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A storybook kiss on New Year's Eve at the Big Sky Mavericks Masked Ball in Marietta, Montana should have been the beginning of a grand romance for Gretchen Zabrinski and Daniel Andrews. But when Gretchen overhears a phone call from Daniel to his brother about what he really wants from a woman, she takes off...without leaving so much as a glass slipper behind.

Daniel wants a family. Gretchen will never be able to give him that. So why does fate keep throwing them together so cruelly? First, at a Copper Mountain Chocolate Shop Speed Dating event, then when he’s hired to open a new division at her PR firm. But competing, shoulder-to-shoulder, to sell the most exotic chocolate kisses for charity really is the last straw.

Is love a cosmic connection or a karmic joke? Sometimes, the answer reveals itself in a kiss—a sweet kiss shared beneath a warm Montana summer sky.

254 pages, Kindle Edition

First published July 6, 2017

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About the author

Debra Salonen

134 books204 followers
- Born and raised in Brookings, South Dakota. Youngest of five (much youngest). A Baby Boomer who married her high school sweetheart (our lockers were side-by-side). Mother of two, grandmother of three darling princesses, dog mother of 2.5 mutts.

- Graduate of South Dakota State University with a Master’s degree in Geography and History.

- Job history: taxi driver, flax seed counter, cartographer, rural mail carrier, substitute teacher, secretary/community liaison for Merced College’s Child Development Center, bookkeeper, journalist, author.

- First sale story: June, 1999, to Harlequin Superromance. Total number of books sold to Harlequin =27.

- Honors and awards: Romantic Times BOOKreviews, 2006 Series Storyteller of the Year. Winner: Best Superromance of 2010: Until He Met Rachel. Nominated for Desert Quill in 2008.

- First book published by Tule Press, summer 2014: Cowgirl Come Home. The Big Sky Mavericks series opens Aug. 2014 with: Nobody's Cowboy.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 39 reviews
Profile Image for Carrie.
3,230 reviews1,564 followers
July 21, 2017
Gretchen Zabrinski has moved to Marietta, Montana after getting some devastating news from her doctor. When offered the chance to go on what seems like it will be the perfect date with Daniel Andrews at the Big Sky Mavericks Masked Ball on New Year's Eve she feels it's her night to feel like Cinderella and enjoy herself, that is until she overhears Daniel and runs from the party knowing she isn't what he wants.

A few months later while attending a speed dating even at Marietta's Copper Mountain Chocolate shop Gretchen and Daniel find their paths crossing again. Daniel is curious as to why Gretchen left him that night but she's not quite ready to let him in on her diagnosis but keeping Daniel at arm's length get tougher when he's hired to open a new division at her PR firm and as fate would have it the two find themselves working together for a charity event.

Sweet Summer's Kiss is the tenth book in the Love at the Chocolate Shop series. Each of the books in the series tie the characters in some way to the quaint little town of Marietta, Montana and it's Copper Mountain Chocolate shop. The stories all feature different couples coming together after their encounters with the shop so each can be read as a standalone novel but there are always little updates and inclusions of previous characters for those that have followed the entire series.

This installment of the series is one that will tug on a reader's heartstrings as Gretchen is dealing with a huge blow from her diagnosis and trying to figure out how to live with the news and what it means for her future. I really enjoyed Gretchen and Daniel and reading their story as it developed along with revisiting some of the previous Marietta residents. Definitely a sweet romance again that will have you falling in love with the quaint town and it's residents.

I received a copy from the publisher via NetGalley.

For more reviews please visit https://carriesbookreviews.wordpress....
Profile Image for Wendy'sThoughts.
2,658 reviews3,255 followers
August 9, 2017
3.5 Sweet Reality's Truth Stars
* * * 1/2 Spoiler Free
This specific entry of the Love at the Chocolate Shop series has the touch of Cinderella by the woman's own making. This tale had a lot to present. There was a huge pre-story which impacted everything... and it an assumption by our gal which becomes the basis for the story.

Life is full of miscommunications or assumptions and Debra Salonen showcased how these beliefs cause so much wasted time when it involves relationships and friends.

This tale has a woman who always thought she would have a family and teach young children. In a moment, that dream was taken away... and now she is back home in Marietta attempting to start a new career in marketing and pr.

