…we're keeping our name but expanding our offerings!
Baker Luke Henderson loves his job, and owning a bakery at Coogee Beach makes it even better. When he opens the shop before dawn, he hears the waves. When he walks along the beach after sunrise, he admires the surfers—one in particular: Cameron Brown. A chef and café owner, Cameron secretly watches Luke right back. When Luke proposes a business deal, Cameron seizes the chance to get close. But Cameron’s ideal man is physically perfect, and Luke’s awkward limp could be the flaw that fractures their romance.
This book had never been on my radar and the author is new to me, so I really didn’t have any expectations going into reading it. I’m not even sure what made me pick it up. But, I was so pleasantly surprised by the story.
Luke is a baker and takes great pride in his work and his little shop. In order to get some more business and exposure, he hopes to get his ‘goods’ (eyebrow waggle…heh) into Cameron’s high traffic cafe by the beach. Cameron also happens to be the surfer Luke has been lusting after during his morning walks. All of this is sweet-as-pie.
But there’s a twist.
Luke is disabled and walks with a severe limp. And here’s where the author does something really great. She doesn’t shy away from this. She doesn’t play around it and make it kinda ok. She makes it uncomfortable. And awkward. And emotional. Luke has lived a life of teasing and you can feel that…you can really sense all that he’s had to overcome, yet still can’t help but be affected by.
And the author also doesn’t take the easy way out with Cameron. Cameron feels turned off by it. He doesn’t want to deal with Luke after their first meeting. He tries to just forget him. And even as they progress in friendship-to-more, Cam’s insensitive asshole friends along with some hurtful social encounters all add to the challenges they have to face as a couple.
I found the main couple in Whitewater to be charming and I enjoyed the growth of their relationship. And though the story at it’s core is a bit formulaic (‘add angst here’, ‘add emotional moment here’) and some of the side characters a bit too…caricature-like, overall, I thought the book was sweet and entertaining.
If you want something not too taxing but with just a touch of emotion & angst, it’s a fun read. Plus Aussies and beaches. Yummm…