Hello and good afternoon my lovely readers,
I am so happy to have you here today. ❤
I am deeply humbled and overjoyed to have special guests here today. Who are my precious guests you want to know? *drumm roll*
Well, without further ado I want to reveal that I have Adriana Herrera’s characters Jude and Nesto here as guests on my blog. ❤
You’ve read right! The charming protagonists of Adriana Herrera’s American Dreamer stopped by and answered a few questions I had, and I am super happy to share them with you! 😀
Prepare yourself for lots of shenanigans, love and laughter. :3 ❤
This post also includes my review and below I have listed the Spotify playlist Adriana has put together for her amazing title. I assure you the songs make you move. 😀
Linked is also an excerpt for you to read, to get you ready for the book. 😉 But be warned: this book is *chef’s kiss*.
Happy reading. 🙂
Title: American Dreamer
Series: Dreamers # 1
Author: Adriana Herrera
Genre: M/M Romance, Contemporary, Food Truck Romance
Release Date: March 4, 2019 (ebook & audiobook)
March 26, 2019 (print)
Publisher: Carina Press
Length: 94.000 words / 352 pages
Add to you bookshelf:
(click on this button or this link)
Harlequin (eBook) | Harlequin (print)
No one ever said big dreams come easy
For Nesto Vasquez, moving his Afro-Caribbean food truck from New York City to the wilds of Upstate New York is a huge gamble. If it works? He’ll be a big fish in a little pond. If it doesn’t? He’ll have to give up the hustle and return to the day job he hates. He’s got six months to make it happen—the last thing he needs is a distraction.
Jude Fuller is proud of the life he’s built on the banks of Cayuga Lake. He has a job he loves and good friends. It’s safe. It’s quiet. And it’s damn lonely. Until he tries Ithaca’s most-talked-about new lunch spot and works up the courage to flirt with the handsome owner. Soon he can’t get enough—of Nesto’s food or of Nesto. For the first time in his life, Jude can finally taste the kind of happiness that’s always been just out of reach.
An opportunity too good to pass up could mean a way to stay together and an incredible future for them both…if Nesto can remember happiness isn’t always measured by business success. And if Jude can overcome his past and trust his man will never let him down.
One-click with confidence. This title is part of the Carina Press Romance Promise : all the romance you’re looking for with an HEA/HFN. It’s a promise!
This book is approximately 94,000 words
Read an excerpt here (click logo or the link).
(Dreamers # 2)
with Nesto & Jude from Adriana Herrera’s American Dreamer
Welcome, my lovely readers. Happy to have you here. Today I have some special guests on my blog. I beyond thrilled and I hope you are as excited to hear the answers to the questions I’ve asked Nesto and Jude from Adriana Herrera’s American Dreamer.
Welcome Jude and Nesto. 🙂 And of course a warm welcome to author Adriana Herrera for keeping an eye on them. 😉
Jude: Thanks for having us.
Nesto: Babe, did you bring the burritos I made for her?
Jude: What? No, Nesto! I didn’t bring burritos. *smiles pleasantly at M* So you were saying?
Nesto, you recently moved from New York City, from the Bronx, to Upstate New York, Ithaca, to be precise.
Since you now live in Ithaca for a while what do you cherish most from this place? And yeah, we know Jude has a lot to do to make it attractive for you. *smirks* 😀
But what are you dearly missing from NYC you can’t replace in Ithaca?
Nesto: Hmmmm…*laughs as he puts an arms around Jude* I miss the food, there’s just so much variety there and I always like to know what the competition is up to and of course having the GA crew closer. *looks over at Jude who is placidly looking at Nesto* But I can always go down for a few days and see the guys and hit up some of my favorite spots. *laughs* Besides those assholes are here all the time crashing at our place and eating all my food. *kisses Jude firmly on the lips and tightens an arm around his boyfriend’s shoulder.* But I got everything I need right here.
*Jude smiles and shakes his head, a small grin on is lips* He misses all the delivery apps! *eyeroll*
*Nesto bursts out laughing.* You got me there. Delivery game up here is pretty sad.
Nesto, speaking of your food truck and food in general; can you suggest a newbie like me what the best places are to eat (besides your food truck, obviously ;)?
Also, Jude and Adriana, can you maybe chime in? 🙂
Nesto: You want to keep an eyes for whatever’s happening food wise in gas stations. *holds up hand at Jude’s doubtful expression.* I’m serious, babe. Not like pizza in or old hot dogs, but if you’re happen to hit up a gas station and there’s like a taco stand or a BBQ situation there. GET THE FOOD. Now…there is one rule. It’s gotta be authentic. *he lifts a shoulder* A lot of immigrants will get in a gas station because the rent is cheaper and serving up bomb food.
Jude: *smiles at Nesto* He’s right, we have had some surprisingly amazing food in gas stations. My favorite, other than OuNYe of course. *that gets him a kiss on the cheek from Nesto* Is a place in New York we went to a few months ago, it’s a Venezuelan arepa place. It’s like a cornmeal patty that they fill with cheese, beans, avocado. SO GOOD.
