Sunday, March 31, 2024

The Secret Ingredient by Sue Heath


Title: The Secret Ingredient 
Author: Sue Heath
Publisher: One More Chapter
Release Date: January 18, 2024 

A delicious story that wraps itself around your heart’ Evie Woods, bestselling author of The Lost Bookshop.
It’s been three years, two weeks and one day since Kate Shaw’s life changed forever. Three years, two weeks and one day that Kate has been angry – with herself and life.

But today is different. Different because Kate has finally taken the step she’s been avoiding…back into the kitchen. Now, what begins as a (disastrous) attempt to make pancakes becomes a culinary journey that is not only a love letter to someone so important to her, but also an unexpected means of connection to a community she never knew she had…

A sweet story with sweet characters!

Kate Shaw is done being angry. She has quit her job as a teacher and has decided to finally use her kitchen to make pancakes. Her husband passed away three years earlier and she knows she needs to move forward. He was a great cook and she misses him dearly and all the special dishes he used to make for them.

While she's attempting to cook, someone knocks at her door. The old man's name is Charles and he tells her, her house used to be a tea place. His wife Mary and he used to enjoy many afternoons there. He wonders if she would cook something for his Mary. After talking with Charles for a while, Kate finds herself saying yes. She will cook scones for them.

Next, Kate bumps into her neighbor, Della. Della is divorced and her faithful companion is her dog. They start a conversation and soon Kate invites Della to the meal she is preparing for Mary and Charles.

During all these events, Kate keeps on running into another one of her neighbors, Jack. He has recently moved close by and their first few interactions weren't great. However, Kate soon learns what happened to Jack to make him react the way he did.

The Secret Ingredient gives us a little bit of everything. There is loss, there is sadness but there is also hope, friendship, and memories. Food is a great memory inducer. A certain food smell can trigger a wonderful memory of someone you loved who has cooked for you. A food memory can also be comforting. I know it happens to me when I get sick and I just want to smell my mother's chicken soup recipe.

I haven't tried any of the recipes in this book but I want to.

Cliffhanger: No

4/5 Fangs

A complimentary copy was provided by One More Chapter via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

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