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(True North #1)

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  16,417 ratings  ·  2,160 reviews
New cover edition found here.

The new series is set in Vermont. True North is populated by the tough, outdoorsy mountain men that populate the Green Mountain State. They raise cows and they grow apples. They chop a lot of wood, especially when they need to blow off steam. (Beards are optional but encouraged.)

If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the orchard.

The last perso
Kindle Edition, 349 pages
Published June 14th 2016 by Rennie Road Books
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Average rating 4.05  · 
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 ·  16,417 ratings  ·  2,160 reviews

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Angie - Angie's Dreamy Reads

I can't believe this was my FIRST Sarina Bowen book! How did I get by without this author in my life?! I'VE BEEN MISSING OUT. Bittersweet felt as if it was written just for me. I was IN IT from the opening page, spellbound by the sweet, charming, and sexy feels inside this romance. In fact, it felt as though I flat out melted all over the pages. I swooned hard. So hard, I tumbled into a FULL ON BOOKISH LOVE FEST!!!!!!! Hot flushes, sweet blushes
Oct 24, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016-audios
4 stars!

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I’ve yet to read a Sarina Bowen book I haven’t enjoyed and Bittersweet is no exception. It’s a second chance romance between chef Audrey and farmer Griff.
“Holy Cannoli. I was cuddling the world's grumpiest farmer.”

Griff starts out as the world’s grumpiest farmer, but he has a lot on his plate. He’s in charge of running his family’s farm, something he didn’t think he would have to do at this point in his life. All those responsibilities are stressful and stress makes p
Patty ~ Wrapped Up In Reading Book Blog
*****3.75 STARS*****
{ARC Generously Provided by Author}

The minute Griff Shipley had taken off his shirt, my body turned traitor. And by the time he put his mouth on me, whatever self-restraint I'd had flew away on the sweet Vermont breeze.

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I had never read anything by Sarina Bowen but I knew that her books were very popular amongst my reading obsessed friends. So I jumped at the chance to read this one and was completely psyched especially since I knew this would be a second chance romance wh
Jennifer Kyle
May 19, 2016 added it
Shelves: arcs
DNF @55 %

I loved this story in theory however, the actually story itself fell so very flat for me. The CIDER making (the word cider used - 172 times) and the just okay love connection left me struggling to go on. The setting was beautiful, the characters sadly held nothing special for me and the farm talk was ENDLESS.

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*ARC provided in exchange for an honest review*
Apr 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Sarina Bowen Fans, Romance
5 Accepting The Choices Made Stars
* * * * * Spoiler Free-Start Of The Series AND IT'S FREE!!!
This was such a wonderful read...with all the quality and complexity you have come to expect of Sarina Bowen's writing. There is a type of ease you feel with a Bowen... you know whatever she puts out it will strike you deep and true...For she is a writer who does not need gimmicks or manipulations to make her point. She just sets the wheels in motion and takes you on a ride that will open your minds and
It was cute.
If you like lumbersexuals, this one will really hit the spot. The guy is a total hipster with a beard making organic, specialized, small batch brews of specialty apple cider. I think some vegan chick who makes protest signs and wears retro dresses with an earring through her nose like a bull will non-dairy cream her pants over this dude.

His name is Griff, of course. Her name is Amanda, and they hooked up in college for sex twice. They are so enlightened and cool. She's a chef, but al
Stacey is Sassy
So easy to listen to...

****Changing it up to 4.5 Stars****

I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that I actually enjoyed the audio more than reading it myself. This doesn't happen very often, but Saskia Maarleveld and Tod Branson really brought Bittersweet to life for me. Audrey's frustrations and defeats were well portrayed and I felt her anguish and disappointment. With Griffin, his gruff personality made him more lovable and I couldn't help but laugh at his sookie-la-la tanties. I guess y
Heather K (dentist in my spare time)
*2.5 stars*

All of my friends LOVE this book so I was bummed to find that I liked it, but I couldn't muster enough enthusiasm about it to want to really... read it.

This book was a disappointment for me. Okay, okay, I'm being a bit harsh. This book was plenty good, and I enjoyed the dirty talk from what's-his-name, tall and beardy (ahh, Griff!), but after my intense winning streak from Sarina Bowen, I was expecting GOLD.

I have... issues... with M/F contemporary romance. More often than not, I fe
ren ♡
“Come closer. Farmers like to get dirty.”

I’m so glad Bittersweet was able to capture my attention, especially after DNF’ing 3 books. I guess it turns out I was just in the mood for a small-town romance with a hunky sexy bearded farmer. Yum. The author did a brilliant job in transporting my mind to the countryside (and almost convinced me to go find a sexy farmer of my own, I mean, there’s no shortage here in NZ but I digress…).

Griff (27) was such an ADORABLE hero! His responsiblene
Rachel Reads Ravenously
May 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars!

“Holy Cannoli. I was cuddling the world's grumpiest farmer.”

Sarina Bowen is an author I adore and I will read absolutely anything she writes. That being said, this was not my favorite book by her but I enjoyed it nonetheless. Bittersweet is a second chance romance between a farmer and a chef.

