Boone Walton has tried hard to create some distance between himself and his past. He's invested in his new life, his New Orleans art gallery, and his friendship with Scott Wren. Things finally seem to be settling down to normal, and Boone couldn't be happier.
Chef Scott Wren wants much more than normal with Boone. He wants to raise things to the next level, but Boone is terrified - and not because of the ghost in Scott's apartment or Scott's relatives. No, Boone's past is about to pay him a visit, and the only thing that can get between Boone, Scott, and a hinky recipe for chocolate mousse found in a curious cookbook is the river of pain Boone had to swim across to get to this side of The Big Easy. There's a secret behind the ingredients, though - one that might reveal the trust and love that have been missing from Boone's life.
©2015 Mary Calmes (P)2015 Dreamspinner Press
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"A great short story"
This is a great short story with a lot packed into it. Greg Tremblay’s incredible narration is just the whipped cream on this fabulous confection.
I enjoyed (and there was maybe a tear or two for) Boone’s back story in Japan, which made me see why he had been reticent to pursue a relationship with Scott.
I also loved the way it was left open for his pseudo little brother, Satoru, to maybe have his own story. *hint, hint*
As an aside, only Mary Calmes could have two men who have been sleeping around with multiple different partners for years throw away the condom for their first time and say they’re doing it bare without getting tested or already having test results and not have me lose my mind. Well, only Mary Calmes and Cardeno C.
Also, for those of us nerds: I love “Easter eggs” in movies or when a book references another character or series…and we get that here!
I absolutely LOVE Boone got some of his ink at Hizoku Ink, Ichi’s Shop from Rhys Ford’s novels, which ties in perfectly to the shout out Rhys gave Mary Calmes at the end of Dirty Deeds. Anyway…I’m a nerd and it’s awesome.
"Is There a Sequel in the Offing Here?"
Tails of the Curious Cookbook is the series name for an anthology of five short stories by five great writers. The writers, R.J. Scott, Amy Lane, Marie Sexton, Amber Kell, and Mary Calmes have written vastly different M/M romance stories with the unifying theme of a curious cookbook entitled Recipes for the Heart subtitled Mystical Meals and Dangerous Desserts hand written by the anonymous Granny B. The stories come in either a Kindle e-book or audible format. The cookbook is depicted as very old, tattered, faded, leather bound, and rich with notations from its users adding clarifying notations and reactions to the varies magical recipes. The recipes when prepared and served is intended to aid in sorting out some confusing romance aspect of the stories or make one feel better after a broken heart. These books will appeal to those with a romantic soul and believe in the magic of comfort food served with a side of the power of suggestion of magic.
I have written five separate reviews for each of the five stories. Please refer to the list below when looking up the appropriate review:
1. For a Rainy Afternoon by R.J. Scott
2. Food for Thought by Amy Lane
3. Lost Along the Way by Marie Sexton
4. Cookies for Courting by Amber Kell
5. Just Desserts by Mary Calmes
Just Desserts: Tails of the Curious Cookbook by Mary Calmes narrated by Grieg Tremblay. Boone Walton is the self-made respected business man in America haunted by a grief of loss from a past life in Japan as an assumed son of a powerful Japanese underworld godfather. Chef Scott Wren is a successful restaurateur and best friend Boone, pining for Boone to see the longing for love he has for Boone. Until that day happens Scott dates one after another frivolous suitors much to Boone’s irritation.
The story is set in New Orleans complete with Scott living in a ghost haunted apartment. Scott is seeking a signature dessert for his restaurant when Granny B’s cook book appears as part purchase of a decorative antique stove by Boone for Scott’s restaurant. Scott finds Granny B’s recipe for chocolate mousse for lovers. He tries it out at a dinner party for six including the Doctor Scott is currently dating. It tastes terrible to the Doctor but is ambrosia to Boone. Following the dessert Boone finally sees Scott and his unrequited love only to have to face the unresolved issues with his past from Japan.
The ending even sets up a potential sequel should the author care to expand on the idea of Boone’s dead lover’s younger brother coming to America following the impending death of the Japanese godfather who is Boone’s pseudo father figure from his youth. Could Boone rescue this pseudo half sibling from being consumed by the pressures of his pseudo father’s crime syndicate and being destroyed like his first lover was?
Grieg Tremblay is one of my favorite narrators. He does a first class job of this first person prospective story. He breathes life and attitude into the character of Boone and his view of his friends and associates around him. He makes the book a great listen in a way that reading it would not be nearly as satisfying.
