North to You: Journey to the Heart #1 by Tif Marcelo

North to You: Journey to the Heart #1 by Tif Marcelo

Welcome to my stop for Debut Author Tif Marcelo and the first in her Journey to the Heart contemporary romance series. Please read on for my review and an excerpt, check out the tour stops to see what other readers thought, and don’t forget to enter the tour-wide giveaway where you could win a $25 Amazon gift card. But first

North to You

A wonderfully rich second chance romance with a foodie theme, Tif Marcelo brings us the story of Camille and Drew, some years after their first romance soured. Having had a restaurant that was on the edge of being the next big thing, refusing to serve one rowdy but well-known favorite sport hero left Camille with few options and a need to leave. Picking up her life with a busy and well-regarded food truck, she’s managing her work and her younger sister that she cares for, and little room is left for other things. But a chance encounter with her high school ex, back in town to help with his father’s Filipino restaurant: the two come face to face for the first time in ages. As direct competition to Drew’s family restaurant, there are choices: work on his relationship with family and shun and battle Camille and her truck, or take a chance at love with Camille once again.

I was so pleasantly surprised with this debut: Marcelo obviously knows her characters well, and she’s added scenery, smells and food to enliven and deepen the story’s impact. With both Camille and Andrew having a wonderful sense of family loyalty, determination and a never-say-die attitude toward achieving their dreams, they are perfectly suited, even as I felt that Camille would have known that the restaurant she is parking in front of (and taking business from) was also the family business of her newly reacquainted love interest.

Their early story is provided in flashback, and when you combine those sweet and innocent moments with the actual sparks that flash between them now, the cuteness overload on this one was high. While not without a few repeat issues and one thread that just got old guickly, the story was engaging, adorable and clever: clever enough that I’m curious to see what the next in the series will bring.

North to You: Journey to the Heart #1 by Tif Marcelo

Title: North to You
Author: TIf Marcelo
Series: Journey to the Heart #1
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Food / Recipes
Published by: Pocket Star
ISBN: 1501169483
Published on: 5 June, 2017
Format:eARC
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Pages: 300
Rated: four-half-stars
Heat: One FlameOne FlameHalf a Flame

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In this warmhearted and charming debut from Tif Marcelo, a food truck chef and her long lost Army love clash when they cross paths in San Francisco.

Camille Marino has got a full plate. As the sole guardian of her eighteen-year-old sister and the head chef and owner of a food truck, she’s used to life being a juggling act. With food to cook, social media accounts to manage, and a little sister to look after, she doesn’t have time for much else.

That is, until Drew Bautista walks back into her life.

Drew is Camille’s former high school crush and he returns to San Francisco to repair his relationship with his father before he ships out for deployment. By helping his father renovate his failing Filipino restaurant, he hopes to win back his respect. But when sparks fly between Drew and Camille—his father’s major competition and sworn enemy—Drew is conflicted. Should he join his father in the war against her food truck? Or surrender to the woman who’s given him a second chance at love?

A copy of this title was provided via Publisher via NetGalley for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.

 

 

Above the low hum of the traffic, the people, and the planes passing overhead, a bell chimes. Then two, then three. Soon, surround-sound church bells, signaling the start of the new day, sweep over the breadth of my view.

“Wow.” The music becomes the backdrop of the city I thought I knew. My eyes follow the path of Market Street and the twinkling outline of the Bay Bridge. It scans to the Transamerica Building, which cuts the ombré of the night sky down to the yellow of the city lights. Sights now enhanced, brought to greater depth and meaning.

“Right?” he whispers next to me.

“Beautiful.”

“She is definitely beautiful.”

My breath hitches at Drew’s statement. He leans against the barrier, his back to the city lights. His eyes are solely on me.

This man and I know nothing about each other as adults except for what we revealed in the last hour. He knows nothing of my dreams and hopes. I don’t understand the life he’s chosen. And yet I’m bound to him with leftover feelings that are so innocent and pure, feelings I’m not sure where to place now that they’ve been pulled from memories packed away.

One thing is sure. Right now is perfect.

I approach him, place my hands on his chest.

He rests his fingers lightly on my waist. “Camille—”

I stop him with a kiss. Tonight has been crazy, magical, fuzzy, and weird, and I don’t want to think about consequences, my overloaded plate of responsibilities, of everything waiting for me down there, in the city below.

 

 

About TIf Marcelo

Tif Marcelo believes in and writes about heart-eyes romance, the strength of families, and the endurance of friendship. A veteran Army Nurse with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and a Master of Public Administration, she is a craft enthusiast, food-lover and the occasional half-marathon runner. As a military spouse, she has moved nine times, and this adventure shows in some of her free-spirited characters. Tif currently lives in the DC area with her own real life military hero and four children.

 

 

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