Title: The Chocolate Promise
Author: Josephine Moon
Genre: Women’s Fiction
Opens: …It was Thursday, Holy Thursday to be exact – the day before the four-day Easter weekend, which also included the Evendale garden expo on Saturday – and the Chocolate Apothecary was a bubbling pot of activity…
Blurb: Christmas Livingstone has made up 10 rules for happiness including items such as nurturing her senses every day, doing what she loves, and sharing joy with others. However as the book opens we learn her most important rule for happiness is her number 10 rule – ‘Absolutely no romantic relationships’.
My Thoughts: Last year I read Josephine Moon’s debut novel The Tea Chest and I really, really enjoyed it – THE CHOCOLATE PROMISE is even better – I loved it
Christmas left the hectic life of a PR in Sydney and a broken heart and has moved to Tasmania. What prompted this move is not revealed at the start of the story but the past has been locked away where it can’t hurt anymore and now she has a new life making beautiful gourmet chocolate treats in her old-fashioned shop ‘The Chocolate Apothecary’. In her spare time she acts as a fairy godmother by trying to help people who need it, such as a new washing machine for a stay at home mum with little money – and assist a gentleman to propose to the one he loves.
Life is good for Christmas then a few events shatter her carefully created equilibrium. Firstly her best friend enters her into a competition to win a week-long scholarship course with a world-renowned French chocolatier IN FRANCE!! And she discovers she has won it. Almost the very same day a good-looking botanist, Lincoln, turns up in her shop to buy chocolates for his grandmother and sets Christmas’s heart pounding – as well as his. Turns out he home between jobs and is writing a book on cacao trees. His publisher thinks it may possibly be a bit dry in tone aka boring, and advises him to find a co-writer whose passion is chocolate. Well it just has to be Christmas – her passion for chocolate is extreme – her knowledge of processes not botanical surpasses just peeling off the paper and biting in. Christmas is certain there is healing property in chocolate – especially if it’s mixed with essential oils and herbs. Both Lincoln and Christmas have hurt in their past – neither is looking for a relationship – but the power of chocolate works in mysterious ways and it takes a trip half way around the world before the two realise what’s right in front of them.
I spent the Easter break reading this and munching dark chocolate Easter eggs and a glass, or two, of sweet fortified Tokay. Well written, well researched and with believable characters – although some were certainly oddballs. THE CHOCOLATE PROMISE has humour, sadness, love and misunderstandings. Then there are well-meaning friends and family determined to help the relationship along, there is also an abandoned mutt with an important part to play. I immersed myself in THE CHOCOLATE PROMISE and can’t wait for her next one.
In a recent blog post author Josephine Moon described her books like this:
“…I like to think of my books as being like a good chocolate brownie–rich, comforting, uplifting, but with a few chunky nuts to chew on…”
And that simple statement fits both of her books perfectly.
For more about the author – Click Here
A – Excellent Stuff – a real page turner and hard to put down. I carved out extra reading time just so I could finish it. This book got carted into the bathroom with me, read over meals, read at work, and/or kept me up late at night. If this author has more work, I will certainly read it.
With thanks to Allen & Unwin and the author for this copy to read and review. Allen & Unwin recommended retail price is $29.99.