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Too Hot To Touch (Recipe for Love) Mass Market Paperback – August 2, 2011

4.2 out of 5 stars 34 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


Too Hot to Touch is a satisfying, emotional and touching read.” ―Read, React, Review

“I can see that this series is going to be another keeper on my shelves. A great start to this new foodie series, it makes me want to learn to cook...almost.” ―Smitten with Reading

“Edwards always amazes me with her descriptions in the kitchen and food. Be sure to read this book on a full stomach, or else the hunger pains might get ya!” ―The Book Pushers

“Jules and Max scorch the pages…very well written characters with flaws, issues and depth.” ―Badass Book Reviews

“I loved this book. It was funny, sexy, the love story was touching, and the characters were likeable. As a fan of contemporary romance, this is exactly what I'm looking for when I buy a book. I can't wait to read the next installment. This one is a keeper so don't waste more time and go get it!” ―Romance Around The Corner

“If you like food, televised food shows (especially the popular Bravo series "Top Chef") and books with happy endings, you're in for a treat.” ―Go San Angelo Standard Times

“Scorching romance and delicious passions ignite behind the scenes of a high-stakes culinary competition. Today's hottest chefs vie for fame, fortune . . . and each other's hearts.” ―Fresh Fiction

“Yowza! There's nothing like romance in the kitchen to get juices pumping and hearts pounding, especially when the writing sizzles like it does in Edwards' latest.” ―All About Romance

“Every woman who's made the painful discovery that great sex is not enough to make a man realize he's in love will sympathize. Too Hot to Touch flips the power balance.” ―BN.com Romance Reviews

“I enjoyed the banter between all the characters. We get a little hint as to who Danny's heroine will be as his book will pick up where this one leads off. It's overall an enjoyable read, and I'll be picking up Danny's book when it comes out.” ―Happily Ever After Reads

“The third addition to Edwards' contemporary, culinary-based love stories is a rare treat that is certain to satisfy readers with its delectable combination of lusciously sensuous romance and irresistibly clever writing.” ―Booklist on JUST ONE TASTE

“Laugh-out-loud funny, Just One Taste was a surprisingly tasty story of two unlikely people meeting and falling in love...A fun, light read with plenty of humor and passion, Just One Taste makes it to my keeper shelf and has me searching for the book preceding this one.” ―Affair de Coeur on JUST ONE TASTE

“Awesome characters, delicious food and even more fabulous sex makes for a super sexy and fun read! Edwards does it again. Her stories are fun but so meaningful, and I will definiltey be reading her next book!” ―The Book Lush on JUST ONE TASTE

“This is a wonderfully tasty series. Once you take the first bite of this story you'll be hooked to the very last bite.” ―Once Upon A Romance (5 Stars) on JUST ONE TASTE

“There are a lot of elements in Just One Taste, and Edwards juggles them like a pro. The addition of mouthwatering recipes at the end of the book enhances the excellent reading experience, and draws you into the world of cooks and cooking. A very enjoyable contemporary romance with plenty of bite and heart.” ―Sacramento Book Review on JUST ONE TASTE

“I absolutely love Top Chef and Iron Chef America but have never really picked up a food/chef related novel before. I'm happy to report that Just One Taste was fun, sweet, and deliciously romantic.” ―PS I Love Books on JUST ONE TASTE

“This is my first 'taste' of a Louisa Edwards book, and I'll be going out for the others in this series. If you want a story with sweet romance, definite sensuality and enough laughs to make your day, then you need to read Just One Taste.” ―Long And Short Reviews on JUST ONE TASTE

“Rosemary is probably one of the most intricately sketched heroines I've ever seen in a book, and the romance is, in a word…intense, and the blending of the story was richly presented. Make it a point to read this Perfect 10 today!” ―Romance Reviews Today on JUST ONE TASTE

“Rosemary and Wes are each so very charming on their own, and together they just capture your heart. Just One Taste by Louisa Edwards has plenty of clever teasing between characters, and the tension and emotion keep those pages flipping like flapjacks!” ―The Romance Readers Connection on JUST ONE TASTE

“Funny, entertaining, and simmering with sexual chemistry.” ―Bookloons on JUST ONE TASTE

From the Back Cover

Welcome to the Rising Star Chef competition, where today's hottest chefs battle it out on national TV for a chance at fame, fortune and culinary supremacy. Every contestant hungers to win, but only one will take the prize…


When it comes to competitive cooking, Max Lunden is no stranger to winning…though he's never been great at working with a team. A master chef―and major hunk―he's traveled the world, picking up new cooking techniques as well as beautiful women. But when the prodigal chef returns home to his family's Greenwich Village restaurant, he discovers one too many cooks in the kitchen―and she's every bit as passionate as he is…


Juliet Cavanaugh used to have a crush on Max when she was just a teenager, hanging out at Lunden & Sons Tavern, hoping to catch a glimpse of the owner's oldest, and hottest, son. Now a chef herself―competing in the biggest culinary contest in the country―Juliet will be cooking side by side with the one man she's always admired…and desired. But despite their simmering attraction, Juliet is determined to keep her cool―no matter how hot it gets…

"Deliciously sensual and delightfully amusing."

