Hello, Sunshines! I am super excited to be sharing my review of the latest instalment of the amazing Captivating Captains series by Catherine Curzon and Eleanor Harkstead. I will be waffling my way through another attempt at a review, this time for the gorgeous; The Captain and the Baker. So as always grab that cuppa and cake – you will need a cake, believe me, I hope you fall in love with this book as much as I have.
The Captain and the Baker by Catherine Curzon & Eleanor Harkstead
Series: Captivating Captain’s #7
Genre: M/M Romance
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Release Date: 25th August 2020
When a hot-tempered TV chef and a mild-mannered baker meet on the rugged Cornish coast, they’ve got the perfect ingredients for a red-hot snack.
Sweary and stressed celebrity chef Jake Brantham is the captain of several floating restaurants. When he’s sent to the idyllic village of Porthavel to turn a pirate ship into the next gastronomic sensation, it’s the last place on earth he wants to be.
Lauryn Trevorrow is the bakery king of Cornwall. From the humble pasty to a wedding cake fit for a mermaid queen, there’s nothing he doesn’t know about the art of baking. He lives in a cosy world of gingham and ganache, but at night he goes home to his smugglers’ cottage alone.
When he’s adopted by a lost kitten, Jake soon discovers that there’s more to Portavel than cream teas, lobster pots, and the annoyingly fastidious Locryn. As the village prepares for the wedding of its favourite young couple, Jake and Locryn find themselves as unlikely matchmakers for two locals who’d given up on love.
Torn between the call of Hollywood and the kisses of Locryn, will Jake choose a mansion in Beverly Hills or a cottage on the Cornish coast?
If I had to pick just one series that I could read until the end of days, then this would be the one. I have love, love, loved these Captivating Captains right from day one. I eagerly anticipate each new Captain, which I devour, I love it and then at the end go through a spell of cold turkey awaiting my next Captivating Captain fix and on it goes with every book, and the further into the series we go the more hooked I become.
Poor Catherine and Eleanor, they must be getting very tired of me bleating the same shameless bright-eyed, obsessive adoration for this series. I must be getting quite repetitive now after seven books, but I can’t help myself, I just feel the need to shout as loudly as possible for all to know just how much I love this series, and just one more thing; ladies you can never, ever stop writing these books, ever. I would be completely lost! There I’ve said it, I’ll move on now and actually talk about this book with cutie-pie Loc and hot-headed Jake.
So, as you may have gathered from my rather embarrassing love note at the start of this review, this is the seventh book in the Captivating Captain’s series – wait, seven!? Wow, where has the time gone? I remember each one as though I read them yesterday. For those who haven’t discovered the brilliance that is the Captivating Captain, every book is completely different from the next. Different eras, settings, and characters, the only connection is that each one has a gorgeous Captain taking centre stage. So take your pick, I’m not going to recommend that you start with this one or that one, all I’m going to say is; that your bookshelves NEED some Captivating Captain love. That’s it, simple!
Drat, I’ve gone and spent half an hour writing waffle, again, ah well, I’m sure everyone is used to my incessant babble by now.
Righty-O, back to the important stuff…
This time we are back in captivating Cornwall with a very prim, proper and passionate baker who has a very …shall we say…colourful imagination where cream horns are concerned. (I will never look at that particular confection in the same light again) and one of the most foul-mouthed chefs you have yet to meet, I think our Jakey would give a certain ‘Ramsey’ a run for his money with the swearing, my goodness that swoonsome, leather jacket-wearing chef is a cauldron of fire and brimstone….phew, it’s a wee bit hot around here!
These two are the complete opposites, chalk and cheese, sour and sweet; one being pleasant and unruffled with glorious arms…sigh; glorious, gorgeous arms…and the other is growly and sweary with surprising gentleness, and yet they really work together. When around each other there is a shimmer in the air, playfulness and a little cheeky banter. And I love them both! The story is told out through Jake’s perspective which works fabulously as we do get a ‘feel’ of the real Jake quite early, but – and this is the only negative thing I will say about the book – I would have loved to occasionally read Locryn’s perceptive on certain situations too, that’s just my personal view.
City boy and incredibly sweary chef; Jake is stressed to the hilt, he is under pressure and under doctors’ orders to slow down but being a celebrity chef with a new TV show to film, that ain’t going to happen, especially when he must transform an old pirate ship into a classy and successful floating restaurant as he has done in the past with huge success. But the catch here is he is on a deadline and he has to do it in time for a wedding. And another reason which is shooting up his blood pressure is a certain dashing and irritatingly proper baker. Jake would love to be anywhere else but in quiet Portavel, being surrounded by giant fibreglass cod, chirpy bakers and villagers who just happen to dislike him (at first)and being constantly harassed by a demoness of a producer.
Yup, our ladder is stressed, but thankfully he starts seeing that there is far more to this little fishing village than he originally came to think. And far more to the very polite, passionate and plummy toned, perfectly turned out, baking artist; Locyrn, the king of all things Cornish and the man who just happens to make Jake’s heart (and other places) go all a flutter with his ‘Goshs’ and ‘Fiddlesticks’.
I love the secondary match-making plot, that smoothly runs side by side with Locryn’s and Jake’s story and with it, we get to really see the softer, kinder and thoughtful Jake, the real Jake which he likes to hide behind the furiously raging and vile tongued celebrity chef persona. Plus that aspect of the story gives our lad’s the perfect chance to really get to know each other as they plot, expect lots of tongue-in-cheek flirting, sweet endearments and lots and lots of food. I think I went up a dress size just reading, all those pasty’s, cream buns and the bread…I am in bread heaven!!
The Captain and the Baker is a sweet, saucy, scrumptious and surprisingly very short love story. I love the second chance feel to it in regards to Jake, to me he starts off a little lost and then with Locyrn’s and little Dorothy’s help he is ‘found’. The setting is beautiful, with the briefest hint of sadness within the village. A great selection of colourful characters feature throughout, some you instantly adore and want to be happy and then there is one in particular who you love to hate – thank goodness she hobbled off, leaving the rest to breathe freely.
This is such a great feel-good, delightful, cheerful and endearing read, which is full of real village charm and some very saucy, blush-worthy moments, I was laughing and sighing in equal measure.
Yet, again another winner from the dynamic duo, I am super excited to see what comes next!
This was an Arc via the authors, which I voluntarily reviewed. Thank you, Catherine and Eleanor! xx