Thank you to Booksparks and Berkley Publishing for sending me a copy of Simmer Down by Sarah Smith to read!
“Nikki DiMarco knew life wouldn’t be all sunshine and coconuts when she quit her dream job to help her mom serve up mouthwatering Filipino dishes to hungry beachgoers, but she didn’t expect the Maui food truck scene to be so eat-or-be-eaten—or the competition to be so smoking hot.
But Tiva’s Filipina Kusina has faced bigger road bumps than the arrival of Callum James. Nikki doesn’t care how delectable the British food truck owner is—he rudely set up shop next to her coveted beach parking spot. He’s stealing her customers and fanning the flames of a public feud that makes her see sparks.
The solution? Let the upcoming Maui Food Festival decide their fate. The winner keeps the spot. Loser pounds sand. But the longer their rivalry simmers, the more Nikki starts to see a different side of Callum…a sweet, protective side. Is she brave enough to call a truce? Or will trusting Callum with her heart mean jumping from the frying pan into the fire?”
For my second read of the New Year, I wanted to read a romance with a little spice and feel-good moments after reading a rather intense thriller. So, I chose Simmer Down (published on October 13, 2020) to read.
I loved the premise of the book – give me all the stories that incorporate cooking and a little (or a lot of) romance. But, there was no simmering down in this story as it was full of steamy moments that I could feel my cheeks turning red as I read through each interaction between Callum and Nikki.
I loved that Simmer Down reflected the point of view of only Nikki DiMarco. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love being privy to both sides of the story, but there was something nice about not knowing what Callum James was thinking. Did he have feelings for Nikki? Was he looking for a casual fling with his rival? Not knowing is what kept me more intrigued as I wanted to see when Callum would appear next.
My only complaint about the book is that, towards the end, Nikki started to annoy me; she was constantly back-and-forth on what she wanted to do and what her feelings were for Callum. At times, I thought that a chapter would lead to one final wrap-up, but then the story kept going. In all honesty, it could’ve been 30-40 pages shorter, and I would’ve enjoyed it more.
BUT, I did find Simmer Down to be an entertaining, steamy read, and I’m glad that I began my year with this romance. I will be looking forward to reading the next book that Sarah Smith cooks up.