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Review: The Secret French Recipes of Sophie Valroux

Title: The Secret French Recipes of Sophie Valroux

Author: Samantha Verant

Release Date: September 8, 2020

Rating: 3/5 Stars

Find it here: Goodreads

Synopsis from Goodreads: A disgraced chef rediscovers her passion for food and her roots in this stunning novel rich in culture and full of delectable recipes.

French-born American chef Sophie Valroux had one dream: to be part of the 1% of female chefs running a Michelin-starred restaurant. From spending summers with her grandmother, who taught her the power of cooking and food, to attending the Culinary Institute of America, Sophie finds herself on the cusp of getting everything she's dreamed of.

Until her career goes up in flames.

Sabotaged by a fellow chef, Sophie is fired, leaving her reputation ruined and confidence shaken. To add fuel to the fire, Sophie learns that her grandmother has suffered a stroke and takes the red-eye to France. There, Sophie discovers the simple home she remembers from her childhood is now a luxurious château, complete with two restaurants and a vineyard. As Sophie tries to reestablish herself in the kitchen, she comes to understand the lengths people will go to for success and love, and how dreams can change

My Review: There are some really great aspects to this book - The setting, the food descriptions and some of the characters. But then there are some major downsides - the main character has some flaws, I founds a few parts to be either predictable or unbelievable and the mix of English with French words to indicate a person was speaking french was jarring. First for the good. I really liked the majority of the secondary characters, they were really fun! I loved the setting of the Chateau and the descriptions of it, I just wish there had been more. I also loved the descriptions of all the foods. Despite those great parts of the book there were enough parts that I didn't like to knock it down to three stars. Sophie spends nearly half the book wallowing and whining. No one wants to read that for that long. Once she makes it to France things are a little unbelievable, at least for me. I don't want give away any spoilers so I'm not going into specifics but I found myself rolling my eyes a couple times. Overall it was a pretty good read and there were some things that could have been great but ultimately it lacked something for me.

*I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the publisher. All opinions are my own.*

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