TITLE:Â The Chocolate Thief (Amour et Chocolat #1)
AUTHOR: Laura Florand
FORMAT: eBook, 320 pages (Kensington)
Cade Corey is heir to a huge American chocolate company. She lands in Paris, the city of her dreams, with the conviction that she will sign Paris’ number 1 chocolatier Sylvain Marquis to an exclusive contract to produce a high end line of artisan chocolates for her family’s discount chocolate company. Used to getting what she wants, Cade is shocked when SylvainÂ flippantlyÂ dismisses her proposition. But Cade doesn’t let Sylvain stop her from pursuing her dream and sets off into the city of love to make her dream come true yet everywhere she turns, there is handsome Sylvain. Cade and Sylvain might butt heads but their shared passion for chocolate and undeniable chemistry has them rethinking their first impressions of each other.
Chocolate! Paris! Romance! What more could a reader ask for? That’s what I thought when I first heard aboutÂ The Chocolate Thief. The book had good dialogue and really made me feel like I was in Paris. Unfortunately, the rest of it didn’t work for me.
My biggest issue was that I never grew to like Cade. I simply didn’t like her. All theÂ initialÂ reactions to her and all the French people calling her an “American self-centered capitalist” was exactly how I saw her from the start and she didn’t end up redeeming herself to me. Throughout the book, she keeps saying how she doesn’t understand why the French won’t let her buy what she wants, whether it’s Sylvain letting her buy his brand and recipes for her company or a cafÃ© not selling her milk because they serve espresso without milk. She is very materialistic and I never felt like she grew beyond out. She definitely grew as a character but not enough for me to enjoy her. At one point I was actually rooting and hoping she would be sent to jail for one of her actions! Not a good sign that youâre liking the characterâ¦ Â I did like seeing a strong, female lead. Cade is unapologetic about being hardworking and ambitious. I always like seeing a heroine who is a strong woman, being positivelyÂ portrayedÂ and not forced to sacrifice everything for love. Sylvain is a very sympathetic character and enjoyable romantic lead. I liked how they hinted at his awkward, nerdy teenage years and his passion for chocolate was wonderful to read.
The romance isÂ hot. There is no denying the chemistry between Cade and Sylvain. Their scenes together really did sizzle off the page. As for their romance, overall I could understand why they ended up together but it still lacked something. They suffered from “insta-love” (a huge pet peeve of mine)Â and while yes I understand “lust at first sight”, there wasn’t enough development in their relationship for me to believe that they are as deeply in love as they say they are by the end. Cade wants to own Sylvainâs company so badly, I felt like that blurred the line between if she truly desiredÂ him, Sylvain the man rather thenÂ Sylvain the chocolatier. I struggled to understand how Sylvain would want to be with a woman who wants to buy him. It didnât make sense to me.
Generally there were things that irked me about the story, I didnât love how Cade kept talking about how she would simply spy on Sylvain and steal his recipes. Um Iâm sorry but I really donât see how that is a good basis for a romance? Sure her conversations with her Grandpa about it were cute but I just couldnât get over that this heroine is talking about stealing someone’s property andÂ justifyingÂ it to herself since it’s their fault for not selling it to her and she has to get it no matter what. Ugh. I also didn’t like the breaking into chocolaterie parts! If I can’t support or understand her actions, then I simply can’t like her.
Now all that being said, I still recommendÂ The Chocolate Thief! Surprised?Â I know! The thing with this book is that most people I know who read it, reallyÂ reallyÂ enjoyed it and I can see why. The dialogue is fun and witty, the romance is hot and sexy, the pacing is good and the descriptions of the chocolate had my mouth watering! I can’t hold it against the book that I just never clicked with Cade and couldn’t get over my initial impression of her.
The Chocolate ThiefÂ is the first title in theÂ Amour et ChocolatÂ series by Laura Florant and yes, I will be reading the next book in the series. Whatever issues I had with #1, the writing was good enough to keep me interested in reading. You can check out the entireÂ Amour et ChocolateÂ titles hereÂ and be sure to read my review ofÂ The Chocolate Touch (Amour et Chocolate #4)Â the week of July 30th!