Reviewed by Allison
Dulcie Carter grew up tasting, creating, and surrounded by candy. So it only made sense to keep her mother's legacy and dream alive by taking over Candy Land Confections, her mother's homemade candy store, when she passed away. The only thing is, dreams don't come cheap. Between rent, supplies, and lukewarm patronage, Dulcie has some hard decisions she has to make about the future of the store.
Nick Sugarman (yes, that really is his last name!) is the heir to the throne of How Sweet It Is - Dulcie's competition. However, as much as Nick enjoys eating candy, he doesn't feel all that inspired to make it. He prefers the complex textures and tastes of the cupcakes (where can I get one of him?!) that he loves to bake all the time. However, he feels set on taking over the family business and is willing to do what it takes to prove to his father he is worthy of the store. No matter how automated and impersonal it has become.
When Dulcie goes out for a jazz concert and drinks with her bestie, Nick catches her eye and they start to chat. It's a crazy cute scene...until they find out just who the other is. Nick ends up baiting her about a contest, the Assembly of Chocolatiers yearly competition, something that Candy Land has always entered and done well in until the year she did it alone. In which she failed miserably. Another is coming up and he can't help but tell her all about how amazing his entry (that he hasn't come up with yet) is bound to be. The gauntlet is thrown! After much thought and trepidation, Dulcie decides that she's willing to do anything to save her mother's shop...including swallow her fear in hopes that she might have a chance at winning the prize money in the Chocolatiers competition.
I loved all the characters in this book, they were so well done. From the crazy but fun Grandma, the supportive but wacky best friend, to the savvy homeless girl out back who ends up saving the day. And Nick! He was adorably endearing - he wasn't some cool hot guy that knew all the right things to say to get into a girls pants. He was the sexy guy who knows it, but doesn't have a clue how to use it. He would say something out loud then curse himself silently for being the opposite of smooth. He was such a good guy! You can't help but hope he gets the girl.
Chemistry-wise there was nothing more than a few kisses, but the plot surrounding the characters and the competition more than make up for it - I got so wrapped up in the story that I hardly noticed.
It was incredibly sweet and I'm glad I read it! When you finish the book you'll have "I want candy" playing in your head, a smile on your face, and a hardcore itch to eat chocolate! Now to go try those recipes she tortured me with at the end...
Click to purchase: Amazon
Sugar Rushby Rachel AstorRelease Date: August 25, 2012Publisher: Bliss