Our prince charming is a fella who has been roped into helping out with a pr campaign and project for the town with the Cooper Mountain Chocolate Shop being part of it. This project brings our destined lovebirds together... and after a lot of story happening... we finally get a happy ending for them.

These tales revolving around the Chocolate Shop and Marietta Montana are addictive. There is heart in all of them and each author brings their own flavor to them. This series has grown on me and it is very easy to gobble them up just like M&M's.

Melt My Heart, Cowboy (Love at the Chocolate Shop, #1) by C.J. Carmichael Melt My Heart, Cowboy (Love at the Chocolate Shop, #1)
A Thankful Heart (Love at the Chocolate Shop #2) by Melissa McClone A Thankful Heart (Love at the Chocolate Shop, #2)
Montana Secret Santa (Love at the Chocolate Shop, #3) by Debra Salonen Montana Secret Santa (Love at the Chocolate Shop, #3)
The Chocolate Cure (Love at the Chocolate Shop, #4) by Roxanne Snopek The Chocolate Cure (Love at the Chocolate Shop, #4)
The Valentine Quest (Love at the Chocolate Shop #5) by Melissa McClone The Valentine Quest (Love at the Chocolate Shop, #5)
Charmed by Chocolate (Love at the Chocolate Shop, #6) by Steena Holmes Charmed by Chocolate (Love at the Chocolate Shop #6)
The Chocolate Comeback (Love at the Chocolate Shop #7) by Roxanne SnopekThe Chocolate Comeback (Love at the Chocolate Shop #7) https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...
The Chocolate Touch (Love at the Chocolate Shop, #8) by Melissa McClone The Chocolate Touch (Love at the Chocolate Shop #8)
Sweet Home Cowboy (Love at the Chocolate Shop, #9) by Marin Thomas Sweet Home Cowboy (Love at the Chocolate Shop #9)
Sweet Summer's Kiss (Love at the Chocolate Shop Book 10) by Debra Salonen Sweet Summer's Kiss (Love at the Chocolate Shop #10)

A gifted copy was provided by Tule Publishing via NetGalley for an honest review.

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Profile Image for Dawnie.
1,273 reviews127 followers
July 25, 2017
*Thanks to NetGalley, the publishers and the author for giving me this free e-copy of this book in exchange for a free and honest review*

I Love this series and this book was a good addition -sadly not a fantastic one to/for me- but still a solid read.

The "Problems" (and i say problems like that since they are not really problems in general just personal things that i kept noticing and that bothered me personally but i can see how not everyone will have it as a problem):
- The characters and family where a bit much up until half the book.
There were a LOT of people introduced in the first 40 pages of this book.
Too many for me. We got too much information thrown at the reader right of the bat and that bothered me a bit for some reason. I don't really understand why, since i have read most of the books in this series and i did know at least the names of most of the people mentioned- it still was too much characters and too much.... just too much for me to enjoy the beginning of the book.

- speaking of the beginning of the book it was too fake cutesy for me.
Which yes, thanks i know. its a romance book. So clearly its going to be overly cutesy. It is going to be fake and overdone and nothing that will ever really happen in real life.
But in this book the whole meeting on New Years eve and going on a date -the guy as a favourite for his brothers finance and the woman because she tried to overcome some to her devastating news and try something new. And lets just say it is all very insta-love-y in leave it at that.
Which was just not what i loved in the other books of this series.
They all build a bit until the main couple of each book feel in love with each other. They took their time, they got to know each other a bit.
In this book -BANG there it was.
Which is not what i enjoy in romance books. and not what i enjoyed with and in this series so far.
So that was a clear miss for me, sadly.

- the dramatisation of the main females health issues.
I am not saying they were unreal, or that her reaction was not understandable.
BUT i have been given devastating news about my health before and i am sorry but the way she reacted was not at all realistic in my option.
Yes getting bad news that completely destroy what you had planned for your life is horrible. Its really hard. Its completely devastating.
I get that. BUT i didn't like how Gretchen was dealing with what was going on and how she handled the situation.
Now maybe that is just my personal attitude to this kind of thing my "deal with it and figure it out there are always more options, there have to be!" thinking that Gretchens rather sniffly feeling approach to the topic was just rubbing me the wrong way.
Once again a very personal thing but if you hate how the main character behaves, you have a hard time loving the book -or maybe i should say, I have a hard time loving the book if that happens.

