Monday, September 28, 2015

Nuts (Hudson Valley #1) By: Alice Clayton




I just want to take a minute to say thank you so much to Gallery Books for sending me an ecopy of this book to review. I can't tell ya'll how much I appreciate you guys sending me all these amazing books. Ya'll are book rock stars out there :D





The New York Times bestselling author of Wallbanger and Rusty Nailed is back with Nuts, the first in a brand new series set in New York’s beautiful Hudson Valley.

Roxie Callahan is a private chef to some of Hollywood’s wealthiest, and nastiest, calorie-counting wives. After a dairy disaster implodes her carefully crafted career in one fell ploop, she finds herself back home in upstate New York, bailing out her hippie mother and running the family diner.

When gorgeous local farmer Leo Maxwell delivers her a lovely bunch of organic walnuts, Roxie wonders if a summer back home isn’t such a bad idea after all. Leo is heavily involved in the sustainable slow food movement, and he likes to take his time. In all things. Roxie is determined to head back to the west coast as soon as summer ends, but will the pull of lazy fireflies and her very own Almanzo Wilder be enough to keep her home for good?

Salty. Spicy. Sweet. Nuts. Go on, grab a handful. 



Ok so I guess now is a good time to say that I went into this book completely blind. I do this every now and then, especially if it is an author I religiously follow. And while I loved Alice Clayton's Cocktail series, it is sadly the only books by her that I have read. Until Nuts that is.

And yet here I was intrigued by the title alone... Because what person isn't when the thing is called Nuts and the cover is of a shirtless guy holding a handful of nuts. But seriously, I did what I did on purpose. Kinda as an experiment and just kinda because if I read the synopsis for a book I start trying to guess what will happen and then I spend the entire thing guessing (to which I'm usually right lol) but anyways, I wanted this one to be a surprise and just wanted to enjoy it.


And boy did I enjoy it. This book was so funny. I spent over half of it doing that weird silent laugh you do when you're out in public and are trying to be desecrate but really look like a suffocating dolphin instead. Seriously Warning to everyone who picks up this book... If you are planning on reading this around anyone else be ready for the odd looks and funny stares, because this one will have you rolling. There were so many jokes, and witty banter between the characters. Alice really has a way of creating these characters that take on a life of their own, and each of them have their funny corks and stuff. Which to me made the whole thing so much better. I could totally picture myself walking into Roxie's family diner and joking around with her and THE Chad Bowmen. 




It is just one of those books that will suck you in by the end of the first few pages and let go until the last page is read (Ha! it never lets go. You will be dying for more by the time you finish Wahahahahha) 

But for reals can I tell you how much this small town Alice created appeals to me. I grew up in Florida, and while most people thing oh Florida that's in the south it must be all southern fun and crap and Disney all  the time... LIES!!!!!!! (Ok there was a lot of Disney involved in my life but that's beside the point.) What I'm trying to say is that Florida is by far the most un-southern southern state there is (I shall blame all the tourists for that one) So... That means that I missed out on all the close-nit town stuff. Because so many people come from so many places down there you loose that homey town feel. Plus my city was actually fairly big (That is size wise, There was NOTHING! I repeat Nothing to do there, except go play tag in Walmart at 2 AM on the weekends.) There were 4 high schools in the area so it wasn't like everyone got all excited about Friday night football because everyone split into a billion different directions that night, and we sure as heck didn't have that diner that everyone would go to when they were hungry, or the awesome farm. There aren't a whole lot of farms in central Florida, Orange groves? Yes. Farms? No. And we didn't co-op with those groves either. They were kinda mean actually.

So I guess my point is, that I love these books about the close small towns. They just make me happy, and I really lose myself in books like this. I love the idea of everyone knowing each other and being able to stop in somewhere and just say hi, and talk about their kids and family. To be a part of something like that.

