For What It's Worth

Monday, April 18, 2016

Mini Reviews: The Restaurant Critic’s Wife, Love, Lies and Spies








The Restaurant Critic's WifeLila Soto has a master’s degree that’s gathering dust, a work-obsessed husband, two kids, and lots of questions about how exactly she ended up here.


In their new city of Philadelphia, Lila’s husband, Sam, takes his job as a restaurant critic a little too seriously. To protect his professional credibility, he’s determined to remain anonymous. Soon his preoccupation with anonymity takes over their lives as he tries to limit the family’s contact with anyone who might have ties to the foodie world. Meanwhile, Lila craves adult conversation and some relief from the constraints of her homemaker role. With her patience wearing thin, she begins to question everything: her decision to get pregnant again, her break from her career, her marriage—even if leaving her ex-boyfriend was the right thing to do. As Sam becomes more and more fixated on keeping his identity secret, Lila begins to wonder if her own identity has completely disappeared—and what it will take to get it back. ~ Goodreads


Source: Purchased
Quick thoughts: 4 stars for Lila and the honest portray of a marriage/motherhood.

2 stars for Sam (Lila’s husband, and secret food critic) and the resolution of their marital problems problems.

I have never in all my years of reading condoned an affair but I was whole heartedly rooting for Lila to cheat on her selfish bastard of a husband. SPOILER: highlight –> (She doesn't)

He's just unreal in what he expects and how isolated/cut off from any friends he makes her and when it came to the resolution - even his apology was half ass with a dig towards her being jealous of his job. Lila is a better woman than I would be. There would be some major grovel expected if that were me.

And to top it all off - his freaking about about keeping his identity secret was for nothing. SPOILER: highlight –> EVERY. SINGLE. PERSON. KNEW. So stupid. Why didn't he just review under a pen name if he didn't want anyone knowing him?

Despite my extreme dislike of Sam, I adored Lila and the exploration of marriage and the give and take/compromise involved and how lonely motherhood can sometimes be. Not to mention all the yummy food descriptions!


***



Love, Lies and SpiesJuliana Telford is not your average nineteenth-century young lady. She’s much more interested in researching ladybugs than marriage, fashionable dresses, or dances. So when her father sends her to London for a season, she’s determined not to form any attachments. Instead, she plans to secretly publish their research.

Spencer Northam is not the average young gentleman of leisure he appears. He is actually a spy for the War Office, and is more focused on acing his first mission than meeting eligible ladies. Fortunately, Juliana feels the same, and they agree to pretend to fall for each other. Spencer can finally focus, until he is tasked with observing Juliana’s traveling companions . . . and Juliana herself. ~
Goodreads (YA)


Source: arc provided by the publisher
Quick thoughts: The romance was so dang cute! I loved how unique both Juliana and Spencer were and how they were so drawn to each other. Their conversations were wonderful.

I do wish the *spies* portion of this title was integrated better. I was hoping for more intrigue – or gadgetry maybe. Instead it seemed more of a plot device to keep throwing Juliana and Spencer together.

Nevertheless, this was a cute, light read.

21 comments:

  1. Having a work-obsessed husband of my own I'm not sure that your first book particularly appeals to me. Much more my taste is Love, Lies And Spies and even then I'm not too sure the romantic aspect would be altogether to my taste.

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    1. I hope he isn't obsessed to the point of not letting you have friends like this guy lol

      I actually think you would be ok with the romance in that one. It's light and more verbal sparring - it doesn't overpower the story at all.

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  2. Hm... to root for an affair... he must be an ass... or at least aspire to that level of greatness... ;) Love, Lies and Spies does sound like something I would enjoy as well. Nice!

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    1. I NEVER want a couple to split up or condone an affair but I was like....runnnnn lol

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  3. I was so excited bout a book about a restaurant critic ... until I read all the spoilers. Sadly, I think I will pass on this.
    Jen @ YA Romantics

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    1. There are little food/resturaunt critiques at the beginning of each chapter. I wish the husband wasn't such an asshat - I can handle problems with the marriage but his behavior was uncalled for.

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  4. Oh yeah, Lila's husband is an ass. He's so full of himself!

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    1. An over the top ass. I would have left him lol

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  5. even though sam wasnt the best character for you glad to hear it was a good look at marriage

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    1. It was and I liked that part - I just think he should have had to grovel more lol

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  6. Love, Lies, and Spies is a title that obviously screams SPIES. haha Sorry it was lacking that and was more about the love, but it's good you at least liked that aspect of it.

    The Restaurant Critic's Wife sounds really interesting. I read one other review for this one. I think I'd really hate her husband too though.

    -Lauren

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    1. It was balanced with the spy/romance it's just that the spy stuff wasn't as cool as I was expecting.

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  7. Sam sounds dreadful, but I am glad you enjoyed aspects of this story :) Cute cover

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    1. Total jerk but I loved the other people enough to still enjoy the book overall.

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  8. Love, Lies and Spies looks wonderful! I've seen this on some people's WoW's, so it nice to see you read and liked it.

    I don't think The Restaurant Critic's Wife is for me- because I too would probably end up cheering her on to cheat. And I agree, a pen name would have solved the majority of his issues.

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  9. EW. EW. An affair?? AN. AFFAIR? I hate cheating in real life so in books, ew...DOUBLE HATE! I'm sorry you to suffer through that but at the same time at least you did enjoy some parts of the book, the main character to be exact! And the last one, at least there could have been more of a mystery with the "spy" part in the title.

    EPIC REVIEW, LOVELY! <3

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  10. A book that had you actually condoning an affair? Ha, that sounds different! And different is interesting :)

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  11. Ahh I never want them to have an affair but I could get behind a divorce from someone like that. Meh

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