"Definitely an entertaining read!"
Oh hell yes! I love the merging of Calmes writing and Tremblay's voice.
Scott. He was this real life energizer bunny and I loved that Tremblay conveyed that when voicing him.
Boone. I want to see those tattoos.
Boone Walton lives his life inside a box. A painful past full of misery, loss and death caused Boone to lock his heart away, never really letting anyone get close enough to feel the sting of betrayal or hurt again. When Scott Wren walks into Boone’s gallery, all bets are off. Boone is instantly taken with the adorable, blonde Chef that is both lively and exuberant. But he keeps Scott firmly slated in the friends zone, unwilling to ever give his heart to another man and chance it being shattered.
Boone nurses Scott through break-up after break-up, knowing that he wants to be the other man in Scott’s life, but terrified to admit it. It’s not until someone shows a serious interest in Boone that Scott finally says enough and tries to stake his claim to his big, brooding, aloof best friend. Then right about the time it looks like good things come to those who wait, Boone’s past pays him a visit and the outcome could be disastrous.
This little novella was jam packed with content let me just say. There is love, lust, silly shenanigans, a yakuza connection, magical mousse and a saucy ghost that has not only taken up residence in Scott’s apartment… she has taken quite a liking to Boone and will be damned if any other man will lay claim to Scott. Add to that the intricate writing of Mary Calmes and the multi-tonal voicing of Greg Tremblay and what you have is a can’t miss audio book. I really enjoyed the flow of the story and how each new piece slowly revealed itself over time. When you finally learn the truth of Boone’s past, why he is so guarded with his heart, it will break yours. As usual, Tremblay gave each character a voice to match their personalities. Boone is this big, brooding, secretive guy and you can hear that in his voice. Then you have Scott who is the real life energizer bunny and that characteristic is completely conveyed in his tones and nuances.
It’s Mary Calmes and Greg Tremblay, that should be reason enough to trot right over to audible and grab a copy. This was just a fast, fun, emotional and completely engaging read for me.
"Mary Calmes + Greg Tremblay = A Winning Combo"
I soooooooooo enjoyed this audiobook. I laughed. I cried. I sighed. This, for me, was just EVERYTHING good. I was hesitant buying this because it was less than 3 hours long and … seriously … how much plot and character development can happen in that short time? Well, for Mary Calmes – a lot! What brilliant storytelling!
Mary Calmes + Greg Tremblay = A WINNING COMBINATION. What an amazing performance by Greg.
I lost sleep last night because I made the mistake of being curious about the audio as I tumbled into bed a little after midnight. BIG MISTAKE! HUGE MISTAKE! I had to finish; it was that good.
Loved the guys’ chemistry and easy friendship. LOVED LOVED LOVED it. Great, likeable guys.
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED. ☺
I loved this story so much in fact the whole series of these beautiful bits of fancy are both magical and so heartwarming that they will have you weeping at the sweet belonging each couple finds. All with the help of Nana B.
Scott and Boone are beautifully rendered and so sweet together that you are left to marvel at how long it took them to come together. They are in a word sublime.
The narration is to die for and as is always the case story and narrator marry in a way that will leave you breathless. Buy them all and indulge you whimsy. You won't be sorry you did.
"Great duo Mary and Greg!"
Boone’s heart was broken years ago and he hasn’t let anyone in since. His buddy, Scott, captures his interest, but he’s a player and Boone can’t risk that kind of hurt again.
When it finally looks like the player might settle down, Boone realizes he can’t let Scott go to someone else and together they embark on the relationship both had been pining for, for years.
This is another wonderful Mary Calmes love story, full of clueless MCs, tough guys, friendship, laughter, well structured secondary characters and hot sex. Add to it the Yakuza, NOLA and some amazing chocolate mousse and you have Just Desserts!
Greg Tremblay has done it again. He is such an amazing performer! He always adds to the story and brings it to life.
"Love the storyline of the book"
I have read a couple books with this storyline and I loved them and good work making them
Wow! I fell so in love with the Japanese part of this tale. All I can keep thinking is, what an amazing heart wrenching story that would have been. I mean, the Yakuza, family honor, step brothers, forbidden love, betrayal, loss, - groans- everything that would make a memorial story.
But we got this story, and as much as I love Scott, I so want that Hiro love story.
Honestly, that little piece of a story truly made this story for me. I do wish it was Finn Sterling or Sean Crisden who narrator end this but Greg Tremblay speaking in Japanese was a treat.
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