ARC Review: A Teaspoon of Trouble by Shirley Jump

33832349Title: A Teaspoon of Trouble (Bachelor Bake-Off, #1)

Author: Shirley Jump

Publisher: Montana Born, Tule Publishing

Expected Publishing Date: February 7, 2017

Genre: Contemporary, Romance

Format: eBook

Rating: 2.75 Stars



Type-A chef Carolyn Henderson has walked away from her job at a trendy NYC restaurant after an abrupt family tragedy. Now, as a guardian to her four-year-old niece, Emma, and a very disobedient mutt – kids and dogs are so not her skill set – moving back to Marietta, Montana seems the best temporary option. But when confronted by her parents’ declining health, Carolyn has to face reality. And she’s going to need some serious help. So who better to ask than Matthew West, a blast from her high school past… and as hunky and helpful as ever.

Vet – and very eligible, if reluctant, Bachelor – Matthew West can’t believe his luck when his high school crush stumbles through his door. Dogs, kids, and gorgeous damsels in distress. Carolyn needs help with the pup, and he needs help whipping up delicious concoctions for the Bachelor Bake-Off. So she wants to make a deal: dog obedience lessons for cooking tips… but Matthew wants to broker quite a bit more…


♦ Personal Thought ♦

A Teaspoon of Trouble is part of Bachelor Bake-Off, a series penned by multiple authors set in Marietta, Montana.

This entry brought high-school sweetheart Carolyn Henderson and Matthew West back together after their split up at the school’s parking lot ten years ago. Matt was now one of the town’s small animals Vet and Carolyn a renowned sous-chef in Manhattan. She was only back in town to figure out what to do after her dead sister appointed her as guardian to her four year old niece.

I was set to love this story! Second chance romance, small town, cute kid and adorable puppy! There’s more than enough potential, right?? Unfortunately, after such promising start, as the story progressed I found myself disliking the character. Make that characterS, as Matt was almost as bad as Carolyn in some cases.

The story was told in alternate POVs from both character’s view. The good thing about Matt was that he’s the kind of guy who didn’t hold grudge and saw things in positive way. From his eyes, Carolyn sounded almost like an okay woman, struggling with her own grief yet trying her best in a difficult situation. However, Carolyn’s own POV gave me impression that she was a callous and selfish person. Her parents were no help; in fact they left me thinking: no wonder she turned out like this the way her parents treated her.

So yeah, this first entry to Bachelor Bake-Off series was not much of a success for me. Not a total bust, as there’s still heart-wrenching or adorable moments here and there involving the kid and puppy; and the writing is far from bad. I guess, after a while, I just got tired of Carolyn’s hot and cold attitude toward Matt and her unclear plan for the future. Personally, I think this story could be trimmed into shorter pages as to alienate boredom from said endless hot and cold. And perhaps work on the ending a bit. As much as I like the ending – yes, that last few pages did lift up a bit of a point from me – it could tweak a bit better, imho.

Advanced copy of this book is kindly provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

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