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  • Writer's pictureJulie Mackin

Kitchen Confidential

Best Served Hot by Amanda Elliot

Stars: 4

Spicy: PG, scenes are mostly behind closed doors

Will you like this book? You might if you like:

Enemies to Lovers

Descriptions of Food

Clumsy Heroines

Kitchen high jinks

I’ve been trying to listen to more fiction audiobooks, though tbh I am not sure why I am doing that. It just means I am not reading as much nonfiction, but whatever, guess that is a problem for another day. Listening to the audiobook, I feel like it might color my view of the characters, the tone and inflection the narrator uses, maybe not the same way that I would interpret it? It is not something I come across listening to history books. I’m not sure it is a bad thing, I’m just still trying to figure it out.

Regardless, I enjoyed this book by Elliot, it has a fun premise. Julie and Bennett are both food critics, but Julie’s is a side hustle on social media that she would like to translate into a full time job (with benefits and dental). What she really wanted was to be the food critic for the New York Scroll, but that went to Bennett Wright. When they first meet, sparks fly and Julie and Bennett obviously don’t see eye to eye on how to review food. But their “altercation” at a food festival causes both Julie and the New York Scroll’s subscriber numbers to jump, so Julie and Bennett find themselves reviewing places together from different perspectives for social media.

The story is fairly predictable for a rom-com, but there were some added elements that made it stand out. First, the descriptions of the food! It made me so hungry just listening to Julie talk about the various dishes. Second were the two subplots, one with Julie’s best friend, Alice, a computer programmer, and the other with Julie’s boss’ daughter, Emerson Lee. I thought these two elements elevated the book a bit and I wish that there might have been more of an examination of the issues they both raised. Or maybe each of these women will get their own books, which would be fantastic.

A fun read, just don’t read hungry!

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