Book Review: Hadley Beckett’s Next Dish by Bethany Turner

From the Back Cover:

Celebrity chef Maxwell Cavanagh is known for many things: his multiple Michelin stars, his top-rated Culinary Channel show, To the Max, and most of all his horrible temper. Hadley Beckett, host of hte Culinary Channel’s other top-rated show, At Home with Hadley, is beloved for her Southern charm and for making her viewers feel like family. 

When Max experiences a very public temper tantrum and is sent packing, his only chance to get back on TV and in the public’s good graces is to work alongside Hadley. As these polar-opposite celeb chefs begin to peel away the layers of public persona and reputation, they will not only deiscover the key ingredients for getting along but also learn the secret recipe for unexpected forgiveness… and maybe even love. 

In the meantime, hide the knives.

My Thoughts:

Let me just say, cooking shows are not my thing. Never have been.

I mean, I cook and bake. People in my house want to eat every single day, so I figure I might as well try to enjoy it. But it isn’t a passion.

Bethany Turner’s writing will, however, always be my thing. Somehow she manages to whip up a situation that is both familiar and bizarre then lets it spin – characters and all. While you furiously turn pages, the characters become people who make you laugh (sometimes snort) right out loud while their hurts start dripping off your chin. By the time you hit those last few pages, you half-think to yourself, “Maybe I should slow down? Nah! I gotta find out how she lands this thing!!”

Reading this Turner means you take a sticky situation, fold in an unlikely romance while stirring the pot well, then let the whole mess rise in anticipation of how it will all come together while setting a few cups of powdered sugar aside to coat while still hot out of the oven! #HadBeck

When I first saw the application to be on Bethany’s launch team, I was truly giddy. The first book of hers I’d ever read and reviewed for our church was The Secret Life of Sarah Hollenbeck. I’d never EVER read an author like her – Bethany, I mean! I loved how she fearlessly and with no small amount of snark tackled real issues and faced them down with truth covered by a generous dosage of humor.

Themes:

rivals, television shows, chefs, cooking, feminism, mysogny, men relating to women, double standards, relationships, miscommunication, redemption, and true friendship

Reservations:

I would say that while this book doesn’t have any “bed scenes”, it does have enough encounters with kissing that depending on their maturity, it might not be appropriate for middle school girls.

Recommendations:

This book is a fantastic book club option for a small group of high school girls.

What do you do when guys talk down to you or call you “doll” in a situation where they wouldn’t ever think of doing so to another man? When should you speak up? How? What did you think of Hadley’s different responses? What advice would you give her? How are we to choose grace yet still call men to see us as image-bearers of Christ?

These are hard questions and as the mother of a 15 year old, I know how this Mama Bear would react, but that’s not always the right choice.

But as a beautiful fictional getaway from this quarantine life… oh my goodness! I love a Bethany Turner novel!! This one did not disappoint.

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