Dinner for Two is best described as short, sweet and hot. With less than 40 pages to work with, Eileen Griffin managed to tell a complete story. Everything the reader needs to know about Sonia, the dinner party she is organizing and the reasons she has for desperately needing it to be a success are revealed in just enough detail without slowing the story down. The same is true for Sonia’s obvious attraction to Tony, the hot chef she’s been working with for the past few months. “Sonia sighed and swallowed, pushing away any thoughts of the other Italian sausage she’d had naughty dreams about since their first meeting.” I loved the interactions and conversations between Tony and Sonia. They were witty and smart and felt natural while they were combining their efforts to save the dinner party, and sensual and hot when they found themselves alone. “I want to watch you fall apart for me. Show me how beautiful you are when you come, Sonia.” – Tony And at times the banter between these two characters is just plain old funny. “I love a mean frittata. I love friendly ones too.” - Sonia In fact this book has it all; there’s wonderful food, a sexy chef, a sizzling attraction, and a little bit of angst. Not to mention a rather steamy encounter in the bedroom and a happy ever after. In fact, if I have one regret it is that this story wasn’t a few pages longer. I think the love scene in the bedroom could have been a little bit longer, a little bit less rushed. Other than that, Dinner for Two was pure enjoyment; 45 minutes of reading bliss. I may have mentioned this in my review of Eileen Griffin’s previous book – Chasing Matt – but I’ll say it again; I’ll be keeping an eye on this author.
Romance on the Go TM
Sonia Davenport has dreams of coordinating and planning special events. When she’s given the opportunity to plan a dinner for her boss and his shareholders, she jumps at the chance to make everything perfect. Helping her plan the special night is the head chef of the restaurant, Tony Mancinni, who is not only charming but goes out of his way to make Sonia feel special during the entire planning process.
The dinner party almost turns disastrous when an employee mixes up the orders and sets out the wrong food. In a mad rush to save the dinner, Sonia and Tony realize their attraction to each other when things heat up in the kitchen. However, Tony has to convince Sonia that he wants more than just an extra set of hands in his restaurant—he wants her to stay the night so he can convince her to stay for good.
Tony nodded and gently rubbed his finger along her bottom lip. "To be honest, I had hoped everything would be perfect tonight because I wanted to impress you. When you came in for brunch that first Sunday and laid out your plans, not only were you beautiful, but you had a detailed description of what you wanted. On the catering side of things, you have no idea how attractive that is. Then, when you came in for your tasting, I didn't think I was going to make it through the afternoon without asking you out. But I have a strict rule: Don't date the clients until after the function is over. So I waited. Do you have any idea how hard it was to wait?"
Sonia shook her head slightly, then let her lips part. Instead of replying to him, she slid her tongue out to meet his finger, gently caressing the tip. He hissed in a breath, his eyes fixated on her tongue and lips. Feeling emboldened by his words, she leaned closer and drew his finger deeper inside her mouth, wrapping her lips around it as she laved it with her tongue.
"Sonia," he whispered. "You're so beautiful. But I didn't ask you up here for this."
She leaned back, his finger sliding out of her mouth. All the nerves and doubts she'd felt earlier were replaced by a heat that was coursing through her. She'd felt it all night in the kitchen with him and it was stronger now that she knew he wanted her as badly as she wanted him.
I’m glad you asked me up here, Tony. But if we're being honest with each other, I think dinner can wait. You see, I've lost my appetite. For food, that is."
I love your stories. They leave me wanting more. Write, write, write...summer is nearly here and I need some summer reads!
What a cute story but just not long enough only because I wanted more. It was one of those books that I was shocked when I hit the last page. I loved the characters. They were simple not complex or deep which made for a good read. The author introduced them well and focused on their story. It was not complicated with character baggage and problems. It was a great quick read with the perfect story in less than 40 pages. I Want to read more from this new author.
Coming right off of holiday entertaining, this was the perfect time for me to read this delightful novella. It was nice to read about someone else's entertaining dilemmas! Haha! I can so relate to being an under appreciated personal assistant, too! While this is a light, quick read, the story is more than complete and totally believable. Often novellas are "jump right into bed" stories that either are totally unrealistic or leave you feeling that the characters are kinda smutty. Tony and Sonia were perfectly matched, sweet, normal, and I definitely felt the chemistry between them.
When Sonia’s boss asked her to organize a dinner party for a highly select group of important shareholders, she knew this was her big chance. A personal assistant, she knew she could be much more of an asset than a simple copy-girl and coffee acquirer. Months of careful planning later, she’d booked and decorated the restaurant Mangia carefully and all was ready. The chef and part-owner of Mangia, Tony Mancinni, was a delicious sight and great help to her. But on the big night when the food order deliveries were mixed up Sonia and Tony need to work together in the kitchen, and things get a little steamy. As a massive fan of cooking shows and cozy mysteries that involve cooking, I found this chemistry-heavy romance set in the restaurant kitchen a lovely read. The characters are interesting and fresh and kept me turning the pages. I must admit, I found Tony’s diatribe to his poor delivery person a little over the top and embarrassing. While his anger at the mistake at such a critical point was understandable, I felt perhaps the writer had decided his Italian temper might have gotten the best of him, or maybe he’s just a volatile chef. His soft spot for Sonia, however, kept any negative characteristics mostly under wraps. Even with this temperamental outburst it all somehow seemed to mesh well and create a partly funny, partly sexy romance that will have you salivating. I found Sonia’s distraction while she and Tony make the Italian wedding soup also quite amusing. I thought the fact she could seem to worry her job was on the line but still thinking about “sucking something” simultaneously not quite realistic. Sonia might have no real talent in the kitchen, but with Tony to guide her she willingly follows where his hands (and ass and lips) lead. While there was plenty of chemistry between Tony and Sonia, they certainly burn up the sheets later on. The attraction between Sonia and Tony though felt solid and believable to me and the sex was steamy and well written. This is a well-cooked story and sure to appeal to some readers. If you can check your brain at the door, grab a glass of wine or bubbly and relax enough to just go with the flow, this is a story I think you should give a try. There’s plenty of chemistry and raunchy sex and enough good ingredients I think plenty of people should give it a taste.
This was a perfect little pick me up, short story. The author does a great job with creating characters that are not overly complex , but still makes the reader feel like they know and are interested in the characters. The story is well balanced without any loose ends when finished and I love the interactions and intimate scenes between Sonia and Tony. This was one of those rare short stories that leaves you as satisfied as a full length novel.