Digging Up Love by Chandra Blumberg

March 16th, 2022 Kimberly Guest Post, Review 14 Comments

16th Mar

Sophia Rose is joining us today with Digging Up Love by Chandra Blumberg, the first in the Taste of Love contemporary romance series. Foodie lovers gather round and check out her review.

Digging Up Love by Chandra Blumberg
Digging Up Love
by Chandra Blumberg
Source: Publisher
Purchase*: Amazon | Audible *affiliate
Rating: One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star
Heat Level: One FlameOne Flame

From debut author Chandra Blumberg comes a playful, heartfelt romance about chasing your dreams and finding love in the process.

Alisha Blake works her magic in the kitchen, creating delectable desserts for her grandfather’s restaurant in rural Illinois. Though Alisha relishes the close relationship she has with her family, she can’t help but dream about opening a cookie shop in Chicago. She may be a small-town baker, but Alisha has big ambitions.

Then a dinosaur bone turns up in her grandparents’ backyard. When paleontologist Quentin Harris arrives to see the discovery for himself, he’s hoping that the fossil will distract him from a recent painful breakup. Instead, he finds Alisha—and sparks fly. The big-city academic and the hometown baker seem destined for a happily ever after.

But Alisha is scared to fall in love. And Quentin’s trying to make a name for himself in a competitive field, which gets even more complicated when the press shows up at the dig site. For love to prevail, the two may have to put old bones aside—and focus on the future.

Sophia Rose’s Review

The sparks fly when a paleontologist and a baker square off and have to figure out how to navigate family expectations, past hurts, and chasing their own dreams along with that pesky bone of contention called love. I was eager for a light and fun, contemporary romance by a new to me author and it didn’t hurt that a dinosaur bones discovery in the backyard is what gets it all started.

Alisha Blake has been working at her granddad’s barbecue restaurant and helping care for her grandmother feeling she owes them for raising her and her sister after her parents were gone, but lately she has felt the urge to see her own dream of opening a cookie bakery come into being. She’s on the point of presenting her plan to her grandparents when her granddad reinforces her place at the restaurant and she keeps silent about her baking dreams once again and chooses to keep the status quo. Meanwhile, her sister Simone is working her career in the city and nagging her about her lack of dating life which Alisha needs no reminders about.  If she’s honest, she feels safer focusing on family and job because a commitment to love scares her.

Dr. Quentin Harris gets the assignment from his boss in the department to head out to western Illinois and check out the big bone the locals claim is a dinosaur. He’s spent fifteen years working hard at his career and is an assistant professor in a field he loves, but his family thinks he’s wasting his time since his career doesn’t pull in the big bucks and it still hurts that his fiancée left him for her career abroad.  Quentin is eager to investigate the bones, but one glimpse of Alisha standing in his dig pit and his attention is decidedly split between the discovery and the attraction between them.

Digging for Love is a blend of light and flirty with some angsty romance and deeper conflicts with family that gave some depth to the story. I loved that his research got some front and center time at the dig, as did her delicious baking skills. It was a fun combo as a backdrop for the romance. I thought the small town setting was painted well down to the gossipy neighbor and Alisha’s friendships and the one-signal main street, but it was also neat to catch some scenes in the city and along the shore as well.  The situation with their respective families pushing them and not taking into account their wants and dreams out of misplaced sense of love had me sympathizing and cheering them on from the get-go.

Reading easy and swiftly for the most part, there were a few dragging moments to the pacing.  Partly, this is because one of the big recurring conflicts is the fact that lack of communication was constantly happening between the romance pair and between them and their family members, which would cause unnecessary ansty moments as I saw it. Without it, this story would have been over in short order. They needed to have honest conversations with their families and with each other, but I could appreciate that the reason they didn’t was because that involved being honest with themselves first. I liked both Alisha and Quentin and, for all their lack of communication, I thought they were a fun pair. They had some good flirty dialogue moments, particularly in texts and encounters. The romance is more spicy than full-on steam. They do tend to take two steps forward and three frustrating steps backward often enough, so the reader has to show great patience to see them through to the end when they finally get on the right track.

In summary, this debut book offered some bright moments and a few that weren’t. It met my expectation level and hit the right tone with the banter and fun career backgrounds. I think some might enjoy this one more than others because of the conflict type, but I’m pretty sure that most would adore having the hero be a paleontologist and the heroine a baker in this slightly spicy light contemporary romance. 

Amazon | Audible

About Chandra Blumberg

Chandra Blumberg

Chandra Blumberg writes funny, heartwarming love stories about characters that feel real and relatable. When it comes to her writing process, getting to that happily ever after is half the fun. Born and raised in Michigan, Chandra moved to the Chicago area after majoring in English at Michigan State University. When she’s not writing, she enjoys lifting heavy barbells at the gym, making a mess of the kitchen while baking alongside her four kids, and traveling with her family.

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About Sophia Rose

Sophia Rose

Sophia is a quiet though curious gal who dabbles in cooking, book reviewing, and gardening. Encouraged and supported by an incredible man and loving family. A Northern Californian transplant to the Great Lakes Region of the US. Lover of Jane Austen, Baseball, Cats, Scooby Doo, and Chocolate.

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About Kimberly
Kimberly is a coffee loving book addict who reads and listens to fictional stories in all genres. Whovian, Ravenclaw, Howler and proud Nonna. She owns and manages Caffeinated PR. The coffee is always on and she is ready to chat. Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

14 Responses to “Digging Up Love by Chandra Blumberg”

  1. Wendy

    You had me at “paleontologist and a baker”. It sounds so interesting, fun, and hunger-inducing! Nice review, Sophie!

    • Sophia Rose

      I don’t think I’ve ever read a romance with a dinosaur guy so that was fun, but yes, these two really needed to just talk. I wanted to drop them down in one of Quentin’s dig holes and not let them out until they got it all hashed out. 🙂

    • Sophia Rose

      Haha, yes! It does sound like the opening liner. They can get funny with their banter in this one, too. I thought it was splendid as a debut effort.

    • Sophia Rose

      It was fun and had enough oomph to overlook the lack of communication times. Yes, their backgrounds were definitely a hit with me, too.