Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Guest Blogger: Louisa Edwards (with giveaway)

Recipe for Love trilogy wraps with Just One Taste

First, I want to thank Patti and the gang at Romance Reviews Today for having me here, and for giving my newest culinary romance, Just One Taste, the coveted Perfect 10 rating! I may or may not have your entire review memorized.

With the release of Just One Taste, Recipe for Love readers finally get the conclusion of the Market trilogy I began with Can’t Stand the Heat and On the Steamy Side, while brand new readers are introduced to the band of misfits and renegades who make up the kitchen crew at trendy Manhattan restaurant, Market.

As a reader, I love trilogies; the way the stories connect and build, the way the characters grow and deepen—it definitely enhances the reading experience for me. As a writer, I enjoy writing trilogies because it gives me the chance to stretch subplots over several books and play with extended story arcs, and I get to revisit a world and a group of characters who are as real to me, by the third book, as most of my friends!

In Can’t Stand the Heat, we met Chef Adam Temple and his merry band of outlaws, who all had to deal with the fallout when Adam dared a snarky food critic, Miranda Wake, to spend a week in his kitchen. On the Steamy Side brought more delicious drama, as celebrity chef Devon Sparks learned how to love life and food again, with the help of his son’s sassy Southern nanny, Lilah Jane Tunkle. And Just One Taste…well, here’s the blurb from the back of the book:

He has a hungry mind.

Bad-boy chef Wes Murphy dreads his final semester cooking class—Food Chemistry 101—until he meets the new substitute teacher. Dr. Rosemary Wilkins is a feast for the eyes, though her approach to food is strictly academic. So Wes decides to rattle her Bunsen burner by asking for her hands-on advice—on aphrodisiacs . . .

She’s got love down to a science.

Rosemary is a little wary about working with Wes, whose casual flirtations leave her hot under the collar. But once they begin testing the love-enhancing power of chocolate, oysters, and strawberries, it becomes scientifically evident that the brainy science nerd and the boyish chef have some major chemistry together—and it’s delicious . . .

I know some readers hesitate to jump in when a series is already several books underway, while others love to start at the beginning and obsessively read them all in order (guilty as charged!). And some readers prefer trilogies, neatly contained in three books, to a long, sprawling epic series that can spin off forever.

What about you? Do you like connected stories, and if so, do you feel the need to start with the first book? Or do you prefer that every book stands completely alone, with no appearances by the author’s previous characters?

While my books are connected and are set in the same world, each one can absolutely be read as a complete story, in and of itself. Still, in solidarity with those of you who like to read trilogies in order, I’m offering the entire trilogy (signed, of course) to one lucky commenter!

Learn more about Louisa by visiting her website at can view the Perfect 10 review of JUST ONE TASTE by clicking here.


Maureen said...

Congratulations on your new book and the perfect 10 review! I really enjoy Top Chef and the series looks like a fun combination of cooking and romance.

Patti (@TheLoveJunkee) said...

Congrats on your latest release - this is a series I've been enjoying very much!

I like connected stories but I've got to start with Book 1 and can't skip any.

aromagik said...

I love connected stories, and I almost always start at the beginning and read in order. I'm addicted to the Food Network and I've heard great things about this trilogy!


Laurie G said...

I haven't read any of your books yet. I have read some excellent reviews and would love to win your series!!

I love watching the Food Network channel. They make cooking appear so easy to do and fun too!
I love Ina, Giada, Tyler, Rachael and Paula!

I like the idea of cooking and romance they definitely go well together!

Lets see: Series books they must be able to stand alone, so that I don't have to read them in order. I like the connected people to have a small cameo tie-in role in the new book. I like connected books . I like the familiarity. It's as if you're coming home again and you know some of the town's people or part of the family.

Just One taste sounds like a cute,scrumptious read. I like the heat that's building between Wes and Rosemary!!

Fedora said...

Hi, Louisa!! I do love connected stories and have a strong preference to read them in order; if I can resist, I actually prefer to wait until I have the entire trilogy and then devour the whole thing in one fell swoop. (Of course, sometimes that's just too hard to hold off!) I have occasionally started a series with not-the-first book, and when I figure it out, have to seek out the rest and reread in order. I definitely prefer when the previous characters make an appearance--it's part of the pleasure of getting to know an author's universe for her series and I love the feeling of getting to catch up with those characters I've already gotten to know. That said, I prefer that each story be a complete one--I don't have a fondness for cliffhangers or story arcs that span more than one book. Your trilogy sounds RIGHT up my alley--how can one go wrong with food and books? (Two of my very favorite things ;))

Congrats on book three, Louisa!

