Release Blitz + Review: The Secret Ingredient by KD Fisher (w/ excerpt)

Hello my lovely followers,

I am so happy to welcome you to my blog celebrating the release of KD Fisher’s The Secret Ingredient (out today!, October 27).

It’s part of Carina Press’ new line Carina Adores and it’s advertised as:

Carina Adores is home to highly romantic contemporary love stories featuring beloved romance tropes, where LGBTQ+ characters find their happily-ever-afters.

If you ever graved for a cozy, very warm but sometimes spicy romance between a small-town café owner and a executive chef cook be sure you don’t miss this book out.

Read also further for my review and all the other necessary book details.

Happy reading. 🙂


Title: The Secret Ingredient
Author: KD Fisher
Genre: F/F Romance, Contemporary
Release Date: October 27, 2020
Publisher: Carina Press (Carina Adores)
Length : 288 pages
Format: Trade Paperback *ebook and audio formats also available!
Price: $14.99 U.S.
ISBN: 9781335957146
CW: on-page display of several panic attacks; homophobia due to over-religious parent

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Amazon US
Harlequin (Publisher’s Website)
Apple Books | Google Play
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Two amazing chefs. Two very different restaurants. One undeniable love.

For single mom Adah Campbell, the executive chef job at a posh restaurant in tiny North Port, Maine is a dream come true—and the perfect opportunity to start over, far away from a home that’s never felt entirely hers. But fitting in has never been easy, and between a new town, a new boss, and the unexpectedly attractive owner of a rival café, things get off to a rocky start.

Never did free-spirited Beth Summers think she’d still be in North Port. Travel the world gathering delicious recipes and finding friends and lovers? Absolutely. Step in to run her family’s small-town café? Not so much. However, once Beth commits to something, that’s it. Soon, The Yellow House is the hottest spot in town, but Beth’s out of energy—and out of ideas for moving forward.

Until Adah Campbell walks into her life, and moving forward suddenly includes making room for a whole new family.

Carina Adores is home to highly romantic contemporary love stories featuring beloved romance tropes, where LGBTQ+ characters find their happily-ever-afters.

A new Carina Adores title is available each month in trade paperback, ebook and audiobook formats.

  • The Hideaway Inn by Philip William Stover (available now!)
  • The Girl Next Door by Chelsea M. Cameron (available now!)
  • Just Like That by Cole McCade (available now!)
  • Hairpin Curves by Elia Winters (available now!)
  • Better Than People by Roan Parrish (available now!)
  • The Love Study by Kris Ripper (available now!)
  • Just Like This by Cole McCade (available November 24)
  • Teddy Spenser Isn’t Looking for Love by Kim Fielding (December 29)


The door clattered open and Andrew walked in, a stormy expression eclipsing my brother’s normal goofy half smile. “Beth. Some people outside to see you.”

Since The Yellow House had been awarded Best New Restaurant in the Northeast by the Martin Williams Foundation, a prestigious culinary organization I’d never heard of prior to receiving the letter in the mail, we’d been bombarded with reporters, bloggers, and more diners than we could possibly keep up with. Usually, though, they didn’t show up a full four hours before we opened for the day.

Peeking through the window at the small gravel parking lot, I spotted a gleaming black Mercedes and three people sitting at one of the picnic tables in the garden. I wiped my hands on my apron and patted my hair, hoping that my curls hadn’t dried in a frizzy mess. Dressing in the dark, I’d hardly had a moment to make sure my socks matched before dashing out of the house. A few too many times these visitors were enthusiastic with the photos and

I appeared in Instagram posts and blog entries looking like a wild and unruly thing.

“Good morning!” I called as I bounded down the stairs. The morning air brushed cool against my clammy skin. Before the fire settled down, the kitchen tended to get unbearably hot. The sunlight had gathered itself into soft rays that glistened off the dew in the vegetable and herb patches. A monarch butterfly fluttered across my path and I paused, letting it take its time. Medusa, the barn-cat-turned-restaurant-mascot, snoozed on one of the picnic tables, blissfully oblivious of the visitors.

