Spicing It Up
By Jodi
Aug 1, 2005 - 8:45:00 AM

Miriam Scott has never been very comfortable around people. Sharing her feelings is not her strong suit. Food became her passion early on. The fabulous dishes that she creates require attention to detail and a certain style to create. They never embarrass her publicly, and never ask how she is feeling. She has a fabulous job as head chef of a new restaurant, and a comfortable long standing relationship. She is content. That is until her boyfriend Travis breaks up with her on the grounds that she is too boring. She is not boring! and to prove it she, during a slightly tipsy pity party, writes a very racy cookbook to improve sexual relations. How's that for not boring? There is one little hitch to her new found celebrity. Normally she is as far from risque as possible. Due to the upcoming promotional appearances, her publishers has hired an image consultant to help her spiff up and become, at least for the fans, everyone's ideal naughty author.

Dylan Kincaid is surprised and delighted by Miriam. She behaves nothing like the sexual diva that her book led him to believe. His father is a has-been teen heartthrob musician, and his mother is a once flawless model who owned the runways in her time. He's had enough of celebrities to last him a lifetime. Miriam is a breath of fresh air in a jaded business. When Six Course Seduction gains more notoriety than anyone predicted, she is poised on the brink of a complete lifestyle change. Is this what she wants, or does peer-pressure rear its ugly head, forcing her to get caught up in the undercurrent of fame and celebrity?

Dylan is used to women with style and flare; flamboyant starlets are what he has always known. Will he still be in love with Miriam Scott, gourmet chef, who had nothing but slacks and sweaters in her closet until he arrived? Or does he expect the sensual public persona that he helped mold?

SPICING IT UP is a deliciously written novel, full of interesting characters, and a slap stick plot that will keep you in stitches. Miriam's humiliation at the hands of her boisterous family has been a lifetime in the making. She has never been one to share her feelings with anyone, has never felt the uncontrollable urge to work the topic of breastfeeding into a conversation in the grocery line. Her family is ecstatic that she is finally opening up and shown her true colors. Problem is that Six Course Seduction is the product of a wounded ego, and too much tequila. Miriam struggles to find herself amongst plenty of fantastic food, harrowing trips to the dreaded department store, and ulcer inducing television appearances. Ms. Michaels' wicked sense of humor, and masochistic urge to place Miriam in the most socially uncomfortable predicaments, is a source of unending amusement for the reader. I couldn't wait to see what Miriam would come up with next, and have to admit to a rather unladylike urge to see Travis get his comeuppance. Miriam's tentative attempts at friendship with her neighbor Amanda are sweet and it is interesting to see the relationship develop. Dylan is a law unto himself. In an unusual occupation for a man, his eye for what works with Miriam's life is uncanny. I was unsure what his decision would be until the last few pages of the book. This example of Ms. Michaels' fabulous imagination, and way with words leaves me with only one thing to say--MORE, MORE.

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