- Daniel.
He was okay. But he was incredibly flat feeling to me.
Which once again. If the main male character feels flatter than a pancake that somehow got thrown underneath the wheels of a heavy loaded truck it makes it hard for me to enjoy the plot.
That was mean. I know that was mean. I am generally a nice person and so i know this was not nicely formulated and could be said better but honestly that is how i feel about this character!
But daniel to me felt very much like he was a perfectly cut cardboard cut out.
qualities that i read and liked.

What i LOVED:
- the writing
it was very nicely written.
And yes know i literary just ripped the characters to shreds and was not at all nice about specific aspects of the writing, but the overall story plot and how it was told was okay, it was nicely done. So that was enjoyable.

- The family moments
One of the biggest thing I love about this entire book series and in this book as well, are the wonderful family support and love you can see in the books.
I love it when siblings, parents and anyone else that might be related to you can be there for you in some way.
That they want to support and help you and be there for you.
And sadly we get that so sparely in books, those nice supportive family members. So loved seeing that yet again in a book in this series!

All in all this review makes this book sound as if it was bad.

Its still fun and cute and nicely done.

But it was just not my personal favourite romance book -because i have issues with the characters!

I still recommend this book, and think its worth a read, and you all should give it a try!
Profile Image for Shelagh.
1,439 reviews15 followers
July 7, 2017
Sweet Summer's Kiss, the tenth story in the Love At The Chocolate Shop series set in Marietta Montana, starts off as pure tongue cheek fun mixed with a hint of melancholy but the further I read the more caught up I got in Gretchen's life and the heartbreaking future she faced.
Daniel Andrews, Gretchen's love interest in this gorgeous Cinderella story, is just as compelling a s she is. His determination to win Gretchen's heart no matter what had me cheering him on from the start.
Author Debra Salonen has woven an intricate sweet romance filled with well-meaning family, dogs and cute babies. There were plenty of plot twists to keep me turning the pages though truthfully I was so invested in Daniel and Gretchen I really didn't need much more than Gretchen finally realising that she couldn't live without Daniel.
The black moment in this novel just broke my heart but of course when romantic heroines face the worst that life can dish up they also have a wonderful happy ever after to look forward to and that is certainly the case for Gretchen.
This was a gorgeous story from start to finish. There were times I cried and times I smiled and ultimately what more could you want from a romance novel.
2,100 reviews14 followers
July 9, 2017
This is a great story of overcoming life's obstacles by letting love into your heart. This is the first book I have read in this series but it will not be my last. My heart went out to Gretchen as the author showed us how she reacted to her diagnosis. One of my favorite parts was the New Year's Eve masquerade ball. This story will pull on your heart strings but you will not be able to put it down. I received an advance copy of this book and I willingly chose to write an honest review.
1,405 reviews5 followers
August 10, 2017
Another awesome book by Debra Salonen. I must admit when I first started reading it I was a little sad with the information that Gretchen learned from the Dr. I thought things would be better for Gretchen when she met Daniel until he said those few words that broke her heart. But true love avails and fate gave them another chance.

I really enjoyed the way the book turned out, it kept your interest from the beginning to the end. I would truly recommend this book to anyone who loves a great romance with a little real life situations thrown in.
Profile Image for Marsha Keeper Bookshelf.
4,289 reviews72 followers
July 28, 2017
Reviewed at Keeper Bookshelf

There are times when our lives change in an instant. Dreams, plans, desires can flip like a tumbleweed completely out of control in the whirlwind that is our reality. It’s not right, it’s not fair… but it is life and we only get one so those plans, those dreams often have to take a turn in a different direction. Only that’s one of the most difficult things to do. To give up a dream. Yet there are more than just one way for dreams to come true. They might not happen in the way we envisioned, but dreams never really die they simply evolve to match the reality we face. If we’re brave enough to take the risk of not finding our original dream, but accepting and embracing the dream that is right in front of us.

These are life lessons, sometimes harsh lessons, that Gretchen and Daniel must accept. That doesn’t mean that their dreams have to fail, it only means they need to find another type of dream to make their own unique reality.