Adriana: I can’t pick one! Although lately I’ve been partial to an ice cream truck that as really interesting flavors down in the Lower East Side of Manhattan. They have Mango Sticky Rice one that is amazing.
A question for both of you, Jude and Nesto – and we stick to the food topic for a while: what is your favorite food? We know Nesto loves to cook and to make Jude happy with it. But what is your favorite dish, Nesto, Jude – your special comfort food? 🙂
Jude: Nesto is going to roll his eyes at this one *Nesto proceeds to do exactly that.*
Nesto: I know what he’s going to say, and it’s my mother’s influence.
Jude: *laughs* Your mother is an amazing influence on me, and that’s not true. *makes a big show of fixing his cardigan’s sleeves.* My current favorite food is Los Tres Golpes.
Nesto: *grins* See, I knew it.
Jude: Well it is. Tres Golpes is a traditional Dominican breakfast. It’s like a boiled plantain mash, which is soooooooo good. And serve it with three toppings. Fried cheese, salami and eggs, and these yummy pickled onions. It’s the best, and Nesto doesn’t make it nearly enough for me.
Nesto: You know, I’ll do anything you want, papi, all you need to do is ask. I… *there is an interesting exchange of looks and Jude finally clears his throat*
Nesto: Sancocho. It’s this Dominican stew with mad meat in it. It’s really good, but it takes forever to make. It’s something we eat for New Year’s or when there’s a big celebration. *he turns to Jude again* Like when we had our housewarming, my mom made one for us.
We’re getting a bit cozy, if you don’t mind. 😀 *grins* Let our readers get to know you a bit better.
Nesto, tell us a bit about your close relationship with your friends, with the crew: Camilo, Juan Pablo and Patrice. We get a bit to know how you met. But how do you stay in contact, especially now when you’re busy with your food truck? Also tell us how your days normally look like when you hang out with the crew. 😀
Did the dynamic changed since you’ve Jude as partner and they’ve met him?
Nesto: Nah…We’re still tight as ever. I mean we can’t see each other as much, but whenever we’re together it’s still the same. Camilo’s always blowing up my phone about something. *laughs* and J and Patrice get roped into his drama too.
Jude: I like having his friends around. They like my jokes.
Nesto: *nods and kissed Jude on the head* That’s because you’re jokes are bomb.
Jude, how was it to be introduced to Nesto’s circle of friends and family? What were your first thoughts about Nesto’s loud but caring group of people? 🙂
Jude: I love them and felt like I was part of the family from the first moment. My best friend Carmen is Dominican so I was a little bit familiar with the food and such, and well everyone in Nesto’s life is so loving. I feel right at home. I’ve also been spending more time with my niece and nephew, who love coming to visit and that’s been nice too.
Okay, we’re digging (even) deeper with our questions.
Nesto and Jude, I’d love to know what you dreams were when you were kids?
Did you achieve your hopes and dreams? 🙂
Jude: Mostly I wanted to be around books *laughs* and felt like I had a place where I belonged, and I have that and much more so I would say yes.
Nesto: *groans* Why do have to get me in my feelings like that, babe? Honestly when I was like a little kid…I wanted to be a baseball player.
Jude: *interrupts* I didn’t know that!
Nesto: It’s sort of the default for Dominican boys. I mean I wasn’t very good at it, so it didn’t last very long. I did always love to be in the kitchen with my mom, but in Dominican culture boys aren’t exactly encouraged to learn to cook. My mom of course did her own thing and when she saw I liked it she started teaching me. But I never really thought about it as a career. That happened later.
What is a perfect date for you both?
How do you guys spend a perfect day (together)?
Jude: Honestly just being home with Nesto is great. But there are a few restaurants on the lake that we like.
Nesto: I like to find ways to surprise him. From the first time I saw it, I’ve been addicted to making Jude smile, and I’ve figured out that surprises get me a lot of them.
Jude: See how he is! It’s like his favorite hobby is making me cry in public!
Aww, you guys. *clutches chest and smiles lovely at them*
What do you love/cherish most about the other person, about your partner?
Jude: That he’s such a devoted son and friend. He loves where he comes from and he really treasures his people.
Nesto: Damn Jude, you’re just out for blood today.
Nesto: Everything. He’s my everything and even though my dumb ass almost really fucking blew it, I’m so glad he took pity on me.
*can’t contain a big smile*
What is your biggest fear? What is your greatest flaw?
Nesto: To let down my people. And flaw, not slowing down. I’ve had to learn to not let my goals fuck with my life.
Jude: Feeling like I don’t have anyone. I’m still learning to ask for what I want.
Food and music are a huge thing in your lives. Nesto, it seems your truck isn’t running without music while you work, and Jude, you surprised Nesto and his friends with knowing some great artists too – and were actually able to sing along the songs! 😀
Can you tell what it means to be surrounded by those artists? You have in fact a great piece of art in your flat.
And Jude, what is it for you to learn about all these artists?
Nesto: I grew up on old-school merengue, salsa and bachata. My mom always had it playing in the house, especially when she was cooking, so now I always have it one when I’m working too. Merengue and bachata especially because those are both from DR, so you know we got a lot of favorites.
