Title: Feel the Heat
Author: Kate Meader
Series: Hot in the Kitchen #1
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Forever (Grand Central Publishing)
Release Date: May 7, 2013
Source: eARC from the publisher via NetGalley
Jack Kilroy’s celebrity has left him feeling used and used up. While Lili’s oh-so-sexy moans when she tastes his delicious creations turn him on, he’s even more aroused by how unimpressed this beautiful, funny woman is with his fame. He knows they could be amazing together, if she could only see past his bitch fork-wielding fan base. Now as he’s about to start a new prime time TV cooking show, can Jack convince Lili to realize her own ambitions – and turn up the heat in his kitchen?
Jack Kilroy is the epitome of a self-made man. His empire, so to speak, is really the result not just of great talent, which he abundantly has, but also of great perseverance and will. Despite the absence of his father, whose later reappearance shattered whatever illusions Jack may have had of what his father should be, he was able to make it big back in the UK and is now taking the US by storm, especially now that he’s working to make it into national TV with his new cook-off show.
Lili De Luca is a photographer by heart but her mother’s bout with cancer has left her family in a tight spot not only emotionally but financially as well. When Cara, Lili’s older sister, was able to book their family’s struggling Italian restaurant as the site for the pilot episode of Jack Kilroy’s new TV series, Lili not only has to manage a cook-off between Jack and her father, she also has to battle the attraction that started simmering between her and Jack.
I love reading Lili’s and Jack’s story especially because they were really well-fleshed out characters. Their individual angsts are not too overpowering as to cast a shadow to who they are ultimately as a person. Kate Meader did a great job introducing them to the readers and as the story progresses so are the reader’s understanding of what their honest thoughts and true feelings are.
I love the running theme in the story about overcoming stereotypes and being the kind of person that you want to be instead of what other people might or should expect you to be. Jack, with his mostly unwarranted reputation of being a player or a ladies’ man and Lili, with her past issues about her weight and self-perception. Kate Meader also does a great job in presenting us with these issues. It was illuminating in the sense that we get to realize that not everything is what they seem and a person can be unjustly boxed in to a cookie-cutter stereotype and be branded to be a kind of person most of the time when in actuality, it isn’t the real them.
I love the energy that seems to burst from the pages of the books whenever Jack and Lili are together and this does not necessarily mean a love scene. I love their banters, their quick wits, the way that they challenge each other. I know that they have insecurities and not just about the physical aspects and Kate Meader writes this so well and it was just a great journey for me as a reader as I watched these characters overcome these in order for them to turn out as better people.
I also love the dynamics between and among the secondary characters as they interact with each other or with the main couple. I particularly like the dynamics of the De Luca clan and I’ve laughed out loud a couple of times just with the references to the Corleone family of the Godfather series. It was great to read about a not so perfect, but still functioning and loving family.
Kate Meader is now one of my auto-read authors. I actually read All Fired Up, the second book in this series, and just fell in love with it. Feel the Heat is an equally great reading experience and now I can’t wait to read the third book in the series, Hot and Bothered coming in March 2014.
About the Author:
Kate writes sexy contemporary romance that serves up to-die-for heroes and heroines with a dash of sass. Originally from Ireland, she cut her romance reader teeth on Catherine Cookson and Jilly Cooper novels, with some Mills & Boons thrown in for variety. Give her tales about brooding mill owners, oversexed equestrians, and men who can rock an apron, and she’s there. She has a bachelor’s in law (useless), a master’s in history (not as useless), and another master’s in library and information science (yay, using). When not writing about sexy men and the women who can match them quip for quip, she works in an academic library in Chicago.
Kate is represented by Nicole Resciniti at The Seymour Agency.
Connect with Kate Meader:
Other books in the series:
All Fired Up (Book #2) – Check out my review HERE.
Hot and Bothered (Book #3) – This one just got a cover and a blurb. Plus, Kate Meader gives us a little taste of what’s in store. You can go HERE to read Chapter One.