Former Navy SEAL Lucas Chaffee is settling back into civilian life, refurbishing a farmhouse for an old friend who plans to turn it into a culinary school. Celebrity TV chef Madeline Durand has been publicly humiliated by a philandering husband. So Madeline jumps at the chance to return to Shelter Bay to recover and help her grandmother turn the family farm into a new business.
Little does she know that the man who broke her heart years ago is already on the job-or that he's going to cook up a recipe of passion, patience, and perseverance to win her over.
This tear-jerking tale of a commitment-shy professional cook learning to love a former Navy SEAL in idyllic rural Oregon, the third in Ross's Shelter Bay series (after One Summer and The Homecoming), may ring familiar bells for readers of Christina Skye's A Home by the Sea, but Ross's concern with social issues like spousal abuse and post-traumatic stress broadens this savory romance into more substantial literary fare. Madeline Durand is a dedicated hands-on devotee of organic food and down-home recipes produced with passion and soul. As a teenager, Maddy had an awful falling-out with delectably hunky Lucas Chaffee, but when the two reconnect as adults, his determination to marry her gradually gets her off the treadmill she'd been on and into a knee-weakening burst of lust. The busybodies of Shelter Bay are more than happy to support the two as they slowly make their way toward happiness.