Gwynn Flannigan wants respect from her father and freedom from her big, loud family. The icing on her cake would be to win a decorating competition hosted by her favorite food magazine writer. Cole Marshall's one outlet from the stress of business life is writing his Cooking in the Buff feature. Who cares if he never has time for fun?
The answer for them both lies in the deep freeze at Sweet Endings, the struggling ice cream shop Gwynn manages and the one property Cole needs to secure a big promotion. He’s stuck in Madrigal, Indiana to unravel a knot of family drama that drives him crazy.
Things heat between Gwynn and Cole on the competition floor when Cole’s alter ego is revealed. Cake and accusations fly while dreams and goals are left crumbling. In order to balance family, business, and love, Gwynn and Cole will need to work together and become partners—in more ways than one.
"There won't be any negotiations."
"We'll see." When Cole lunged for her hand, Gwynn shrieked and ran behind the counter. Hearing the clatter of his dress shoes against the tiles behind her, she ducked into the supply room then yanked open the door to the walk-in freezer.
The frosty interior instantly cooled her heated skin. Gwynn quickly moved to the far shelf, and then she turned around and held the phone behind her back. Cole's presence filled the freezer space. His broad shoulders blocked her view of the door and the florescent light beyond. Her heart raced as he approached. He didn't stop advancing until his body almost touched hers.
"Give me the phone, Gwynn. It's a vital part of my business." He inched close enough to slide an arm around her waist in an attempt to retrieve the smartphone.
"And this shop is my business, so I guess we're at a deadlock." Her backside pressed against the shelves stocked with frozen cardboard tubs of ice cream conflicted with her front that was wedged against the very warm, very hard body of a very angry Cole. In a different world, Gwynn acknowledged that having such a sexy man trying to feel her up in the freezer, albeit accidentally, would have been a highlight of her day, but this man was dangerous. He wanted her job, her livelihood, and he didn't care that she wanted to fight for it. "You need to leave."
"You need to return my phone." As Cole renewed the fight to retrieve his phone, his body rubbed against hers for one brief moment -- chest to chest, hip to hip, thigh to thigh and everywhere in between. Tingles erupted down her spine, intense and breath-catching. Gwynn caught a whiff of his cologne, a mix of cedar and citrus. She tamped the urge to put her face in the crook of his shoulder in order to smell him again.
"No." Was it in answer to his question or her inappropriate thought?
"You're an adult, Gwynn. Such behavior is asinine and childish."
"Fine." Cole shoved the fingers of one hand through his hair. The look he shot her made Gwynn feel like pond scum. "I'll be back tomorrow morning. Your father had better be here, pen in hand, because whether you like it or not, I'm leaving town with a signed deed for this property. Your opinions hold no sway on the transaction."
He slammed out of the freezer and seconds later, the bells attached to the front door chimed.
Gwynn slumped against the shelves. Cole Marshall would be a threat in more ways than one, but holy cow, the man was hot enough to melt all the ice cream in the freezer.
Posted by Desert Breeze Publishing on behalf of Readers' Favorite on 25th Sep 2013
"What Sandra Sookoo excels at in this story is presenting characters who are full of flaws, demons, and weaknesses without making them weak.
Sookoo has created a great getaway filled with decadent desserts, sensual kisses, and good old-fashioned love."
~Natasha Jackson, Readers' Favorite
Posted by Desert Breeze Publishing on behalf of Night Owl Reviews on 7th Sep 2013
"I love this author’s style and the way reading one of her books is like hanging out with good friends. This story is definitely heart-warming and touching and completely entertaining. If you like your romance with a little sizzle and a little humor then this is definitely one to pick up!"
~Pauline Michael, Night Owl Reviews
Posted by Renee Hughes on 11th Jul 2013
Since I read "Winner Takes All", I have adored Sandra Sookoo's sweet romances. She has a brilliant way of adding sensuality and intensity without weighing down the story with too much "content".
The *frosting* scene in this book is proof of that. I'm not going to give you any further details. :-)
Beautiful romance. Sigh-worthy. Bravo, Sandra!