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Beauty and The Best (Once-Upon-A-Time Romance Book 1) [Kindle Edition]

Judi Fennell
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $12.99
Kindle Price: $4.99
You Save: $8.00 (62%)

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Book Description

Can she cook up the perfect recipe for love?

Jolie Gardener, personal chef by day, aspiring romance writer by night, likes to talk and does it a lot. She has to because if she stops, all the pain, disillusionment, and abandonment of her AWOL mother, question-mark father, and foster-care childhood will rise up like a chocolate soufflé on steroids, sweeping away the fragile infrastructure of her life.
But she's fine. Really. She is.
Or so she thinks.

Todd Best isn't fine. He knows it. And doesn't care.
After his wife died—the woman who believed in him when he was a struggling artist—he put painting aside, moved from their home, and lost himself in the minutiae of daily life.
Alone. Private. The way he likes it.
The last thing he needs is some chatty cook seeping into the perfectly bland canvas of his life.
Or so he thinks.

So when Jonathan, a guardian-angel-in-training, turns himself into a kitten to help these two lonely souls find a happily ever after together, it ought to be a piece of cake.
Or so he thinks…

Praise for Judi Fennell’s stories:

"Fun and flirty. Judi Fennell will make you believe in … the magic of happily ever after." ~ Jennifer Estep, USA Today best-selling author

"Readers will adore the joy and humor and romance from Judi Fennell's creative pen." ~ Jill Barnett, New York Times best-selling author

“Fennell’s light and lively writing is full of humor and cleverness.” ~ Publishers Weekly, 9/15/11

Editorial Reviews


"I had a smile on my face and a sigh of contentment. Beauty and The Best is a happy-go-lucky, sweet, simple romance. The tale is light-hearted but full of emotion. The story stirred in me feelings of falling in love all over again. It was just downright enjoyable to read!"  -Jenn, That's What I'm Talking About

"Phenomenally written novel... One of the best stories I have read this year, and I highly recommend it to anyone who loves a happy ending!
-Sizzling Hot Books 5 Hearts

"Full of love, emotion and help from "Boots", you will fall in love with BEAUTY AND THE BEST. (Judi) is a fantastic author with the ability to keep you laughing and crying at the same time while glued to every word."
-Kay, Quintin, Fresh Fiction

"An engaging and hilarious book."
-Mimi Smith, InD'tale Magazine

About the Author

PRISM Award and Golden Leaf Award-winning author, Judi Fennell, has had her nose in a book and her head in some celestial realm all her life, including those early years when her mom would exhort her to “get outside!” instead of watching Bewitched or I Dream of Jeannie on television. So she did—right into Dad’s hammock with her Nancy Drew books. These days she’s more likely to have her nose in her laptop and her head (and the rest of her body) at her favorite writing spot, but she’s still reading, whether it be her latest manuscript or friends’ books. Author of “fairy tales with a twist,” pun-filled, tongue-in-cheek, contemporary paranormal romances, starting with the Tritone Trilogy about Mermen and the Humans who love them, her Bottled Magic Series about genies and magic and falling in love, and now her Once-Upon-A-Time Romances, those twisted fairy tales that were the inspiration for her tagline, "fairy tales with a twist." Dive into the romance on her website,, for excerpts, deleted scenes, reviews, contests, and pictures from reader and writer conferences.

Product Details

  • File Size: 922 KB
  • Print Length: 298 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1475162383
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Judi Fennell; 1 edition (April 6, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007S5PV4A
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #204,821 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Amazing Twisted Fairy Tale ! April 14, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
I remember the ripples this book caused after it splashed BIG on the contest circuit after Judi introduced these characters to the world. What?!!?? A naked man wanders into the kitchen where the chef-for-hire heroine is cooking...on page ONE? Another fun read!Beauty and The Best (Once-Upon-A-Time Romance)
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another great book from Judi Fennell April 18, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
Once again, Judi Fennell has written a perfect romance. Her characters are well developed and interact beautifully with one another. The story line was incredibly believable. I instantly fell in love with Jolie and Todd and cheered their successes and cried for their sadness. I have read all of her other books and this one is right up there with the rest. In fact, I can say this is my favorite and I cannot wait to read the others in the series. This is a must-read for fans of fantasy romance, you won't be disappointed.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This was one of those books I found hard to put down and the characters hard to stop thinking about once I finished the book. Jolie and Todd's relationship starts off a bit rocky, but they grow, both as individuals and as a couple. Ms Fennell is an auto buy for me. I love her humor and the strength of her characters. If you haven't read Beauty and the Best, you're missing a wonderful story.Beauty and The Best (Once-Upon-A-Time Romance)
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A grown-up kind of fairytale July 21, 2012
By lnp416
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
As young girls we are told fairytales. I remember listening to the tale of Sleeping Beauty via record while following along with the companion book. We have all watched, listened to, read or heard some variation of the tale of Cinderella, Snow White, Sleeping Beauty and Beauty and the Beast and (of course through the creativity of Disney) countless other princesses. They have graced our lives with their heroing stories of evil step-parents, sea enchants, monsters, poison, inability to speak, curses, and so on. We watched (or listened) as they and their prince/ hero over came the obstacles that were placed before them. It didn't hurt that most of the time they had a fairy godparent/angel/bug (something magical) lending a hand or a wing..heehee!! In the end of all of the stories the princesses were always rescued by the brave prince/hero...and as the times changed so did our princesses...they began to rescue themselves with the help and support of their beloved.

