.  A self made tragedy that didn't have to be.  he should have gone back when he found out about the miscarriage.  or he should have jumped out of the boat and swam to her the day he sees her on the river in Amsterdam.  So many stupidly wasted opportunities it was ridiculous after a while.  It felt like some of Laura Kinsale's more torturous stories like The Hidden Heart and Dream Hunter- well written, but more like oral surgery than a good read.  But that's not to say I didn't like it.  I thought it was very good.  I posted my copy, and then turned around & got Claudia's copy from her when she decided she didn't want it.  I just knew on some level I'd eventually want to read it again, or that Sherry Thomas was on her way to a brilliant future in writing romance, and I'd be kicking myself later for not hanging onto it.

And I think I embraced Verity's character in a way I was unable to embrace Gigi.  Gigi is such a schemer when she first meets Camden in PA, and although I understood her & grew to like her, I just felt flat-out sorry for her when everything went wrong.  But it was also sort of like feeling sorry for your kid when you put him in timeout.  Consequences suck (and hers were excessive, no doubt), but...  And then late in the book, I just thought she got a little too TSTL to feel all that sorry for.  Verity, on the other hand, was easy for me to identify with and understand.  She understood the hopelessness of her situation; that she'd do Stuart (and ultimately herself) more harm than good by staying and marrying him, so she did the only thing she believed she could do - the unselfish thing; she let him go.  It was a choice that I really bought into as being a selfless act of love.  And I couldn't blame her for it later, in spite of the fact that there was at least a chance they could have worked it out if she'd told him the truth right away.  But her life was kind of a series of those kinds of difficult choices & sacrifices made for the people that she loved, and regardless of how poorly the choices she made turned out, she always came across to me as someone with a good heart who was trying to do the right thing.  She would be alternately weak & strong because she couldn't stop wanting things, but she always tried & never really gave up hope that everything would come out right in the end.



Last Edited on: 7/31/08 12:21 AM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 7/30/2008 4:06 PM ET
Member Since: 2/21/2008
Posts: 4,433
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Kim, I was SOOO looking forward to Private Arrangements and bought the book right way but when I actually read it I was SO disappointment and mainly because of the whole flashback thing every other chapter and now you saying is they use the flashback thing in this book too?..Augh...now I'm afriad..should I even read it? But your review makes the book sound really sweet./good. I don't know what to do now.

 

Aso I agree with on how stupid Private Arrangements's hero was for not forgiving her. I also found the whole reson to be not all that great..I mean so she lied but it wasn't even all that bad.



Last Edited on: 7/30/08 4:10 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 7/30/2008 4:42 PM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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Well, I think you should get it.  The flashbacks in this one weren't at all overdone.  It's only about 4 chapters, I think, that she uses them in, and because she uses the flashbacks to show you these things, it actually speeds up the story, rather than slowing it down, the way I felt they ultimately did in PA.  It was just too much for me there.  It disrupted the flow of the story - made it feel somewhat clumsy to me - and I can't tell you how many times I'd start into a chapter, and then have to flip back and check the date so I'd know where the hell I was in the story.  Ungainly is a good descriptive word.  Delicious is a prime example (again, in my opinion) of the use of flashbacks done right.  You get the backstory - which was essential - without the tedium of reading it in 15  or more linear chapters.  I liked PA, but I sensed that she could do better - which is why I bought Delicious.  I wasn't disappointed.  I'm so glad I bought this new and didn't wait for a WL offer, and how often does that happen?  Not very often for me:P



Last Edited on: 7/30/08 4:44 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 7/30/2008 4:50 PM ET
Member Since: 2/21/2008
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only 4 chapters..that doesn't sound bad..I guess I will pick the book up this friday when I go to walmart.

 

Date Posted: 7/30/2008 6:14 PM ET
Member Since: 10/19/2007
Posts: 1,028
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Okay Kim -- you gave me a hit with a Karen Ranney book, so I'm going to try Sherry Thomas.  Private Arrangements is available........does anyone have it on their shelf before I order fifo?

Date Posted: 7/30/2008 7:50 PM ET
Member Since: 12/7/2006
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I'll think I'll skip PA and go straight to Delicious.  The premise sounds more interesting to me anyway.

Date Posted: 7/30/2008 9:21 PM ET
Member Since: 10/19/2007
Posts: 1,028
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I wish I knew what Delicious was about.  There's no description on PBS.

Date Posted: 7/30/2008 10:03 PM ET
Member Since: 12/7/2006
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go to Amazon or B&N.