Audrey is doing her best to keep her job and please her corporate bosses when she is sent to the countryside to purchase produce. What she doesn't expect is to run into her college hook up o
Dee Montoya
4.5 STARS*****

(ARC provided by author )
(BR with Mel)

Sarina Bowen does it again!!!! She's created a new story with sexy characters, in a very charming setting that captivated me to no end. Forget about Farm-to-table, more like Farm-to-panty, delicious story that will leave you lusting after a hot farmer, and hungry for more....

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Griffin Shipley was a football star in college, and just when he was on the cusp of getting the football career he'd always wanted, his father dies, and Griffin has to
Astrid - The Bookish Sweet Tooth

5 "You had me at Star Wars" Stars

Prettier Review @ Vanilla & Spice Books

Sarina Bowen, I bow to you. Who would have thought that I would fall under the spell of a gruff and grouchy farmer?

Audrey didn't have a happy childhood. Her mother is cold at best and has always been giving her the impression that she is a constant failure. She dropped out of college, never really finished anything until she found her calling in cooking, the only thing she thinks she's good at. Audrey works for a chain of


Going to make this review short and sweet.

Bittersweet is about Griff - a hot bearded farmer from Vermont who lives with his vivacious and sweet-as-pie family.

Audrey works for a corporate restaurant company and is also a chef, and is sent to Griff's farm as a buyer. Griff and Audrey shared a brief fling in college but seeing each other again only reminds them both how hot they were for one another all those years ago.

I seriously ADORED Griff. He was the perfect
✰ Bianca ✰ BJ's Book Blog ✰





Former rich-girl Audrey never really knew what to do with her life.
She tried college, twice. Didn't work out.
After that, her Boston-royalty mom cut her off from the family money.
And Audrey found her passion on her own...she went to culinary school and became a chef.
Only she's not really working as a chef yet. She's interning at this huge Restaurant-group, BPG, as the girl for everything. Everything she's not really talented for.
They send her off to Vermont to talk farmers into selling their fin
Jacqueline's Reads
May 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arc
5 Farmer me Stars Please

Sarina Bowen is becoming a new favorite of mine. I read some of her book in the Ivy Years series and I loved them. I went into Bittersweet blindly and I read it in one sitting. When I finished, I could have easily read it again. Bittersweet is a pure romance book, it was sweet, interesting and I didn’t stop reading until the last page.

What I loved most about Bittersweet was the way it was written. The flow as nice and the pace was easy. I enjoyed the characters and I love
MELISSA *Mel Reader*
Jun 07, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arcs
4.5 "I Like Audrey. A lot" Stars!
(ARC provided by author)
(BR with Dee)

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Griffin Shipley is a 27 yr. old organic farmer living in Tuxbury, Vermont. After playing football in college, his NFL dreams were cast aside when his father suddenly passed away. For the last three years Griff has run Shipley Farms alongside his mother helping care for the farm & his siblings. They have apples, ciders & dairy, but cider is Griff's passion and the part of the farm he hopes to expand.

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Griff gets a little
S.M. West
4.5 Princess STARS

Love me a man that respects the earth, mother nature and is not afraid to get a little dirty!! This was a fun, sexy read.

Griffin Shipley and Audrey Kidder have history. A couple hooks-up in college and then they both went their own ways. But when fate, circumstance or just plain old life has them meeting again, they both can't forget the hot chemistry that brought them together in the first place. And they can't deny that it's still there.

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If you're a foodie or have a real
Jeannine Allison
***** FREE *****


Stupidity is the only excuse I have for not reading this sooner. The reviews were sort of mixed for this one and to be honest, I wasn't sure how I was going to feel about the setting being on a farm in Vermont (seems stupid but I just didn't know how I'd connect). And even though it's only been out less than a month, I'm pissed I didn't read it sooner. I don't know why I was worried--I love this author and she's one of my absolute favorites. I'm sorry I ever doubted you, Sarina B
***3.5 Stars***

I finally started this True North series by Sarina Bowen. I have been hearing so much about it, and I was intrigued with a series that was about sexy farmers who fall in love! There are not too many books out there on this least not ones that I have I decided to give it a go!

I am very glad that I did, I can tell that as this series progresses I am going to fall more and more in love with it. I was very impressed with this author's writing. She is very descr

Title: Bittersweet
Series: True North
Author: Sarina Bowen
Release date: June 14, 2016
Cliffhanger: No
HEA(view spoiler)

I think I may be one of the last bloggers out there to have never read a book by Sarina Bowen. Sad, but true. After hearing the praise for her books for so long, I knew I had to sign up for this first book in her brand new series.

I had to think long and hard about what I would rate this book, I had some conflicted feelings over it. I don't want anyone to be di
Reread 1/2019. Audible version. I love Audrey's voice, a tad too soft, but otherwise perfect (I need Bluetooth in my car!) Griff's voice sounds Southern, but I liked him more as the story went on. Griff & Audrey fight their attraction longer than I remembered. Their chemistry was off the charts.
I have to say that this is the BEST first book of a series that I have ever read/listened to.
I mentioned in my original review about gruff Griff. Wow, he sure has a LOT to deal with at such a young age.
Optimist ♰King's Wench♰
Reread 2/2021

I had to do it after reading Roommate. Wasn't ready to leave Tuxbury just yet and... I may or may not be continuing on with the series. Like I don't have review books waiting for me or anything.


