Kati has been taking care of her brother Patrick ever since their parents’ death. She used money from their inheritance to buy a little diner and gave each of them a 50/50 portion. But once again Patrick has taken off to a new, more exiting place and left Kati with the responsibility of runner the diner on her own. To top that off, one of his freeloading friends has stolen money from her leaving her two months behind on the mortgage.
Enter Lucas Kane. Kati doesn’t know why he has shown up in her diner but she does know she wants him gone. Any friend of Patrick’s is no friend of hers. Lucas is different though. Patrick has borrowed money from Lucas and put up his half of the diner as collateral. Kati cannot believe that Patrick has done this to her and to their diner but since the documents prove to be legally binding she has to find a way to work with Lucas.
I thought this book might be a funny give and take between Kati and Lucas but Kati is just a bit too cankerous right from the beginning. Lucas clearly has money and is willing to help her but she is too stubborn and bull-headed to accept anything. There are several scenes where Lucas steps in and instead of thanking him for the help, Kati just gets angry. And when Kati is angry it usually leads to a several paragraph rant about how awful Lucas must be and how unfair her life is.
The county health inspector comes on to Kati and says sleep with me or I will shut you down, Lucas saves the day and Kati yells at him telling him she can handle it on her own.
Their ancient stove is not working, Lucas buys and brand new one and Kati yells at him for keeping her up at night with the installation noise.
Lucas steps in and pays the two months of back mortgage and Kati gets angry because she doesn’t like being helped out.
Lucas sorts out a dispute between two of their regular customers and Kati is angry because he is stepping in on her turf; doing things that she should be doing.
After a while it just got old reading about Lucas trying to help and Kati pushing back at him. In some situations that back and forth can be funny but this one was just frustrating.
Eventually Katie lightens up but then Patrick’s returns and the big misunderstanding happens. Patrick owed Lucas money so when he finds out Lucas has stayed around the diner he freaks out. Kati jumps to the conclusion that Lucas is only there for the money, even though nothing he has done indicates that, and orders him out of the diner and out of her life. Once again we get an example of Kati being unyielding and not in a fun, back and forth way. Lucas makes a huge effort to get Kati back and all ends well but by that point I didn’t feel like she deserved the effort.
Overall, it wasn’t a bad book but I was way too frustrated with Kati to enjoy most of the by-play between the H/h. Final grade- C-
“A man, Kati,” he said firmly, tapping the end of her nose affectionately. “Try not to forget it.”
Astonishment widened her eyes as Luke turned and walked from the kitchen. As if in a trance, Kati lifted a hand to touch her swollen lips, feeling an unexpected quickening in her pulse. A man, her mind echoed, and she shook her head. How on Earth could she forget? But more importantly, how on Earth was she going to get rid of him?