Reviewed by Mandi
Shadowed Heart continues the story of Luc and Summer, who starred in The Chocolate Heart released last year. I absolutely adore this series by Laura Florand, but The Chocolate Heart is not my favorite book. However, I will read anything Laura Florand writes, so I picked up Shadowed Heart – and I loved it. It starts with Luc and Summer married for a few months. They have moved to the south of France where Luc has opened his own restaurant. Being that it is a new business and just being Luc, he works around the clock and is extremely passionate, intense and broody. Oh I love Florand’s heroes. Summer takes care of the accounting side and still tries to get volunteer teaching positions anywhere she can. Right at the beginning of the book, Summer finds out she is pregnant. While a baby is very much wanted by these two, it’s scary for them. For one thing, they are completely alone and lonely. They left their friends to move to open Luc’s restaurant. While they live on the Mediterranean in an amazing house, Summer doesn’t have any girlfriends. Luc works long hours, and Summer is left being pregnant and very nauseous and scared, all by herself.
Another scary prospect is what kind of parents they will be. Luc had a horrible father, an intense, no-nonsense foster-father and a mother that ran out on his family. Luc’s fear that Summer may flee from him and the baby is very, very real.
Oh, God, he wanted it so damn bad. He wanted to walk hand in hand in lavender fields behind four gamboling children with delicate features and black hair, everything in their lives as secure and happy as an afternoon in a hammock by a lagoon. He wanted it so badly he could taste it.
But to get to it, he first had to get through the part where she could run away. Not all women run away from motherhood. Stop it, you idiot. Stop it.
Although Summer comes from a ton of money, her father is not kind and her mother can pretty much be written off as well. But somehow, Summer and Luc have overcome their pasts and want to provide the very best for their kid. It’s just figuring out how to do that is the problem.
Luc’s anxiety over his impending fatherhood and taking care of Summer fills up this book. It felt as if it were burning through the pages. You just want to give Luc a hug and maybe some anti-anxiety medication and say, it will be all right. I thought Luc was always passionate and intense in the kitchen, but my god when he finds out SUmmer is pregnant, his fears and anxiety take a new high.
While these two try to calm their fears internally, it takes their friends – Sylvain, Cade, Jamie, Dom and Patrick to really calm them down and get them communicating. Patrick (hero from The Chocolate Temptation) truly steals the end of the book with Luc. Their bro-mance is something that made me feel all squishy inside. Patrick’s unending sarcastic remarks gave Luc some much-needed lightness in this book, and then his genuine happiness for Luc made my eyes a little misty.
I want to be Luc’s baby!
(That’s weird, right?)
Read Chocolate Heart and then read this. And then make sure you’ve read this entire series because it’s totally fabulous.