Make It Sweet Review: Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth

by Theja Pk
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iPhone showing make it sweet audiobook by Kristen Callihan laying on top of wooden table

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Last updated on April 12th, 2024

In this review, we’ll take a look at Make It Sweet by Kristen Callihan – an authentic and endearing love story about healing and learning to trust someone else with the broken pieces of yourself.

Combining lovable characters and mouthwatering pastries, the novel reminds us to stay open to new possibilities when life leads us down a different path.

Make It Sweet – Kristen Callihan

4.5 out of 5
book cover of make it sweet by Kristen callihan featuring a couple within the book's title

GENRE: Contemporary romance
PUB DATE: February 23, 2021
TROPE: grumpy/sunshine

An authentic and endearing love story about healing and learning to trust someone else with the broken pieces of yourself.

Characters
5 out of 5
Plot
4 out of 5
Writing
5 out of 5
Overall Enjoyment
4 out of 5

Pros

lovable, authentic characters

chemistry between MCs

delicious pastries

witty banter

Cons

slow burn got boring in some parts

Table of contents

Synopsis

Life for Emma isn’t good. The world knows her as Princess Anya on Dark Castle, but then her character gets the axe―literally. The cherry on top is finding her boyfriend in bed with another woman. She needs a break, and sanctuary comes in the form of Rosemont, a gorgeous estate in California promising rest and relaxation.

Then she meets the owner’s equally gorgeous grandson, ex–hockey player and current recluse Lucian Osmond, and she sees her own pain and yearning reflected in his eyes.

He’s charming when he wants to be but also secretive and gruff, with protective walls as thick as Emma’s own. Despite a growing attraction, they avoid each other.

But then there’s an impromptu nighttime skinny-dip, and Lucian’s luscious homemade tarts and cream cakes start arriving at Emma’s door, tempting her to taste life again…

In trying to stay apart, they only grow closer―and their broken pieces just might fit together and make them whole.

Characters

Main Characters

The witty banter between both MCs was hilarious and had me smiling so many times. Listening to how they challenged and kept each other on their toes was entertaining.

What makes Lucian and Emma’s love story so endearing is how it started as simple companionship – two broken souls learning to heal in their own way but with the help of each other.

There were no ulterior motives that initiated their friendship, and this allowed them to be completely themselves.

Their romance isn’t smooth, but you can’t miss their chemistry and the longing they have to get to know each other better.

They helped each other to let their guard down in such a beautiful way that you can’t help but root for their happily ever after. 

EMMA is sassy, sharp, and full of heart. She stands up for herself when she needs to but is also not afraid to be vulnerable. 

LUCIAN is an ex-athlete with a passion for baking. He fortifies his emotions behind a steel wall after losing everything to a sports-related injury.

I hadn’t thrown a punch in years, but for her, I’d fight the world.”

The author did a great job of showing the thought process of someone whose dreams were ripped from their hands and the struggle to accept a new unknown future. I liked that he wasn’t the stereotypical athlete allowing the baking to show a softer side to him.

Despite being the grumpy one, he was never rude or disrespectful (which is a pet peeve of mine when it comes to grumpy/sunshine tropes). 

Side Characters

My favorite side character is Lucian’s meddling GRANDMOTHER. She doles out wisdom throughout the book and keeps everyone well-behaved without ever lifting a finger.

She’s such a charming character that it’s hard to finish the book without her leaving a lasting impression on you. 

Plot

This small town romance story progressed smoothly as the MCs learned to trust each other. It is a slow burn, but there were instances when it was really slow, and I got a bit bored. But the build of sexual tension between the MCs made for an entertaining read and was worth the wait when they finally gave in. 

The ending, though predictable, was not done in an obvious way. And Lucian’s character development was done superbly. Callihan had him figure things out on his own without the pressure and influence of the other characters, which made the conflict resolution that much more satisfying.

Writing

The detailed descriptions of the pastries in this book made me hungry so many times.

And as someone who watches many baking shows, I could recognize most of the desserts they were talking about, which made for a great immersive experience.

Even if you’re not someone who enjoys or knows a lot about pastries, this book may just convert you into a pastry lover.

Ps. This is a great book for those who like spicy scenes (moderate level). 

Best Quotes

  • As with life, food is meant to be enjoyed. Never go to war with it for we rarely win.
  • It doesn’t matter how far you go, you’ll always be where your heart is.
  • Failure is simply opportunity in disguise.

“The more I get to know you, the more beautiful you are to me.

  • “Now, all I could think was “Where have you been all this time?” I’d missed her before I’d even known her.” 
  • The worst thing about someone destroying your trust was that it became harder to give it to someone new.
  • To live is to adapt. We’re constantly reinventing ourselves. Don’t be afraid of failure or change; it means you’re alive.

Conclusion

Make it sweet is an emotional, heartwarming story with as much sweetness as the pastries mentioned. If you have a sweet tooth for delicious French pastries and adore real and honest characters, then definitely give this one a try.

Enjoyed this review? Then, add ‘Make It Sweet’ to your TBR. And if you have already read this book and have some thoughts to share, drop them in the comments below. I would love to hear them!

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