As we (the little girls) grow up, we remember our cherished fairytales fondly but the evil step-parents, poison apples, and wicked witches are no longer the things that we fear most. I mean, sure, we use them as metaphors and as references when trying to explain to friends how bad things seem to be..but they are no longer the worst things life has to offer. Today, we worry about losing our home because we still can't find work...we lose sleep because we are awaiting test results and praying that they are negative for (insert disease here)...we wait up pacing waiting for our kids to arrive home safely because they are late for curfew... we are waiting with baited breath for our husbands, wives, sons, and daughters to come home from battle over seas...
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Refreshingly happy love story June 17, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
My Rating: 4 stars: Enjoyed - strongly recommend (A-)

What a wonderful, refreshing, happy story! Right from the start I was in love with the hero, Todd Best. A lonely, depressed man who lost his wife two years ago, he has all but given up on life and the will to continue his work (a famous artist) and even to feed himself. His concerned family has hired different personal chefs to help him over the past two years, and now Jolie is starting the task. On her first morning, Todd stumbles into the kitchen, hungover and naked. Instead of being arrogant and cocky as we would expect a famous man to be, we learn from Todd's inner monologue that he is embarrassed by his actions.

Jolie has had a tough life - alcoholic mom, never knew her dad, in and out of foster homes. She's seen it all, but she has managed to make the most of her life and to rise above the circumstances. Yet there is a price to her success - she has shut out almost everyone, scare to be hurt and let down again. She won't let her emotions get hold and allow herself to hope.

Early on we learn of Jolie's plans to author a romance novel. She hopes to use Todd as inspiration for her hero, Tom. I was on edge and cringing knowing that a fictional exposé of Todd's life--a man who loves and protects his privacy--will not end well. I just hated knowing that Jolie is going to get hurt for her innocent book aspirations. From the first mention of the book in this story, I could see the misunderstandings, hurt feelings, etc. that were to come. And while I knew a confrontation would come, I understood the couple would have to go through it to move beyond their pasts.

Todd and Jolie have some help when it comes to the romance department.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun, Sweet and Sexy April 23, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
There is something special about a Judi Fennell book. It is funny, sweet, and turns a romance novel and fairytale into so much more.

Her characters catch you, and she brings you right into their thoughts, fears, hopes and dreams. Jolie and Todd work so well together in this story.

They feel real, and their growing feelings touch you. Judi sprinkles in just the right amount of sincerity, humor, magic, love, sensuality, and a quality I can only describe as Disney-esque to make a good story fantastic, and she makes pure magic with her writing.

If you were hoping for a summary, this isn't the review for you. Personally, I don't like to read someone telling about specifics in a book because I want to unwrap the story and experience it on my own, so I don't put that in my comments.

If you are looking for a witty, fun and light romance that will restore your faith in happily ever after and put a bounce in your step after reading, pick up any Judi Fennell book. If you are looking for a book that takes you thru a modern day fairytale that leaves you completely satisfied, makes you laugh, makes you cry and overall makes you "Beauty and the Best".
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More About the Author

Judi Fennell has had her nose in a book and her head in some celestial realm all her life, including those early years when her mom would exhort her to "get outside!" instead of watching Bewitched or I Dream of Jeannie on television. So she did--right into Dad's hammock with her Nancy Drew books.

These days she's more likely to have her nose in her laptop and her head (and the rest of her body) at her favorite bookstore, but she's still reading, whether it be her latest manuscript or friends' books.

PRISM and Golden Leaf Award winner and ARe best-selling author, Judi loves to hear from her readers. Check out her website ( for excerpts, reviews, contests and pictures from reader and writer conferences, as well as the chance to "dive in" to her stories.

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