CAN'T STAND THE HEAT
While this glimpse into the workings of a high-class restaurant kitchen is fascinating, the heroine makes a poor journalist, and the story is a bit slow moving. In the end, you don't feel as if you've ever really gotten to know any of the characters.
When magazine food critic Miranda Wake has too much to drink at the publicity party for chef Adam Temple's new restaurant, he challenges her to spend a day in the kitchen with him and his crew. Miranda accepts, seeing it as an opportunity to get behind-the-scenes information for a book she's writing. When Miranda's magazine stretches her time in the kitchen to a month, her younger brother, Jess, comes to work at the restaurant with a secret he doesn't want to share.
As things heat up between Adam and Miranda, she begins to regret her book deal and questions her insider information source, but it takes a man with a gun to bring everything to a head. (ST. MARTIN'S, Sep., 368 pp., $6.99)