Gretchen’s night at the Big Sky Mavericks Masked Ball in Marietta, Montana was a night of living the Cinderella fairy tale, including fleeing the ball in a panic, leaving a potential Prince Charming far behind. It was all going so well, so much fun, a charming man and the magic of the perfect night. Right up until an overheard conversation brought everything tumbling down. No, it was better for them both to simply leave, to stay would involve more heartache than she had the strength to endure. Daniel had discovered that perfect woman for him. Enough so that he did a bit of excited bragging in a conversation. Sometimes you find that one person and you simply “know” and if you’re lucky they “know” right back at you. Daniel believed he’d found that… right up until his dream woman disappeared.

Fate will bring Daniel and Gretchen back together for a second chance. It’s going to be up to Daniel to prove that they could have it all. And up to Gretchen to finally explain why that simply couldn’t be. But there is magic in Marietta, Montana. The kind of magic that involves friends, family and making the dream you lost take a different turn straight to a perfect future for two fairy tale dreamers.

I adored this couple. They each had to make changes to their life’s plan, but they endured. Together they could have something extremely special. All it takes is a bit of belief in each other… oh, and lots of chocolate never hurts either. It’s always a special treat for me to run into loved characters from earlier series, and this time was no exception. It’s going to be hard to let this series go shortly. Hopefully these wonderful authors will pair up once again for another magical year in Marietta, Montana.

Sweet Summer’s Kiss could be read as a stand alone story – but there are some threads that, in my opinion, you’ll enjoy this story a bit more if you’ve followed the entire series. They are an amazing set of stories surrounded by chocolate, friends, family and finding that one love that’s perfect for you. Hard to pass that up. It truly is no hardship to read this entire series. I’d highly recommend this story and the entire series to any Romance reader.

*I received an e-ARC of this novel from the publisher via NetGalley. That does not change what I think of this story. It is my choice to leave a review giving my personal opinion about this book.*
1,310 reviews9 followers
July 8, 2017
Sweet Summer's Kiss by Debra Salonen
(Love at the Chocolate Shop)

A storybook kiss on New Year's Eve at the Big Sky Mavericks Masked Ball in Marietta, Montana should have been the beginning of a grand romance for Gretchen Zabrinski and Daniel Andrews. But when Gretchen overhears a phone call from Daniel to his brother about what he really wants from a woman, she takes off...without leaving so much as a glass slipper behind.

Daniel wants a family. Gretchen will never be able to give him that. So why does fate keep throwing them together so cruelly? First, at a Copper Mountain Chocolate Shop Speed Dating event, then when he’s hired to open a new division at her PR firm. But competing, shoulder-to-shoulder, to sell the most exotic chocolate kisses for charity really is the last straw.

Is love a cosmic connection or a karmic joke? Sometimes, the answer reveals itself in a kiss—a sweet kiss shared beneath a warm Montana summer sky
this is Daniel Andrews and Gretchen Zabrinski's story.
A light tapping sounded on the door of the parsonage’s guestroom where Gretchen had been staying for the past couple of weeks. "Knock. Knock. Your date just drove up, Auntie. In a limo. "Gretchen slipped the white, fake fur jacket that had come with the dress off the padded hanger and picked up the small silver purse she'd filled earlier in the day. "Would you carry these for me, honey? I hope my date remembers the invitations.
Daniel’s hired to open a new division at her PR firm. But competing, shoulder-to-shoulder, to sell the most exotic chocolate kisses for charity really is the last straw.
I highly recommend reading.
Sweet Summer's Kiss by Debra Salonen is a wonderful well written 5 star book.
"I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book."

Debra's Books with Tule:
Montana Cowgirl
Big Marietta Fair
Big Sky Mavericks

Montana Cowboy
Big Sky Mavericks

Montana Darling
Big Sky Mavericks

Montana Maverick
Big Sky Mavericks

Her Hero to Love
Love, Montana

Her Rogue to Tame
Love, Montana

Montana Miracle
Big Sky Mavericks

Her Rebel to Kiss
Love, Montana

Montana Secret Santa
Love at the Chocolate Shop

Sweet Summer’s Kiss
Love at the Chocolate Shop

Love at the Chocolate Shop
Love blooms in and around the Copper Mountain Chocolate shop of Marietta, Montana in a twelve book series featuring authors C.J. Carmichael, Melissa McClone, Debra Salonen, Roxanne Snopek, Marin Thomas and Steena Holmes.