At the sound of my voice all three of them stood: a tall, slim man in a beautifully tailored suit, a shorter man with a ruddy, irritable face, and another person with their back to me. She turned. Immediately my cheeks heated, and an awkward laugh bubbled up from my throat.

She was like something plucked from my adolescent queer fantasies. Bad boy and tough woman rolled into one. She wore dark jeans, a thick leather belt, and a white T-shirt with the sleeves cuffed a few times up to reveal sinewy biceps. Her dark blond hair was pushed back from her flawless, angular face in a messy not-quite-pompadour. Straight eyebrows a few shades darker than her hair. A long, delicate nose. Lips that probably would have been ample were they not pressed together in a tense frown.

“How can I help you folks?” I bit back the comment that we didn’t open until eleven and offered a sweet smile instead.

The woman stepped forward without missing a beat, extending her hand. I closed the gap between us, shivering as her long fingers brushed my palm. Her skin was warm and a little work-rough. A heavy quiet settled over me as we shook hands. I had the strange thought that I could have held her hand all day. Up close I realized her narrow, wary eyes were a soft shade of green. They widened for a fraction of a second before she stepped back, shoving her hands into her pockets.

“I’m Adah Campbell, the new executive chef at Bella Vista. This is Sean Jacobs, our GM, and Riccardo Visconti, the head of our restaurant group.” Beneath the formal veneer of her words, her voice thrummed with life. Her accent wasn’t quite Southern, more country than anything else. It was the sound of humid thunderstorms and steaming biscuits slathered in home-churned butter. I never wanted her to stop talking.

The Secret IngredientThe Secret Ingredient by K.D. Fisher
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

*~~*ARC kindly provided by the author to me in exchange for an honest review *~~*

This book had so many aspects I really already loved before I even started it. I am definitely intriguied when I spot the words “single mom”, “chefs”, “restaurant” and “small-town” but when I began reading it I was soon engrossed by Beth’s sunny nature – she’s almost a force of nature – totally in comparison to Adah’s chilly first impression. In all honesty I really hoped for a afew seconds she wouldn’t be a total douchebag but my worries were without any reason – she is someone you get to learn through the book and while you’re maybe appealed by her first reaction towards Beth she has very good reasons for her behavior. I gave CW for on-page displays of panic attacks, there are a few happening later in the book, so beware about it. Later we also find out a lots of her panic attacks she has in her daily live are based on her very struggled relationship with her parents, basically she had to endure homophobia through an over-relgious parent and was forced to do things she didn’t wanted and had to act in a specfic way.

While this gives the book a lots of unexpected character depths it’s also how Beth and Adah interact with each other that let you swoon, their chemistry is there, yet for Adah it’s a bit reluctant and she is very hesitant to open up first. Very charming is her sweet child, Peter, who has a more outgoing personality and matches Beth’s quirky and lively behaviour. So it’s no surprise they are getting along so well, despite Beth not havinig any parenting experiences.

The book had a lot of charming characters, Beth’s brother is someone I would love to hear more about again, same goes for Adah’s landlord, someone who is another supportive character – and acts like a substitute grandmother and mother for Peter and Adah.
We are introduced to some (re-)appearing characters, some from the character’s pasts, we also have one unpleasant manager who’s just a nuisance and at one point I was ready to slap this guy.

If you want a book that is cozy, spicy but feels overall homey and gives you a feeling of being safe and secure this is your book. Beth is a great polar opposite to Adah and their dynamics work well for their slightly different yet similar professions and they complete each other well as “co-parent” for Adah’s son Peter.  You can definitely see how well this small found family, with all their supportive friends will thrive in the upcoming years after the reader closes the book and they have their HEA. ❤

View all my reviews

Author bio  – KD Fisher

KD Fisher is a queer New England-based writer of authentic, heartfelt LGBTQ+ narratives. KD grew up all over the United States, bouncing from North Carolina to Hawaii to Illinois, and finally settling in Maine where they spend far too much time at the beach.

When KD isn’t writing they can usually be found hiking with their overly enthusiastic dog, obsessing over plants, or cooking elaborate meals. KD loves classic country, perfectly ripe tomatoes, and falling asleep in the sun.

Author links / get in contact

Release blitz  and blogtour materials provided by Carina Press.


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