Date Posted: 7/31/2008 12:13 AM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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I sent the synopsis on the edit book data feature here & posted my "review" - such as it is:P  It reads more like a fangirl squee to me:P  The review is up, but sometimes it takes a day or two for new book data to get entered.  if it's not up by tomorrow I'll send it again.

Here's the book page link: Delicious

82 wishers, of course, but like PA, it's in all of the grocery stores & Walmart.  My suggestion is just buy it new.  Walmart is probably cheapest, unless anyone has some rewards or gift cards from B&N or Borders coming to them.  I wouldn't recommend buying it new if I didn't think it was well worth it.  Almost all of us are on book budgets because we read so much, but this is like splurging for some Belgian chocolates, instead of just buying a plain old Hershey bar:P  My opinion on it anyway.  Most of you know how my tastes run by now, so take it for whatever it's worth.



Last Edited on: 7/31/08 12:43 AM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 7/31/2008 5:29 PM ET
Member Since: 6/24/2005
Posts: 356
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I had a GC and ordered it yesterday, in the mail to me now.  I did like PA a lot more than others, and using the flashbacks to tell the story didn't bother me, I liked it and it didn't pull me out of the story.  I've been waiting to read this newest to see what I think.  I was pretty high up on the wishlist but decided I didn't want to wait any longer to read it, and I see Kim says I should, lol.

Date Posted: 7/31/2008 5:40 PM ET
Member Since: 4/16/2007
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Darn you, Kim! I succumbed and got it at Borders today. Or maybe I should say, "Thanks, Kim, for the heads-up!"

Date Posted: 8/1/2008 12:08 AM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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Great...  If you guys hate it I'm taking an extended vacation:P

Date Posted: 8/10/2008 7:57 PM ET
Member Since: 10/19/2007
Posts: 1,028
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I just finished Private Arrangements and it was great.  Can't wait to buy Delicious.  This author is much different than anyone I've come across in a long while.  She almost reminded me a little of Judith Ivory.

Date Posted: 8/11/2008 3:07 PM ET
Member Since: 1/11/2007
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Considering how much I hated Private Arrangement, I think I'll skip it.  I understand Duke of Shadows is on its way to me =)

Date Posted: 8/15/2008 11:07 AM ET
Member Since: 6/24/2005
Posts: 356
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I liked PA and didn't mind the flashbacks in that one.  Delicious, I just finished and loved it, agree with all you said, Kim, and I do think the flashbacks flowed more evenly in this one, done well  here.  I liked the Cinderella references and yes, his keeping the galoshes was sweet.  Going to be a top read for me this year.  I sure was hungry for some French  food and pastry after, lol.  I can't wait to see what she does next.

I think the main reason for those not liking PA was the shallowness of the characters, which is not what you will find in Delicious, so you might just like it.

 

Date Posted: 8/15/2008 11:23 AM ET
Member Since: 7/1/2008
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Last Edited on: 1/19/09 1:49 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 8/15/2008 12:41 PM ET
Member Since: 12/7/2006
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I'm still trying to read Delicious.  I enjoy all the food talk (reminds me of the movie Like Water for Chocolate) but I'm not really overwhelmed by the characters as yet.

Date Posted: 8/15/2008 9:38 PM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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Pam - absolutely.  You hit it right on the head.  The H&H in Private Arrangements were ultimately pretty shallow people, both of them.  I suppose I sympathized with the heroine more than the hero (he came off as a vindictive jerk through a lot of it), but that was really just because she did the most suffering throughout the book.  All of that sympathy kinda went poof though when she went all TSTL toward the end about marrying the other dufus:P  What put PA on my keeper shelf was originality more than any other factor.  I love historicals, but I'm so very tired of the recycled regency plots, so when something unique comes along, whether it's perfectly executed or not, it tends to get higher marks from me.



Last Edited on: 8/15/08 9:39 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 8/15/2008 9:42 PM ET
Member Since: 10/19/2007
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..........I liked PA and didn't mind the flashbacks in that one. 

Actually, I didn't mind the flashbacks at all in PA.  As long as I keep turning the page and the h/h are still the main characters of the book, I'm happy.  I remember Kim mentioning that in PA there is a long separation of the 2, which is true, but the flashbacks kept them in the forefront of the story.  I hate when there's a separation and people just disappear.

Date Posted: 8/15/2008 10:21 PM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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And Thomas is so talented - has such a unique voice.  She reminds me of Judith Ivory as well.



Last Edited on: 8/15/08 10:22 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
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