Book 1
Melt My Heart, Cowboy
by CJ Carmichael

Book 2
A Thankful Heart
by Melissa McClone

Book 3
Montana Secret Santa
by Debra Salonen

Book 4
The Chocolate Cure
by Roxanne Snopek

Book 5
The Valentine Quest
by Melissa McClone

Book 6
Charmed by Chocolate
by Steena Holmes

Book 7
The Chocolate Comeback
by Roxanne Snopek

Book 8
The Chocolate Touch
by Melissa McClone

Book 9
Sweet Home Cowboy
by Marin Thomas

Book 10
Sweet Summer’s Kiss
by Debra Salonen

34 reviews2 followers
July 24, 2017
SWEET SUMMER’S KISS – A story by Debra Salonen

Sweet Summer’s Kiss begins a bit like Cinderella at the ball…a pretty girl, dressed in her designer gown, off to meet Prince Charming for the first time. Of course, we all know how Cinderella’s night turned out…

The story of Gretchen and Daniel is complicated, but one that is often found in many romance novels. In order to keep this spoiler-free, I will leave it at that. However, it took me until halfway through the book to start to really enjoy this story.

For the first half of the book, I found there were almost too many characters to keep everyone, and their children, straight. If you are a bit OCD at all, and feel the need to have a family tree to understand who’s who, it’s too complicated for me. Still, I was glad I stuck with it to get to the second half. It was there that the true “meat” of the story took place and the main characters were actually developed to their true potential.

After finishing the book, I realized it was one in a series of books. Since it was later in the series, I can only assume that I might have understood the relationship of all of the characters had I read the first few books that came before this one. Therefore, I definitely recommend reading the other books before you read this one.

Sweet Summer’s Kiss is definitely worth reading if you start at the beginning of the series and know the characters first or if you are someone who doesn’t mind muddling through without knowing them to get to the true gist of the story.

An ARC (Advanced Reader Copy) of this book was received free via Netgalley for an honest review.
Profile Image for Eileen.
1,949 reviews
July 17, 2017
Gretchen Zabrinski and Daniel Andrews
This is a story about overcoming ones fears and letting love into your life. Gretchen got devastating news and it changed the course of her life. She was set to finish college with a degree in education because she wanted to be a teacher. That wouldn't be possible now and she couldn't finish. She went as far as to leave Detroit, MI and move out to Marietta, Montana to start something new and figure out a new path for herself.
Its new years eve and she has a blind date with Daniel and things are going really well until she overhears him say something that she knows will be impossible. She leaves him stranded and meets up with him later in the year at a speed dating event. There is no denying an attraction between them but she doesn't want to lead him on knowing she could never give him a family. She eventually gives him the truth about why she left him that night and he tries to understand things from her point of view. He just knows he needs to do whatever it takes to get her to see that he wants her for her, and families come in all different ways.
This story and depth and emotion. I can't imagine how Gretchen felt when she learned about her medical condition. That is devastating. Daniel very slowly and carefully kept himself in her life at work and around town. He knew that he had to show her that they belong together. I loved the competition of dark vs milk chocolate. The kissing booth was a way to connect the two of them together. This is a great addition to the series and I'm savoring each of them.
Profile Image for Becky Burciaga.
1,461 reviews15 followers
January 20, 2018
I have thoroughly enjoyed the Love at the Chocolate Shop series. Each story is unique and charming...this latest story is no exception. Beginning with a Cinderella like sweetness and innocence...that same theme ran throughout. The night of the New Year's Eve Ball and their first kiss, was gentle and heartwarming, while at the same time heartbreaking. The author's portrayal of both Daniel's confusion and hurt...as well as Gretchen's own devastation was exceptional. With Daniel you have a true gentleman who always but Gretchen's needs before his own.

Emotions run high with both characters, but you could feel their longing and the boundaries that loomed over their relationship...or more like Daniel's continual attempts at breaking down Gretchen's barriers. There were many times that I felt Daniel's confusion and heartbreak because of Gretchen's privacy needs to keep her own secrets to herself. I truly felt for her and her own heartbreak, but Daniel's confusion and hurt at being left in the dark was devastating. His persistence was just so darn sweet, while she circumvented his every attempt to win her heart.

Each story in the series keeps me coming back for more, with so many crossovers with the characters the series could continue to run for a quite some time without ever becoming stagnant.

This ARC book was complimentary, provided by the Publisher and Netgally, I am voluntarily providing my honest review.
Profile Image for Monique.
925 reviews62 followers
July 17, 2017
Review written: July 16, 2017
Star Rating: ★★★☆☆
Heat Rating: ☀☀☼☼☼

An Advanced Reader Copy (ARC) of this book was received free via Netgalley for an honest review.