Ok, so away from my small town day dreams. (I do live in Georgia now, and vicariously live through my 14 year old nephew who is in the marching band at school. Football is a big deal and I love going to the games. Plus I know EVERYONE in the town now. I'm getting there ya'll hehe)


So lets talk characters for a bit.


I love Roxie. She is freaking hilarious. The things that go through this woman's mind really had me laughing the whole story. Between her irrational bee fear, and just to quirky little ways she did things or thought made her a really great character. And while I do want that small town thing she has, I understand her need to get away from it all. Things were never easy for me growing up, and while i didn't feel the need to go quite as far away as Roxie did to get away from it, I remember jumping at the thought of college and being away from all the drama that was my family. (I think I actually threatened to go to Alaska at one point if I recall right) So I could relate with Roxie's hesitancy to have to go back to all the things she left.


Roxie isn't one to really put up with a lot of crap either. She tells it like it is most of the time (probably a bit to honest sometimes actually) But that's something that makes her so funny I guess. She never let's anyone assume things are going to be a particular way but the banter she keeps constantly going inside her head is hilarious. I won't give too much away, but her thoughts about the LA women that she works as a private chef too had me laughing and high lighting parts constantly. Normally I am a post-it noter when I read, but I had an eBook copy this time so I had to settle for highlighting my favorite parts instead. And let me tell you there were a lot of those.


Plus Roxie really like making up words, or uh putting situations into really big long one word sentences... Like "Ohmygodthisguycouldwreckmefor-alwaysbutImightbeokwithit" And while things like that amuse me to no end, it's the rest of the content that surrounds that that makes it so much better.

And I guess the last thing I like about her is that she isn't always sure what to do. She thinks she has a nice well laid out plan, and then as she begins to get comfortable with things the edges begin to blur. She isn't sure what she really wants, and I like seeing her have to work through all that and see what really matters to her, and not just what she thinks does.

Time to move on to Leo now I guess.

I really truly liked this guy. Not just because he is a hot sexy farmer either (But it helps haha)
He is generally just a good guy trying to make something of his life that will help people.
I like that despite what his family name may be, he tries to do things that will make him happy and at the same time make a difference.

Not that Leo isn't hot and all about the good loving stuff, he seemed pretty good at that hehe. But seriously I always find the characters that have multi dimensions to be my favorites. They are a little complicated and a whole lot interesting. They make you wonder what is going on in their heads but also wonder what has made them think and act the way they do.

Leo has a lot of things he won't tell Roxie and I spent a majority of the book trying to guess what it could be (let me tell you... I never would have guessed what it actually was) I mean we are talking a real whoa hold the phone no way kinda thing. But I liked the twist and thought it added to the story in a good way.

I know for me this review of the male character is a bit tame. I have a hard time really explaining him for some reason. He's just as funny as Roxie though, and drops jokes like no ones business. See here I go about the laughing again. I'm telling you it will happen. Be ready.


I want to talk about one more character real fast because he is my favorite, Well 2 characters I guess actually. And those are THE Chad Bowmen and THE Logan O'Reilly.

They really made this whole book for me. They are funny and smart and absolutely the best gay friends a girl could possibly have. They added so many things to this book. Between their witty banter and ridiculous jokes, I found myself laughing all the time and wanting to jump into the book to hang out with them. They were sneaky little devils too. Always managing to get what they wanted or to make Roxie see things a different way. Manipulative is a word that works well to describe them hehe.

And I love how they want to learn how to do these odd things you wouldn't think they would want to. Like Zombie Pickle Classes. I'll leave it at that and let you see for yourself (Best part of the book BTW)



But they just make the book so fun, and give a lite side to some of the more serious things going on. Plus they really put things in perspective for Roxie most of the time.


This book was absolutely amazing.. There were so many things I liked about it. And I truly found it to be one of the funniest books I have read in a while too.

I really hope I could convince you to go pick up a copy when the book releases and that you even give Alice Clayton's other books a shot if you haven't already read them. She is a great author and you wont be disappointed in the least.

I give Nuts: *****5 Stars*****