Review – A Sweet Mess by Jayci Lee

**Disclaimer: I was given a free e-ARC in exchange for an honest review from NetGalley.**

Title A Sweet Mess

Author Jayci Lee

Description from Amazon

Aubrey Choi loves living in her small town nestled in the foothills of California, running her highly successful bakery away from the watch of her strict Korean parents. When a cake mix-up and a harsh review threaten all of her hard work and her livelihood, she never thought the jaded food critic would turn out to be her one-night stand. And she sure as hell never thought she’d see the gorgeous Korean hunk again. But when Landon Kim waltzes into her bakery trying to clean up the mess he had a huge hand in making, Aubrey is torn between throwing and hearing him out.

When she hears his plan to help save her business, Aubrey knows that spending three weeks in California wine country working with Landon is a sure recipe for disaster. Her head is telling her to take the chance to save her bakery while her heart—and her hormones—are at war on whether to give him a second chance. And it just so happens that Landon’s meddling friends want them to spend those three weeks as close as possible…by sharing a villa.

When things start heating up, both in and out of the kitchen, Aubrey will have to make a choice—to stick it out or risk her heart.

Release Date July 14, 2020

Initial Thoughts

This book was recommended to me on GoodReads from several of the other rom-coms I read recently. I was looking it up on Amazon and discovered that it was actually on NetGalley. I was excited to be able to read it early.

Some Things I Liked

  • Cooking show. I’ve been watching ever episode of Top Chef during this quarantine so I was super into the idea of a rom-com that incorporated a cooking show.
  • A perfectionist and a screw-up. I loved the contrast between Aubrey’s lifestyle and the way she built her business up as compared to the way Landon’s perfectionist ways led him down a road where he gave up on his dreams. I thought they made a great pair with excellent balance.
  • Banter and sass. This rom-com had top notch dialogue. I loved the characters, especially Tara. I hope Jayci Lee writes a spin off about her.

Series Value

I liked this book. I can see the author continuing with this series in the form of spin-offs. I’d like to see more of Landon’s brother and more backstory on both Aubrey and Landon’s moms. I’d definitely keep reading and I’d read any other books that Jayci Lee writes.

Final Thoughts

I enjoyed this book. I thought it was a fun rom-com with a sub plot (the cooking show), that I hadn’t seen before. It was a smidge predictable but most HEA rom-coms are that way so I didn’t mind that. I would continue with this if it becomes a series.


Recommendations for Further Reading

  • The Marriage Game by Sara Desai – if you liked the cultural references and the idea of living up to family expectations that A Sweet Mess explores, try this new release by Sara Desai.
  • Island Affair by Priscilla Oliveras – if you liked the themes of a character who felt like she was not living up to her family’s expectations but managed to build a business for herself, try this new release by Priscilla Oliveras.

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