Dining with Joy was about cooking show host Joy Ballard who can’t cook. She inherited her show from her father and her executive producer knew about her lack of cooking abilities, as well as a lot of the staff. The producer then sells the show to Allison Wild, who believes she can make Joy an even bigger star. Only problem? She doesn’t know Joy can’t cook. Enter Luke Redmond. Successful chef, owner of a failed Manhattan restaurant. During one failed live cook-off, Luke steps in to help her and saves the day. They begin working together. While Luke is a master at cooking, he is terrible on screen. (Joy is the opposite.) He soon finds out about Joy’s lack of cooking ability and proceeds to help her learn, keeping her secret. But sooner or later, the cat has to come out of the bag, right?
This was a sweet love story, with Christian themes. The main character was strong and someone I could identify with. Joy had a hard time trusting people, especially men. She had a hard time defining her worth, especially as she is a fraud in the foodie world. She doesn’t exactly know what she wants out of life, but wants to make her father proud, since she never seemed to connect with him while he was alive. There was something about Joy I deeply connected with, and was just rooting for her to take a chance on love. And Luke. Oh, Luke is one of the good guys. Another strong character with his own hang-ups, but someone who strives every day to make something more out of his life. I was incredibly sad when I finished this book because these two characters wouldn’t be a part of my life anymore.
This book is centered around Christian themes, such as what God has called you to do. But deep down, it is a love story. It’s one of those sweet love stories that makes you fall back in love with the process of falling in love. Character development is strong, as well as plot. While it wasn’t a book I couldn’t put down, it was one of those that sucked me right back in when I started reading it again. Rachel Hauck is quickly becoming one of my favorite authors. A part of me wishes there was a sequel, just so I could get a taste of Joy and Luke again.
Has there ever been a main character that you closely identified with?