Jude: I love reading about artists lives and how their creative process works. At home my favorite piece is a print from Kerry James Marshall, who is an African-American painter. His work has had a big impact on me.
Also, speaking of music: who of you is the better dancer? Who can party the hardest? 😀 *smirk* (I know this might be a loaded question :D)
Nesto: *laughs* Well I’m Dominican, so OBVIOUSLY I can outdance most people.
Jude: Show off.
Nesto: Where’s the lie? Nah, I’m just joking. Jude can keep up with me, he’s been getting lessons from Carmen and he’s gotten really good.
Wow, fun times are sadly over. We’re at the end of the interview. That’s it. 🙂 Thank you so much for being my guests on my blog and for being here today. It was so much fun. 🙂 And thank you, Adriana for allowing these guys to come out and also chiming in too. 😀 Any last words?
Nesto: Don’t forget to stop by OuNYe and grab some food.
Jude: Oh my God, Nesto.
Nesto: What? She might be hungry?
*laughs* Thank you so much, you three! 😀
You loved that interview? 😀 Awesome!
But I’m not done yet. I have a link for the playlist Adriana put together for her amazing book.
Check the list out on Spotify.
Also check my review out below. 🙂
American Dreamer by Adriana Herrera
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
*~~*ARC kindly provided by the author to me in exchange for an honest review *~~*
From the moment I heard about the book on Twitter, when I saw glimpses of this over the span of weeks until the release day I was hooked by the premise of this book and the unique romance between Jude and Nesto.
Food-truck romances are always a soft spot for me and this combined with the fact that Jude is working in a library was the extra cherry on top of the brim-full, extravagant, delicious sundea I already got with this book – metaphorically speaking. ❤
The moment I met Jude and Nesto I was bewitched. I loved the amazing, unique, sweet and sexy characters. In fact they are the most amazing and artistically fleshed out characters I’ve ever had the pleasure to meet.
Jude and Nesto are so awesome, yet they aren’t flawless – and that’s what makes them outstanding. They felt alive the whole time during the book. Never like carbon copies of clichéd, stereotype chracters.
Sure, Nesto is a fullblood Dominican, who’s proud of his heritage, his family and friends and has a boisterous manner and is (l)out[sic!] and proud about his sexuality – never hides what he thinks. With a heart of gold he is devoted and family is one of the most important things in life, next to his work. He’s truly a workaholic in the most positive way, a born salesman who knows how to present and deliver his food to the people. In ways he’s a crowd puller. He has to be as the owner of a successful foodtruck he takes with him to Ithaca, his new home, away from his former domain, the Bronx.
Similar in achieving his hopes and dreams Jude is working tireless on making a library truck into reality and his efforts to bring disadvantaged, poor(er) children the needed literature to educate themselves and experience the same joy he feels whenever he opens a book.
With every of their actions the characters felt palpable on every page and they were so vivid and lovely. ❤ True, in order to have a counterbalance to it, we have side characters like Misty, who’s the personificated hate againt people of color, shows exactly all the hurtful behaviour of those vile people, but without doubt, even if she’s almost unbearable, she’s a characters who’s necessary for the book and well put into the story.
Another group of unlikable characters we have with Jude’s family, especially Jude’s brother but also his sister is emotionally abusing him in my opinion and it’s hurtful to watch to see him so suffer but also doing certain things out of (still feeling) love for them as well as obligation. At this point I want to stress out to check out my CW/TW below and be cautious while reading. The episodes with Jude’s family were especially heartbreaking.
The book wouldn’t be so fantastic if there weren’t people in Nesto’s and Jude’s corner who show that with friends (who are a found family) and loving family members the world can be a better place, they make it for them to a special corner.
Adriana Herrera is believable in her portrait of the characters, including the side and suporting characters. You’re curious to learn more about them, want to read more about them – and in the case of Nesto’s three friends we are blessed with their own stories. Prepare to read more stories full of HEAs. I am beyond excited.
This book is real, it’s authentic and the food descriptions are making you craving for it that’s almost unbearable. Of course the best books are those who hook you emotionally, though it might be that some parts are too heavy for some readers. So, again, please be cautious and read the CW/TW listed below.
– the death of a side/minor character due to cancer
– homophobia/homophobic, violent actions of one of the MC’s family members based on religious beliefs
– rascism and (attempted) blackmail
This book deserves the full 5 out of 5 stars and it’s one of my top reads in 2019. ❤
OuNYE for everyone!
Author bio – Adriana Herrera
Adriana was born and raised in the Caribbean, but for the last 15 years has let her job (and her spouse) take her all over the world. She loves writing stories about people who look and sound like her people, getting unapologetic happy endings.
When she’s not dreaming up love stories, planning logistically complex vacations with her family or hunting for discount Broadway tickets, she’s a social worker in New York City, working with survivors of domestic and sexual violence.
She’s one of the co-creators of the Queer Romance PoC Collective and serves as the VP of Programs for the Romance Writers of America New York City Chapter.
Her debut novel American Dreamer is available now.
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