[two_third_last]When artisan ice cream maker Jay Brown first meets food writer Cameron Clay at a charity tasting event, they get along like strawberries and chocolate sauce. Jay’s unique flavors thrill more than Cameron’s jaded palate, but after a delicious encounter in Jay’s delivery truck, where extra-creamy frozen treats are not the only delights sampled, Cameron loses Jay’s contact info—and any hope of a real date.
Desperate, Cameron convinces his editor to host an artisanal ice cream contest in hopes of drawing out the elusive genius. But more complications threaten to intervene. Will Jay even enter the contest? Or will the chance of a happily ever after melt away?
World-class chef Joshua Golden is homesick for Paris before he even arrives in New York, but he’ll endure it—his parents need him to help run the family restaurant while his mother recovers from surgery. Running a place so far beneath his talents is bad enough, but bad turns to worse when Josh discovers his former best friend and lover, Micah Solomon, is living at his parents’ house with his ten-year-old son, Ethan.
For ten years, Josh has done his best to forget how Micah shattered his heart into tiny pieces. Now Micah’s back, fresh out of prison, and helping out at the restaurant. Micah may not be the kind of sous chef Josh is used to, but he is more helpful and supportive than any of the other employees. But Josh finds it hard to keep his distance when, time after time, Micah proves himself a better man than Josh thought. Reluctantly, Josh realizes there is more to Micah than his lousy life choices… but that doesn’t mean Josh is ready to forgive him.
[two_third_last]Simon Ford’s success is hard-won. He grew up in Napa and resents the rich people who have moved into the valley, changing the culture by opening boutique wineries and pricing the locals out of the market.
Austin Kelvin runs an award-winning winery his father started after making a fortune on Wall Street. He lives the posh lifestyle Simon resents but secretly longs to attain. However, Austin’s world isn’t as luxurious and privileged as it seems: he didn’t inherit his father’s business savvy, and his winery is going under.
When Simon’s boss sends him to covertly scope out Kelvin Cellars for a possible takeover bid, Simon sees it as a step toward attaining his financial dreams. Until he falls hard for Austin. The feeling is mutual, but when Austin learns the real reason for Simon’s initial interest, he suspects Simon’s seduction is merely a means to procure the winery at a bargain price. If there’s any hope of winning Austin’s heart, Simon will have to risk it all to prove Austin is more than just an intoxicating crush.
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It’s a week before Christmas and Alex Bancroft’s bakery goes up in flames. When he runs back inside to rescue a dog, firefighter Kevin Flint’s forced to follow Alex into the smoldering building, putting them all in danger and inflaming Kevin’s resentment.
With his kitchen destroyed Alex has no place to create the elaborate gingerbread house he auctions off each year for a charity benefitting foster kids, crediting it with saving his life a decade earlier. Then men of Fire Station 7 comes to his rescue yet again, offering the use their kitchen and their assistance.
Everyone but Kevin Flint, that is. A third-generation firefighter, he’s learned not to step too far out of the closet from his unsupportive father, the deputy fire chief, so he’s on constant alert against outing himself in the firehouse. But he can’t fight his powerful physical attraction, resulting in a sizzling secret encounter with Alex. Now Kevin can’t push Alex far enough away and Alex returns the cold shoulder.
After a change of heart, Kevin risks his life to prove he’s worthy of Alex’s affection, but without a Christmas miracle, their chances at sweet romance might go up in smoke.
Like all Delectable Series stories, Gingerbread Palace contains recipes used by the characters.
Burke Williams wasn’t planning on a vacation, but when his well-meaning sister lures him to the airport and hands him a plane ticket and a packed suitcase the day after he finishes a high-pressure programming project, he has little choice but to hop on the plane and go.
Never in his wildest dreams did he imagine a place like Cockatoo, a clothing-optional gay beach resort. For a guy more at home with a hard drive than happy hour, he feels like a fish out of water on the Caribbean island.
Only one other guy at the place seems to be enjoying it less than Burke: a handsome guy more interested in looking through his binoculars at the woods surrounding the resort than at the array of available Speedo-clad men laid out in rows of beach chairs, a veritable Smorgasbord of willing partners.
Stafford Nelson didn’t come to Cocaktoo to find a temporary bedmate, but he thinks geeky Burke sweet and charming, and they hit it off immediately. But when Burke discovers what Staff is really after, it might shipwreck their blossoming connection.