Friday, May 27, 2011

Book Review: Gone with a Handsomer Man by Michael Lee West

Pages: 352
Genre: Adult Fiction
Pub. Date: April 12, 2011
My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Goodreads says, "Take one out-of-work pastry chef . . . Teeny Templeton believes that her life is finally on track. She’s getting married, she’s baking her own wedding cake, and she’s leaving her troubled past behind. And then? She finds her fiancé playing naked badminton with a couple of gorgeous, skanky chicks. Add a whole lot of trouble . . . Needless to say, the wedding is off. Adding insult to injury, her fiancé slaps a restraining order on her. When he’s found dead a few days later, all fingers point to Teeny. And stir like crazy! Her only hope is through an old boyfriend-turned-lawyer, the guy who broke her heart a decade ago. But dredging up the past brings more than skeletons out of the closet, and Teeny doesn’t know who she can trust. With evidence mounting and the heat turning up, Teeny must also figure out where to live, how to support herself, how to clear her name, and how to protect her heart. "

Teeny has it all.  She's about to be married, she lives in a great house in Charleston with her wealthy fiance, she is taking cooking classes while trying to live her dream of becoming a pastry chef.  Things all go up in flames though when she comes home early from her cooking class to find her fiance playing naked badmitten with two good looking girls.  She promptly starts throwing peaches at them and finds herself in trouble with the law as she, surprisingly, injures them.  Just when she thinks things can't get worse, she runs in to her ex-boyfriend and love of her life and heartbreaker, who happens to be a lawyer.  It's a good thing he practices law as her fiance later shows up dead and Teeny is a suspect.  Gone with a Handsomer Man is a hilarious southern novel and a great murder mystery.  

Teeny is a character that I really pitied.  She is isolated, has no job, relies completely on her fiance for everything (which is a huge mistake if you ask me!) and has no family and friends other than her fiance's step mom.  It's really not a good situation and she has to pick up the pieces of her life and figure things out for herself.  Teeny reminded me a bit of  spunky Sookie Stackhouse; however, Teeny is more content with staying home and baking.  I'll be honest that she made some DUMB decisions, but that's what made it all the more interesting. I kept wondering how the heck Teeny was going to get out of each crazy situation!

West is a funny author. I had no idea that I would be laughing out loud as much as I did when I was reading Gone with a Handsomer Man.  I loved the snarky tone and the funny one-liners.  It counterbalanced the murder mystery part of the book very well.

I also loved Teeny's interest in food and the many references to recipes in the book.  I love southern food, so it was a delight reading about various recipes, like Teeny's Vanilla Peach Coffee Cake.  Yum! In fact, West has included a few of the recipes in the novel, which is something I love!  There's no doubt that foodies will love this read.

Gone with a Handsomer Man isn't going to set the world on fire, but it's the perfect beach read, because it will have you laughing out loud and enveloped in a fun murder mystery with a side of hot romance.  The ending had me gaping and I'm pretty sure I said, "OMG!"  It's pretty scandalous and the ending set us up for a sequel...I hope!

*Watch the book trailer
*Read an excerpt

*Thank you to Anne from Authors on the Web for sending me this ARC in exchange for an honest review.


  1. Teeny did remind me a lot of Sookie Stackhouse. As I read I even pictured Teeny as looking like True Blood's Sookie.

    I agree with you that this is a perfect beach read. I loved all the food references and Teeny's family cookbook. :)

    Excellent review!

  2. O it sounds excellent.

    I feel bad for the gal already.

  3. Christina- I agree! Thanks so much for stopping by!

    Juju- I know, right?! Thanks for visiting!


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