Books are food for my soul! Pull up a beach chair and stick your toes in the sand as the Jersey surf rolls in and out, now open your book and let your imagination take you away.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Better Than Chocolate by J. Lynn Rowan (Book Blast Event / Book Review / Contest Giveaway)

In association with Goddess Fish Promotions, Jersey Girl Book Reviews is pleased to host the virtual book blast event for Better Than Chocolate by author J. Lynn Rowan!

Book Review

Better Than Chocolate by J. Lynn Rowan
Book 1: Sweet Somethings Series
Publisher: Soul Mate Publishing
Publication Date: September 2, 2015
Format: eBook - 153 pages
               Kindle - 1224 KB 
Genre: Chick Lit / Romantic Comedy / Women's Fiction

Buy The Book: 

Disclaimer: I received a copy of the book from the author / publisher in exchange for my honest review and participation in a virtual book blast event hosted by Goddess Fish Promotions.

Book Description:

Carmella Sannarelli just found out that her best friend, Sadie Miller, has broken her engagement and is eloping on St. Croix. Though Carmella agrees to act as the maid of honor, she’s determined to find out what went wrong between her friends.

But she’s not counting on coming face to face with Ryan Wutkowski (the jilted fiancĂ©) on the plane, or with staying at his hotel during a two-day stopover in San Juan. They try to act like nothing’s changed. But Carmella’s totally flustered by the weird vibes Ryan sends her, as well as how tingly and off-kilter she feels every time he so much as looks at her.

Now Carmella can’t stop thinking about Ryan or his behavior, even though most of her time in St. Croix is taken up by pre-wedding activities and dodging advances from the womanizing best man. And she knows there’s more to the story behind Ryan and Sadie’s breakup than either of them will admit to her.

Especially after Ryan shows up at the rehearsal dinner and gets himself invited to the wedding...

Book Excerpt:

Ryan taps my arm. “Why are you on a flight to San Juan?”

I peer at him, my eyes narrow slits. “Why are you?”

A rhetorical question. Although his suit coat is probably in the overhead bin, safe inside a garment bag, his dress pants, crisp white button-down shirt, and Italian leather shoes tell me everything.

He answers anyway. “I have a conference over the next couple days. I have to go straight from the airport to my first meeting.”

The plane levels out, as does my head, and I wriggle to sit up straight. “They could at least let you check into your hotel first.”

“Well, fortunately the conference is at my hotel.”

“It’s a pretty fast trip.” I press my face to the window glass, squinting against the glare.

He shifts in his seat. “I had some vacation time coming, so I extended the trip through the middle of next week.”

So he’s not the only one who decided on a Caribbean adventure in the wake of his and Sadie’s breakup. I close my eyes, glad I didn’t say it out loud.

“Carmella, why are you going to Puerto Rico by yourself?”

The advantages of having Ryan for a flight companion have just turned moot. There’s no way to avoid this discussion. The flight’s too long. “I’m on my way to St. Croix.”

There. I said it. Sort of.

“What’s in St. Croix?”

His voice is low, and when I glance at him, he looks away. His jaw shifts, his profile a stern mask.

“I think you already know,” I answer slowly.


My Book Review:

If you are looking for a delightful romantic story about best friends, an unexpected wedding, and a subtle attempt at matchmaking set on the tropical Caribbean islands of Puerto Rico and St Croix, then look no further, Better Than Chocolate is the book for you!

What could be better than chocolate? Hmmm ... that thought alone caught my attention when I read the description to this sassy tale. Author J. Lynn Rowan weaves a fun romantic story that follows the crazy journey that Carmella Sannarelli embarks on when best friend Sadie Miller informs her that she will be her Maid-of-Honor in the Caribbean island of St. Croix. But there is just one little thing ... Sadie used to be engaged to fellow best friend Ryan Wutkowski, that is until they suddenly break up and she takes off to the Caribbean where she meets wealthy Nelson Mattingly in flight, and a week later she is engaged to be married in three weeks! Phew ... did ya get that? Well, when Sadie tells Carmella about her plans, Carmella is astonished that her two best friends have broken up without telling her, plus the shock of the upcoming nuptials completely throws her for a loop. And if you think that is crazy, it's just the beginning ... Carmella and Ryan are unexpected seat mates on a flight to San Juan, where she has a two day layover and he is attending a conference. They catch up with each other ... it's just like old times ... but the mystery of the breakup still has Carmella confused. Things get even crazier when Carmella arrives in St. Croix and Sadie is up to her old matchmaking tricks when she introduces Carmella to Nelson's brother and best man Joshua, but Sadie's subtle matchmaking antics gets turned up a notch when Ryan suddenly arrives in St. Croix and joins in the wedding festivities. Hmm ... could an unexpected chance at finding one's true love really be better than chocolate?!

Better Than Chocolate is a thoroughly entertaining romantic tale that will keep the reader in stitches. Told in the first person narrative by sassy Carmella Sannarelli, the reader is transported along for the ride as Carmella embarks on a crazy journey of personal discovery, and an unexpected chance at finding true love.

This is a fast paced and fun novella that has engaging characters, humorous interactions and witty dialogue, flashbacks to the three best friends' relationship, and a sweet romance. The author provides the reader with a rich description of the tropical Caribbean island settings of San Juan and St. Croix, it makes you long for a little tropical adventure of your own. I really enjoyed following Carmella's journey, how the mystery behind Sadie and Ryan's breakup unfolds, and the swoon worthy sweet blossoming of a new romance that is so unexpected but oh so right, and maybe even better than chocolate (gasp)!

Better Than Chocolate is an enjoyable and lighthearted romance story that will leave a smile on your face.


About The Author

J. Lynn Rowan started writing stories as a small child, usually starring her favorite cartoon characters. Most of her work through middle and high school was filled with typical teenage angst and melodrama, and usually mirrored the books she loved to read. But eventually she found her own author’s voice and decided to seriously pursue a writing career.

Historical fiction remains J. Lynn’s “first love”, but she has enjoyed the journey to becoming an author of romance and chick lit. She is a member of Romance Writers of America, the Central New York Romance Writers, and the Historical Novel Society. She is also a teacher who tries to instill a love of learning, reading, and writing in her students.

When she’s not writing, J. Lynn enjoys travelling, gardening poorly but enthusiastically, studying various topics in American history for her own expertise, and channeling Julia Child every time she steps into the kitchen.

A native of Oswego, NY, she now lives in Charlotte, NC, with her own Romantic Hero of a husband and the most adorable baby on the planet.

Author Website 

Contest Giveaway

Win A $10 Amazon or B&N Gift Card

Author J. Lynn Rowan is awarding a $10 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn commenter via Rafflecopter.

Follow the tour and comment; the more you comment, the better your chances of winning.

The tour dates can be found here: 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Virtual Book Blast Event

Click on the above link for the list of event participants.


  1. Thanks for hosting me and for the kind review! I'll be at work all day but will check in this evening to answer any questions anyone may have.

    1. Thank you for the opportunity to host your book blast event. I loved reading this story, and I look forward to reading more! :)