Orlando Sentinel (on Can't Stand the Heat)


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Product Details

  • Series: Recipe for Love (Book 4)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Paperbacks; 1 edition (August 2, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 031235648X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312356484
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1 x 6.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,222,539 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By M. Jones on August 3, 2011
Format: Mass Market Paperback
1. As a fan of Top Chef, I really liked the cooking competition in the book. The suspense was great during the competition scenes, and there was lots of fun cooking trivia as well. It was also kind of fun to get a behind-the-scenes look at the drama going on between the judges and organizers of the competition, which I have often wondered about as I watch TV competitions.

2. The hero, Max, has just come home to New York from an extended trip in Japan, where he was learning to practice Zen. Personally I associate Zen with a bunch of really lame boys I knew in college. But Max is no naive pothead. He has a lot of energy, and a bit of a temper. He is not monkish at all, and yet his spirituality seems sincere, and admirable even.

3. Max and Jules both have a relationship with their parents that is very easy to identify with--they fear becoming their parents and also fear losing or damaging their familial relationships. I love how the characters grow closer by learning about each other's families and family demons. Though their families are very different, and they react very differently to their fears, there is something universal about their emotions that draws them together.

4. There are a lot of women in charge in this book--women who are very competent and smart, and who also love what they do.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
My Review:
I have been so excited to read this book. I read Louisa Edward's first cooking trilogy and absolutely fell in love with her writing. (You can see those reviews HERE.) This book definitely did not disappoint...so good and so much fun!!! Although I have to be honest, as much as I loved Jules & Max's story, my favorite part about this book was the side story line between Clair (editor of Delicieux magazine) & Kane (rock star foodie and fellow judge of the RSC.) If you haven't read Louisa Edwards before, she writes WONDERFUL side stories. I am hoping that this side story flows like Frankie & Jess' story in the last trilogy and flows throughout all three books!!

But back to the main characters of this book...Max & Jules. 6 years ago both of their lives changed the same night. Max's changed when he had a huge blow-up with his father and walked out to travel the world. Jules' when she showed up at Landon's Tavern looking for her best friend Danny (Max's brother) after she had been kicked out of her house by her irate, irrational mother and instead found a sympathetic shoulder and surrogate family via Gus, Max's father. Max left the family and Jules basically joined it. Now the family restaurant needs help and Max's mother has called him home to help out with the Rising Star Chef Challenge.

Max & Jules are both chefs that are going to have to work together on the competition, but there are lingering feelings for both of them. Jules has always been attracted to Max, but her loyalty falls to the family that took her in when she had nowhere else to turn. Max is shocked to find little Juliet all grown up and gorgeous, but he looks at her as the person who came in and took his place within the family...
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Prodigal wandering son Max is called back home to help the family restaurant prepare for a cooking competition. Upon returning, he discovers that his brothers best friend has usurped his position in the family, and finds he's also attracted to her. Jules has had bad luck with romance, especially with those she works besides. But a teen crush on Max soon re-materializes; while she fights her attraction, he makes it harder, all while they prepare to secure a space in a cooking competition that may help save the family business.

Authors that can combine romance with cooking, especially a cooking competition (total Food Network nerd!) have me at hello. Unfortunately, I was totally bored throughout most of this book. The characters lacked any real chemistry, the writing was dull, and the secondary romance was a dud from the start. I wanted to like this book, but as I would read a few pages, my mind would wander to other things like "did I remember to lock the front door?" I doubt I will give the second story in the series the time of day. If you are looking for an author that can write a spicy foodie romance novel, check out Shirley Jump's "Romance with Recipes" series - especially The Devil Served Tortellini. Good writing, great spicy romance, and mouth watering recipes.... pretty much everything that this books is not.
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For the past six years, Max Lunden has wandered the globe, learning cooking techniques from the best of the best. Max thinks he's gotten what he's always wanted - a chance to study under a master Italian butcher - but his life takes an unexpected turn when his mother calls him home. His family's restaurant is in need of help, and to generate business they're participating in the famous Rising Star Chef competition. Max comes home to help the team get through qualifiers, but Lunden & Sons Tavern isn't the same place he left. And one of the new additions is Chef Juliet Cavanaugh, his brother's best friend from childhood. Jules is all grown up, and irritated with Max's presence to boot. Max has never met a woman he couldn't charm, but Jules is different. She tempts him, challenges him, and makes him yearn for something he never thought he'd find: a home. But can he convince Jules there's enough room in the kitchen - and her heart - for him?

Too Hot to Touch is délicieux! Just like the food her characters create, author Louisa Edwards takes a classic - in this case, the trope of a heroine in love with her best friend's brother - and elevates it, giving the storyline her own spin to deliver something fresh and new. Too Hot to Touch shines with genuine warmth, humor, and affection.

Jules is a wonderful, hardworking heroine who you have to respect. She's easy to like, but what really captured my interest was how her past had scarred her. Jules never feels completely like she belongs, even though it's clear the Lunden family loves her. One of the best parts of Too Hot to Touch was watching Jules really see how much she's loved by the Lundens, Max most of all. And man, oh man, who wouldn't want to have Max fall in love with them?
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