If I fall in love with a book it’s for the story or for the characters. In this case, The Chocolate Thief by Laura Florand meets both of those expectations.
In a chocolate-covered nutshell, The Chocolate Thief, is a ‘hate to love’ tale of two opposites who only have one thing in common; their love of quality artisan chocolate.
Cade Corey is the heiress to one of America’s greatest chocolate families. Her family is involved in the giant “manufacturing for the masses” chocolate business, her family’s name is synonymous with the “.33 cent chocolate bar on sale at Walmart.”
On the other hand, Sylvain Marquis is the best chocolate artisan in France. The chocolate he creates, designs and perfects can run up to “$150 a pound” and can only be bought at his prestigious location in Paris.
Cade is on a chocolate mission. She wants to expand her families’ business to include a line of artisan chocolate, which would be more of the $30 chocolate bar variety, than the .33 cent bar variety that her family specializes in.
Against her families’ wishes, she travels to Paris in order to woo a chocolatier who would be willing to work with her business in order to make her chocolate dream come true. Of course, all of the Parisian chocolatiers take varying degrees of affront and are horrified at Cade’s business proposal. Most notably, Sylvain who humiliates Cade in front of all his employees. Not the cutest meetcute you can imagine.
There, the story begins, Cade and Sylvain running into each other serendipitously while glaring at each other, trading insults and of course, being mysteriously drawn to each other. Sparks fly, banter is exchanged resulting in a fun romp of a contemporary romance.
Paris provides the magical background to Cade’s chocolate adventure. And Florand knows exactly how to exploit the magic of the city and chocolate to the fullest. She gorgeously describes in detail, the city, the process of making chocolate, the pastries, the Parisian cafe food… her decadent description of all things edible always makes my stomach rumble and my fingers itch to book a long holiday to Paris.
My favorite parts of The Chocolate Thief has to be the well-written chemistry between Sylvain and Cade. I love how Cade pokes at Sylvain (the cafe scene in the beginning is one of my top favorites), and how easily Sylvain blushes. He’s a grown man who is successful in his business and attractive, but comes from a background where attention makes him blush – and he does so so charmingly. The inner dialogue that Cade shares with the reader is also a hoot to read – I laughed out loud a lot rereading this book.
The Chocolate Thief is basically a love letter to chocolate lovers everywhere. And as a chocolate and book lover – it’s always going to be highly rereadable.