What do you have planned next? Any more in this setting?

debbie said...

I like connected series. I have picked up a book, and then went back and started from the beginning,too. I enjoy seeing how the characters evolve and interact with each other. The added bonus of cooking just adds them to my favorite list.

CrystalGB said...

Hi Louisa. I like connected books. I prefer to start at the beginning of a series and read them in order. Your books sound amazing.

Karen H said...

Hi Louisa,

Your trilogy sounds yumm-o! I think I would enjoy reading your books. I love connected books and will usually never start reading until I have all books in the series in hand. I'm a little OCD that way...ok a lot!

Louisa Edwards said...

Maureen - Thanks! And Top Chef is totally my favorite, too. : )

Patti - The later books in the series just mean more, don't they, if you start at the beginning?

aromagik - Aw, thanks for saying you've heard great things. They're all true! LOL ; )

Laurie - Good point! Even with connected books, they should each be able to stand alone as a full, satisfying story.

flchen1 - I don't mind a subplot story arc that spans more than one book, although I don't usually enjoy cliffhangers, either way. There are definitely more culinary romances coming up from me--in Fall 2011, a back-to-back trilogy about a high-stakes culinary competition!

Debbie - Glad the combo of food and romance works for you!

CrystalGB - Thanks for commenting!

Karen H - Well, all three books in the Market trilogy are out--now's your chance!

Linda Marie Dershem said...

Though I do like to read a series in order, I've found that the romance genre especially can have multiple books under one series but can be read in whatever order. The only problem with that is if a reference is made as a nod to another couple in a previous book gets lost. :P

LSUReader said...

I like connected books and prefer that they are contained enough to be read as stand-alones. I don’t have to start with the first, but guarantee if I like the first book I read, I’ll go back and read the whole series. The thing I really like about a series with a specific end (be it three books or more) is that the series never seems to drag. The author has an end in mind and gets us there. Sometimes a series goes on too long and the author flounders around without a specific goal. That’s generally when I stop reading. Thanks for visiting.

Anonymous said...

Hi Louisa,

I love connected stories. After all, if I loved the first book, more time with the characters is always a great thing!

Let's face it, I'm big on eating. How could I help but fall in love with a series about the adventures in a restaurant?

Congratulations on your new release, and I look forward to reading it!

Linda Henderson said...

I love connected books. It's so nice to see the first characters show up in later books, you get to see what's going on in their lives. They are really my favorite kinds of stories. Stand alone series are great too. I have been known to wait until I get all of them to read them one after the other.

runner10 said...

Hi Louisa,
I like series where the characters reappear in the books. I prefer to start with book 1.
I have read On The Steamy Side. I must say it was great and would love to read the rest of the series!!

chey said...

Congrats on your new release!
I like connected stories that can also stand alone (because I rarely find them in order!) I'm more likely to read them as I find them than waiting until I have them all.

Louisa Edwards said...

Linda Marie - I agree--when books are connected, even if they stand alone, you can get more out of them if you read in order.

LSUReader - Very good point! Maybe that's what's so appealing about trilogies; there's a clear story arc in mind, there.

strategerie - If you like a little food with your romance, you just might enjoy my books...

Linda Henderson - So interesting how many readers say that they like to wait until the series is finished before starting it! I almost never have the self-discipline. : )

runner10 - Thanks for the nice words about OtSS! Hope you enjoy the others if you ever get a chance to try them.

chey - It can be hard to find them all in order, if you're just poking around a bookstore or something. Thank goodness for online retailers!

Kiersten said...

I like series a lot, especially when I connect strongly with the characters. One book doesn't seem enough then; I want more of them. If I pick up a book mid-series and like it, chances are I'll go and suss out the rest of the series. Hell, even if I don't like it, often I'll get the others because I HAVE TO KNOW. It's a compulsion; I'm seeing someone for it. ;-)

Anonymous said...

I love, love, love to read series. When I get to THE END I'm always a little sad, and a series enables me to live on in that world just a little longer. However, I think my favorite thing is why an author "spins off" with a secondary characters. Maybe one they weren't even expected to be so good. That's awesome.

I always start with the first book. I like to know everything there is to know, but it is very nice when an author can make them all stand-alones. Just in case I can't get the first one.

Chelsea B. said...

