by Deirdre Martin

May 2009
ISBN: 978-0-425-22803-6
Reviewer Graphic Button Berkley
Mass Market Paperback

Natalie Bocuse loves her sister Vivi and has become fond of Vivi’s restaurant in Brooklyn. But Natalie wants more and she knows she will not find it in Brooklyn. Natalie wants to manage a restaurant and she has the talent to do it; she just needs to make the right connections.

Journalist Quinn O’Brien loves teasing the snobby Natalie. In fact, he is quite fond of just about everything about her, but he will not ask her out. Quinn lives for his job and somehow relationships just have a tendency of not working out for him. But he does manage to get Natalie hired at his family’s Irish pub, The Wild Hart, as a waitress until she finds her dream job.

Seeing Natalie every day after work makes it harder for Quinn to resist her. Despite her somewhat snippy attitude, they both love verbally sparring together and Quinn knows that there is a heart of gold underneath Natalie’s French attitude. But as they tentatively start to date, will Quinn be able to make time in his life for her, when he has the story of a lifetime on his hands, the boss from hell at his heels, and danger in the form of a mobster in the neighborhood?

With a Twist is a story about love’s rocky side. Natalie and Quinn both yearn for each other and both want to make their growing relationship work, but it is hard. Quinn is dedicated to his work but he finds happiness, fun, and humor in being with Natalie and he does not want to give that up, even as he seems to be self-sabotaging their relationship. Natalie is not perfect by any means either but she wants Quinn to put her first just once and that is not asking a lot.

Accompanied by a very interesting cast of secondary characters, including a parrot, Natalie and Quinn’s relationship plays out with realism and romance. It may be easy to get frustrated with this romance that seems to have a variety of starts and stops, but Deirdre Martin can make love’s foibles work for her characters. With a Twist is a refreshing contemporary romance that shows just how much work and effort goes into making true love more than just a phrase.

Reviewed in April 2009 by Sarah.

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