Love in a Nutshell by Janet Evanovich & Dorien Kelly Love in a Nutshell by Dorien Kelly, Janet Evanovich
Narrator: Lorelei King
Series: Culhane Family #1
Published by Macmillan Audio on January 3, 2012
Source: Library
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Length: 6 hrs 37 mins
Format: Audiobook
Buy on Amazon
Add on Goodreads

Kate Appleton needs a job. Her husband has left her, she's been fired from her position as a magazine editor, and the only place she wants to go is to her parents' summer house, The Nutshell, in Keene's Harbor, Michigan. Kate's plan is to turn The Nutshell into a Bed and Breakfast. Problem is, she needs cash, and the only job she can land is less than savory. Matt Culhane wants Kate to spy on his brewery employees. Someone has been sabotaging his company, and Kate is just new enough in town that she can insert herself into Culhane's business and snoop around for him. If Kate finds the culprit, Matt will pay her a $20,000 bonus. Needless to say, Kate is highly motivated. But several problems present themselves. Kate despises beer. No one seems to trust her. And she is falling hard for her boss. Can these two smoke out a saboteur, save Kate's family home, and keep a killer from closing in...all while resisting their undeniable attraction to one another?

I’ve been having some good luck with light romances lately. Love in a Nutshell is just fun – and guess what, Kate and Matt are actually honest with each other, well more or less. They make a good couple – instant attraction but a few issues keeping them apart, like he’s her boss and owns the mortgage on her house, the one he had been planning to foreclose on. Matt is another almost -perfect guy, good business sense, sexy, protective of the people he cares about. Kate is a bit down on herself, but is making a go at starting a new life.

Love in a Nutshell has funny moments, a slow courtship between Matt and Kate as far as romances go, and some danger. It’s not a wonderful book, but it’s enjoyable. It’s definitely PG thanks to an overly possessive poodle, one of two dogs who are great characters in and of themselves.

The narrator does a good job differentiating the voices, although the voice she uses for one of Matt’s sisters just struck me as a little off, not enough to take me out of the story, just a bit jarring. Overall, though, her tone fits the story.

In addition to the romance, which works well, there’s the mystery of who’s sabotaging Matt’s business. That part was really just as good. There were some clues, but nothing the hit you over the head. The whodunit definitely made sense, as did the motive.

Romance, mystery, danger, cute dogs, a great small town. I think I’d like to visit Keene’s Harbor again. Actually I’ve realized I tend to like Evanovich’s books, except her Plum series, which just always annoys me.

About Dorien Kelly

New York Times Bestselling Author, recent empty nester, and general lover of any job that doesn’t require her to wear pantyhose…ever!

About Janet Evanovich

Janet Evanovich is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Stephanie Plum series, the Lizzy and Diesel series, twelve romance novels, the Alexandra Barnaby novels and Trouble Maker graphic novel, and How I Write: Secrets of a Bestselling Author, as well as the Fox and O’Hare series with co-author Lee Goldberg.