Oh book, how I love thee… directly to the favorites shelf you go.

I don’t want to jump the gun or anything but I think Sarina Bowen is going to be one of my go to comfort authors. I’ve only read one other thing by her (Him) which
Jul 15, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I had a what can be described as a love-hate relationship with Bittersweet. Actually hate is the wrong word and a bit extreme, but you catch my drift.

"Come closer. Farmers like to get dirty."


• Griffin Shipley (he's a farmer, I have a thing for farmers and he's a grouch, love me a grumpy man)
• The beautiful backdrop of Vermont.
• The secondary characters - Griff's family are fabulous.
• The chemistry between Griff and Audrey.
• The dual POV.


• Didn't connect hugely to A
2.5 Stars

Bittersweet was a fast and fluffy read. There wasn't much to the book which helped me fly through it. Which, I didn't hate. I enjoyed elements of the book - such as the farm, food and family - but it was filled with tropes. However, this tropes didn't necessarily leave a bad taste in my mouth like others. Because of that this book was a close three stars, only falling short due to the insta-love between the main characters, Griffin and Audrey.

The highlight of this book was definitely t
3.75 Stars

Overall Opinion: This was a sweet, sexy, and low-drama read. I loved the second chance romance aspect, and how the broody H turned into a big softie. There were some things that seemed to distract from the romance and main storyline (like all of the parts about cooking and apples/cider), but I get why the author put all that in. I appreciated the ensemble of supporting characters, and the family oriented (even, dare I say, Kristen Ashley) feel. So even though I didn't love it, I liked
Ezinwanyi Chinyere
4.5 stars

This is how I felt after listening to this audiobook. Just like dancing. It had all the ingredients you need for an awesome book: humor, food, drink, family, great chemistry and captivating writing.
Audrey Kidder was hoping to get her an opportunity to show her culinary skills but the restaurant owner won’t give her a turn in the kitchen. He finally agreed to let her have more opportunities if she could get some farmers to sign a deal selling their organic crops at a price favorable to t
Al George
Who wants a big, burly organic farmer man? *waving hands wildly*

pick me!

Series: Oh yes and bring on the next one, please!

Sexy times: Rawr...oh yea and it was delish.


Plan on reading more by the author: So, I hazard to say the answer to that is a hells yes!

Synopsis Apparently, good old Griffin The Yummy was a rebound for our little Audry way back when in their college days. He's now farmer in the dell and she ends up with a flat on his farm whilst on a quest for farm to table goods for the evil corporat
Amy | Foxy Blogs
I finally joined 2017 and read my first Sarina Bowen book. I have a lot of friends who are huge fans of Ms. Bowen and I can see why. The book was entertaining and well written.

I love the setting, the Vermont countryside, and the premise of the book, a second chance romance between a farmer and a chef. The chemistry between Audrey and Griff was off the charts. I love how feisty Audrey is when it comes to trying to get the farmers to sell her their produce. Combine that with Griff’s stubbornness
Allison ❤️Will Never Conquer Her TBR❤️
3.75 Farmer-love Stars!

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Bittersweet is a cute, sexy, low on angst romance that takes place in rural Tuxbury, Vermont. Where the farmers are strapping hunks of men but spend more time fondling their apples than have time fondling a woman. Griffin Shipley has been running his family farm ever since his father passed away at a fairly young age. Giving up the chance for higher-level football, he wakes at 5am to milk his dairy cows, manage his vast apple orchard, and brew hard cider. When a sizzli
***3.5 Stars***

A sweet, second chance romance between a grouchy, bearded farmer and an upbeat, ambitious chef. A match made in heaven, right?

Audrey Kidder never made her mother proud. Her mom’s expectations were too high to reach. After failing out of the second college and losing all financial support from her mother, Audrey worked to put herself through culinary school. It wasn’t until she started living to fulfill HER dream, that she began to not feel like a failure. Even though, in the back
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sarina bowen
Sarina Bowen is the sixteen-time USA Today bestselling author of three dozen books, including: the True North series, and the Brooklyn Bruisers. She's the co-author of Him/Us and the WAGs series with Elle Kennedy. She's the author of The Ivy Years series, and more!
Are you looking for a friends-to-lovers story or maybe even a secret baby book? You can read a list of Sarina's books broken out by

Other books in the series

True North (8 books)
  • Steadfast (True North, #2)
  • Keepsake (True North, #3)
  • Bountiful (True North, #4; Brooklyn Bruisers, #4.5)
  • Speakeasy (True North, #5)
  • Fireworks (True North, #6)
  • Heartland (True North, #7)
  • Waylaid (True North, #8)

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35 likes · 71 comments
“It's been...interesting."
"Aw." He actually rolled his eyes. "Interesting? That's the review I get? I'm pretty sure the earth moved."
"Well..." My cheeks heated. "You're the farmer. It's your job to notice the earth.”
“Holy Cannoli. I was cuddling the world's grumpiest farmer.” 6 likes
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