Salonen never skimps on dealing with hard subjects and once again, she does it with grace and delicacy. Tying in with her Big Sky Mavericks series and the amazing Zabrinski family, this is a sweet addition to it all.

Gretchen has run to Marietta and she's eating her heart out over her lost dreams. When she finally decides to push out of her funk, she meets Daniel. Unfortunately, for Gretchen, Daniel isn't the good time guy she thought he was and she bugs out on their "date". Enter one chocolate shop, two families, and (finally!) some time spent talking and Sweet Summer's Kiss turns into a forever love.

I liked revisiting both the Zabrinskis and the Andrews as we've seen both in Marietta already. Gretchen and Daniel were both strong characters though both seemed a bit young for their ages. As always, Salonen's deft touch makes the book's subject matter shine.

This isn't her best work, but I enjoyed it and look forward to more.

This review is ©July 2017 by Monique N. and has been posted to Netgalley.
Profile Image for Eileen.
1,922 reviews
July 12, 2017
I totally loved Sweet Summer’s Kisses by Debra Salonen, book ten in the Love at the Chocolate Shop series. This is Gretchen Zabrinski and Daniel Andrews story. These two attend the New Year’s Eve Big Sky Mavericks Masked Ball together as a favor to Gretchen’s boss and Daniel’s brother. Feeling like Cinderella, Gretchen shares a sizzling kiss with Daniel but after overhearing his phone call with his brother, she leaves without a word. Daniel returns to Marietta months later to open a new division at her PR firm which has these two running into each other, working together, and sharing sweet kisses. Daniel is determined to prove to Gretchen that her reservations about getting involved with him can be overcome.

I loved, loved, loved reading this book and had trouble putting this book down, reading it in one day. Ms. Salonen drew me in and did not let go until I read the last page. I highly recommend this book to other readers and I for one look forward to the next book in this wonderful series.

I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book.
Profile Image for Amary Chapman.
1,425 reviews10 followers
July 14, 2017
Gretchen Zabrinski had always wanted to be a wife, mother and kindergarten teacher. She stayed chaste as her commitment to that future...only to find out a health issue destroyed her dream.
Dropping out of college in her last semester and traveling to Marietta to be with her sister Sam, she put her parents in a tailspin.....not knowing how to help.
Her new boss Krista Martin set her up with her brother-in law, a known playboy type and she thought that this was her chance to experience what she'd missed...only to find out that Daniel was perfect ...sweet, sexy, considerate, intelligent...the whole package, so she dumped him on their first date after overhearing him tell his brother how she'd impressed him.
Not one to give up, he made sure she was aware of him and slowly won her confidence...enough for her to confide in him and give him the ammunition to help her see they were meant to be. Wonderful sweet western town romance.
I requested and received an ARC from NetGalley.
Profile Image for Kerry Croucier.
899 reviews8 followers
July 28, 2017
Gretchen and Daniel...oh my, what can I say? This story really pulled on all my emotions. It was well-written with characters that kept me so emotionally invested I hated to see it end. Gretchen came to Marietta to heal and figure out how the devastating news was going to change her life's direction both personally and professionally. She meets Daniel when she is still reeling. They have such a perfect time together, she runs away feeling there is no future for them, glad that he is only visiting Marietta. Daniel can't forget the time spent with Gretchen and, now that he is in town to stay, he's determined to see if there is a future for them.
I loved how Salonen wove her story and characters into the community and the characters in it. To me, the story was so well-written, that I was devastated and in tears for Gretchen. This was a wonderful addition to the Love at the Chocolate Shop series, but can be read as a stand alone novel.
*I received an advanced copy from the publisher via NetGalley. My opinions are my own and freely given.
Profile Image for Janine.
954 reviews23 followers
July 10, 2017

A new twist on the Cinderella story.

On New Year's Eve, Gretchen Zabrinski was set up by her boss with Daniel Andrews, a man social media called the prince of playboys. The date was going perfect until Gretchen overhears Daniel on the phone saying he thinks he just kissed the mother of his future children. This sends Gretchen running from the ball without a word to anyone. Gretchen was recently diagnosed with a health condition and she knows she will never be able to give him what he wants. Five months later, they meet again at Copper Mountain Chocolate's speed dating event. This time, Daniel is not letting Gretchen out of his sight. He will do whatever it takes to win her heart.

