Review: The Chocolate Heart by Laura Florand


Title: The Chocolate Heart (Amour et Chocolat #5)
Author: Laura Florand
Date of publication: 25 Nov 2013
Genre: Romance / Paris / Chocolatier

Author's links:
Website / Twitter / Facebook / Goodreads

My rating: 4.5 stars

Goodreads Blurb

No one hates Paris--except Summer Corey. The moody winters. The artists and their ennui. The inescapable shadow of the Tour Eiffel. But things go from bad to worse when Summer stumbles into brooding, gorgeous chef pâtissier Luc Leroi and indecently propositions the hero of French cuisine...

Luc has scrambled up from a childhood panhandling in the Paris Métro to become the king of his city, and he has no patience for this spoiled princess, even if she does now own his restaurant. Who cares if she smiles with all the warmth of July? She doesn't eat dessert!

There is only one way to tempt her. A perfect, impossibly sweet seduction...

My Review

This is my favourite book in this series so far, though I have only read the previous one, The Chocolate Touch and I really enjoyed it. I can honestly say this one worked even better for me.

There a quite a few similarities between the two books - the heroes, Dom and Luc have a lot of things in common - they are both ambitious, self-made men, rising from nothing to be the best chocolatiers in Paris. 

The heroines are rather different, though. Summer is a complicated character, she acts like a spoilt brat a lot of the time, yet she is sad and miserable and lonely and unloved when living in Paris. It is difficult to feel sorry for someone as privileged  as her, yet Ms Florand manages to get you to feel deeply for her. Summer's lack of self-esteem and belief in her self-worth are presented very convincingly. She is so reluctant to let Luc into her life and into her heart that at times she is even downright cruel to him. It is her defence mechanism, she acts like that to protect herself from becoming dependant on him, losing the independence she gained while living in self-exile on a tropical island.

Luc, was just amazing, even better than Dom from The Chocolate Touch. He has overcome a difficult childhood through establishing total control in his life, something his step-father taught him. This helped him become one of the best chocolatiers in Paris but it ultimately left him empty and numb inside. He was only able to express his emotions in the desserts he made. That's until Summer came along.

The relationship between Summer and Luc grows slowly and after some initial misunderstandings, they gradually open to one another. I was frustrated a bit with their lack of communication at the beginning but this was quickly resolved and their love blossomed beautifully. It them some time and they needed some outside help (Partick, Luc's sous-chef, was quite helpful in this respect) to eventually overcome their own issues and be happy together.

The main thing that sets apart this series, is the amazing writing style of Ms Florand. It is very lyrical, sensual, sweet and addictive as chocolate. Her voice is very engaging and you can't help but feel all of the characters' emotions.

One of my objections in the previous book was the lack of epilogue. I generally like to see the couples further along in their relationship, so I particularly fond of epilogues. I was really happy that Ms Florand gave Luc and Summer's story a very sweet epilogue. It was lovely and completed their story in a beautiful way.

The next book in the series, The Chocolate Temptation, is coming in January 2014 and it will be about Patrick. He was an amazing character, funny and smart and I can't wait to read his story.

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  1. Lovely review, Ellie! I'm glad you weren't as frustrated by this as I was. I LOVED The Chocolate Touch and it seems you loved this one. I did enjoy this one by the end, and I have to agree the epilogue was so lovely! Jaime and Dom are still my favorite couple so far. I need to go back and read books 2 and 3 still. Laura Florand's writing is utterly gorgeous and she creates a near magical world. I will continue to read her books in spite of some of my issues with this one. :)


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