Greetings and salutations my fellow Humpday folks. Halfway there - wet week here on the East Coast! With our scrambled seasons we have blizzards in March and April showers in May - gotta love "climate change"! Harumph. On the bright side, my garden is in, the seeds are sprouting and as soon as the lawn mower fairy brings me a socket wrench to change the spark plug in my hand-me-down mower, my neighbors will no longer abhor me! (Doesn't that sound macho, me, using a socket wrench???? Ha!) Anyway, I worked all weekend and (shhhh, don't tell the boss) caught up on lots of great reads on audio book so my TBR pile is slowing getting whittled down for about five minutes. One of the latest catches is from a local author who we chanced upon at the Virginia Festival of the Book! Stay tuned dear readers for a curious culinary sexcapade.....but first, a treat of the calorie free eye candy variety. Yummmmmmm!
Liz Everly, Saffron Nights, Kensington Books, February 2013
Wherever they travel, there’s an aphrodisiac waiting to whet their appetites…
Brazil…Hawaii…India….As a food writer, Maeve has just been handed the hottest opportunity of her career. She’s being sent on an international research tour for an aphrodisiac cookbook. The downside is that she has to travel with rock star photographer and womanizer Jackson Dodds. And the upside is that she has to travel with Jackson Dodds. Because once they meet, Maeve understands why he’s been named “America’s Most Eligible Bachelor”—and despite her best intentions, all she can think about is putting their arousing recipes to the test…
Sexy and talented, Jackson can have any woman he desires. But lately, the thrill is gone—until he lays eyes on Maeve, who exudes sensuality like no one else. She’s determined to keep things professional, but he knows the attraction is mutual. And as they travel the world, sampling warming saffron, juicy papaya, silky avocado, rare herbs and teas—and a mushroom whose very aroma sends women to heights of ecstasy—both discover a hunger they’ve never known, and don’t want to resist, even amid unexpected danger…
There are some combinations that just seem to match perfectly: peanut butter and chocolate, Proseco and Thai curry, Matthew McConaughey and no shirt, you get the picture. Liz Everly manages to find another great combination - food writer and photographer - two foodies, sexual chemistry and a murder mystery! Saffron Nights takes the reader on an edgy sensual tour across the world and, like all great meals leaves a lingering taste for just a little something more.
Jackson and Maeve have that classic moment in their work relationship where they dare to surmise what would happen if it evolved. Maeve, interestingly enough, happens to be the more cautious of the two when it comes to considering romance. An extraordinarily passionate woman, she savors everything that dazzles the senses. For her sex is about gratification but relationships don't go beyond skin to skin contact. Jackson, with his playboy reputation, hides behind his camera lens and prefers to keep it between the sheets as well. With such similar approaches, one would wonder why it takes so long for them to tumble into bed.
Aside from the overt sensuality of their aphrodisiac food research and the moments of sexually charged tension between Jackson and Maeve, the storyline of Saffron Nights is complex and richly written. The characters are extremely complicated, introverts that live in their heads much of the time, at times frustrating for their sheer inability to communicate their needs, concerns and fears. The mystery involving the murder of Chef woven into the story which reads like part travelogue, part food history, part romance, teases the reader with dark delight. As the characters globe trot in search for spices and ingredients that titillate the palate and passions those who indulge, Saffron Nights commands constant attention lest the reader miss one of the tantalizing details.
Highly enjoyable, definitely more erotic than your average cookbook, Saffron Nights rates a decadent FOUR Chocolate-Dipped Strawberries!
This book was given to us by the author for an unbiased review. Many thanks.