I like connected stories and stand alones. I'm flexable like that ;-) But when it comes to connected, I definitely like to start with the first book :-)

Johanna R Jochum said...

I like series. I love following different characters throughout the series and seeing how they grow and intertwine with the stories. I try to start with the start of series but sometimes Ill pick up a book thats the last or in the middle of a series and if I like it I'll go and buy the rest. These books look great they have been on my list to get for awhile now. Thanks for sharing!

tetewa said...

Sounds like a fun series, count me in!

Estella said...

I love series! I need to start with book 1.

This series sounds like a fun read.

Louisa Edwards said...

Kiersten - That's not a bad compulsion to have! Don't ever change. : )

Posey - Spinoffs are great! Such a fun way to explore a world and a cast of characters.

Chelsea - It's good to be flexible!

Johanna - If my books ever make it from your TBB list to your TBR list, I hope you enjoy them! LOL

Tetewa - Thanks!

Estella - Thank you for commenting!

Anonymous said...

Hi! Congrats on your new release and the perfect 10 rating!

I, too, enjoy connected books. Once I like a book, it's as if I'm visiting with the characters in the sequels, peeking in after their HEA. Although I prefer to read a series in sequence, many times the latest book is what catches my eye and if I really like it, I'll read the beginning ones. Of course, for many series I may jump around, looking for the book about the characters I like.

Another plus in romance is that the lag time between books in a series isn't that great. For example, for one children's book series, the lag between book 2 and book 3 was nine years!

I also love to watch Food Network shows so this series has been on my TBB list for a while (although I must admit that since it's a trilogy, I have been waiting for the entire trilogy to be out before getting the books).


limecello said...

Hiiiii Louisa. I love the cover of Just One Taste- my favorite of the three, I think :)
As for connected books - I like them as long as it's finite. Never ending "series" are a pet peeve for me, and it's generally an exception where I'm ok with a book not standing alone. It has been known to happen once or twice. (But only once or twice.)
I don't mind cameo appearances, nor does it bother me to read out of order. At this point, however, it's almost impossible to find a book that does stand entirely alone.
Love that your three can be stand alone - it's fun that way because then seeing the characters from previous books is a little like seeing an old friend. Although... not in the creepy way.

And congratulations on the great review :D

Scorpio M. said...

Count me in as a fan of trilogies and interconnected stories. It just makes a reader grow more attached and feeds the need for more! I love anticipating the 'next' installment. =)

jenma76 at hotmail dot com

Agatha P. Townsend said...

I also like trilogies,which you just finished Louisa and I loved each one, I love cooking so made connection with me, I also watch Top Chef, books that start with one character or two but you learn about their friends, room mates, best friends, neighbors, or triplets, etc. I like they connect in some way, that way when I start second book, know the reason of who they are somewhat not all their histories or loves. They could be sisters, anyways a connection. I always want to start with first one and end with the third like with Wes, Louisa' you know how and have proven with your first series that you are a great writer that holds our interest, you know how hard it was for me waiting for third book, but I did.The guys I like are quiet or a little bit different or shy even.Anyways please get back to your writing! 2011 is far enough away for me to read your next one!


Sherry said...

I love reading connected stories. This seems like it would be a great series to read.

donnas said...

Congrats on the new release. I love connected series like this. I always want to know more about the secondary characters and I never want to let go of the settings.

Paranormal and Romantic Suspense Reviews said...

Congrats on your new release, Louisa!

I love connected series and I like to start with the first book. I like to read about secondary characters too!

I've been wanting to read this trilogy since I've seen them previewed and read great reviews on them.

Caffey said...

Hi Louisa! Beautiful on the reviews! They do sound perfect! I'm a pure book alcoholic! I love those connected books and love to read them in order. I hate to miss anything! I will be reading a book and read a couple in it and wonder 'was there a book before this of their story?!' LOL. I love when they all get their happily ever after!

cathiecaffey @

Anonymous said...

congratsn ont eh books such cute covers
love series books
i read them in order

kim h

throuthehaze said...

I definitely love connected stories and prefer to read them in order :)
throuthehaze at gmail dot com

Leah Abshire - said...


I absoultely love your books - the Market trilogy and it was great to see some interconnected stories in them also!

As for reading series, it would not matter where I start except in this series- there were some stories that we would need to know by starting in the beginning (Frankie and Jess, for example).

I hope you do a spinoff books or add to the series though with some characters such as Violet or Christian! Either way, I'm excited to read your upcoming books in 2011!