Tuesday, 25 October 2011

ARC Book Review: The Secret Ingredient by Dianne Blacklock

Title: The Secret Ingredient
Author: Dianne Blacklock
Publisher: Pan Macmillan Australia
Published: 1st November 2011
Type: ARC Paperback
Pages: 385
Source: Pan Macmillan Australia

Synopsis not available on Goodreads yet.  The below synopsis was received via Press Release from Pan Macmillan Australia.

Taste was such an evocative sense; Andie had closed her eyes, with the scone melting in her mouth, and been transported back to her grandmother's kitchen....

Nourishment is nurture. That's what Andie learned from her grandmother and what she's always believed about cooking. But somehow, since marrying Ross, she's allowed her love of food to take a back seat and given up her dream of becoming a chef.

Lately she's been craving more. And when her marriage falls apart, she's determined to find herself again and take back control of her destiny.

The first step is taking a job in the kitchen of renowned chef Dominic Gerou. The brooding Englishman is more than Andie bargains for, but the new Andie is ready for anything, even a bad-tempered chef who makes it clear he won't tolerate mistakes.

In this beautiful new novel, Dianne Blacklock takes us on a sumptuous journey of the heart as Andie uncovers the secret ingredient for her new life, and shows that no matter how many false starts you may have, if you hold on to your passion and your dreams, anything is possible.


This is my first novel by Dianne Blacklock and I loved it.  Dianne is an Australian author and this book is set in Sydney, Australia.  Andie is in her thirties, just discovering that she can still reach for her dreams and make them happen.

Andie married a man quite older than herself and being a chef didn't fit into their lifestyle, so Andie didn't follow her dreams when she was married.  Getting itchy feet, she wanted something new and her husband bought her a gourmet delicatessen, since she was so interested in food.  The Deli was great, but it still didn't allow her to create and cook her own food, her dream was to become a chef.

Through her husbands contacts, Andie was given a trial in a kitchen with a three-hat chef, Dominic Gerou.  Andie was nervous, but confident at the same time.  It had been 10 years since being in a professional kitchen and she was hoping that her skills would come back to her in the kitchen.  Having to de-bone a chicken, it all fell apart, Andie had no idea what she was doing and ran out like a little school girl. This was the night everything fell apart.  Everything she had known for the past 10 years no longer existed.

One day, Andie decided to take her life back and went back to Dominic to ask for another chance.  Andie was heading up the chef ladder in leaps and bounds only to be knocked down again when family trouble erupted.

This is a pure romance novel, with everything included.  I cried, laughed and became enraged with Andie following along with her life.  Dianne really knows how to draw the reader in and become apart of the story. I  haven't had the honor to read any of Dianne's other books, but I certainly will be adding them to my list now.  The Secret Ingredient was wonderful and shows that everybody can reach for their dreams, no matter when in life they are.  Highly recommend to all romance enthusiasts.

My rating 4 explosions - definitely worth reading

You can find Dianne Blacklock on her blog, http://dianneblacklock.wordpress.com, on twitter, her website and find out more on Dianne's books on Goodreads, Amazon, Kobo and The Reading Room.

A big thank you to Pan Macmillan Australia for sending me this book for review.

1 comment:

  1. Your review is lovely and the book sounds great too. :D