I have been enjoying the Love at the Chocolate Shop series. I hate to think it is almost over. This book is a perfect complement to the other stories. The author did a great job writing a tale that I won't soon forget.
Profile Image for Jean.
465 reviews10 followers
August 26, 2017
This was another wonderful addition to the Love at the Chocolate Shop series. Although, like the others, it can be read as a stand-alone and you won't miss out on anything.
Gretchen is facing a turning point in her life as fate has crushed her future dreams and plans so she is bound and determined to break the rules for once in her life and take some chances. Daniel has a mild playboy like reputation, but he is smitten with Gretchen right away - even though it is basically a blind date.
But when things start getting too real - Gretchen isn't sure she can handle Daniel or her feelings.
I loved both of these characters so much. They just seemed so genuine and real with such real feelings and emotions. The story surrounding the Fourth of July festival and fundraiser in town was wonderful as well. As always, the citizens of Marietta make me wish that the town was a real place I could visit.
Profile Image for Paula Pugh.
1,744 reviews8 followers
July 7, 2017
A devastating prognosis brings Gretchen Zabrinski to stay with her sister in Marietta as an escape from her parents and as a way to try and rebuild her life as it will be and leaving behind so many dreams and plans. Her life begins to encounter rapid changes when she meets Daniel Andrews on a New Year’s Eve date. He is charming and so handsome that Gretchen is willing to give it all up to him. But, an overheard conversation sends her out into the night and back to her home. He is looking for more than she can ever give him.
Circumstances evolve to where Gretchen and Daniel are working together and there is more developing than she is ready to accept. Until she comes clean with the reason for her reticence about the relationship possibility, Daniel continues to pursue her and breaks down her boundaries and her resolve, maybe.
Profile Image for Jennie Fortna.
1,726 reviews12 followers
July 13, 2017
ARC for honest review with no compensation 4.2 stars

Sweet Summer’s Kiss is part of the Love At The Chocolate Shop series. This is a standalone like all the rest but I thinking reading the other books will give more insight to the Chocolate Shop series. This is my first book in this series and what a way for me to start the series! !

Gretchen has secrets that have changed her life in a heartbeat. When she goes to the New Year’s Eve Ball with Daniel, she feels a little like Cinderella but hope her story doesn’t end with just a dance until she overhears Daniel on the phone….she runs away…..

Fate has other ideas and keeps throwing them together time and again…will they get the idea that maybe fate is telling them this is their HEA or will Gretchen decide she can’t be everything Daniel wants and needs????
Profile Image for Book Gannet.
1,572 reviews17 followers
July 28, 2017
This was lovely, a tale of love at first sight/instalove that takes a lot of hard work and persistence to win through. Complete with speed dating, a kissing booth and lots and lots of chocolate. It’s a sweet, comforting read that makes for a great summer escape. True, if you’re not already familiar with Debra Salonen’s Zabrinski family (Big Sky Mavericks) then you may get lost amongst the characters on occasion, but on the whole it shouldn’t cause too many problems.

Gretchen is only twenty-two but has recently had her dreams snatched away from her. When she first meets Daniel, she is swept up in the fantasy of the playboy prince, but she’s still in a dark place with a lot of healing to do. As such, when the prospect of a future is raised, she runs for the hills. And to a certain extent she keeps on running through most of the book. She is young, she is hurt, but there were times when I wanted to shake her and tell her to stop it. There is still so much she could live for, especially with Daniel in her life, but getting her to see that is quite a challenge.

Luckily for her, Daniel is up to it. He’s all kinds of amazing, actually. Good looking, smart, supportive, he’s pretty much perfect, especially for Gretchen. Sure, he had a bit of a reputation in the past, but there’s a lot more to him than some old social media pictures and he has definitely made major changes in his life. I really liked him, and the way he saw Gretchen and worked so hard to keep her was just lovely. He’s not pushy, but he is sneaky, and I couldn’t help but love him a little.

So in all I thoroughly enjoyed this. It has romance and humour, a bit of heartache and lots of hope. It’s not all plain sailing and the love does seem to form very quickly, but I liked that the real relationship took time to build and how Daniel was willing to put the work in. Yes, there were times when Gretchen frustrated me, but it was for understandable reasons and the ending was everything I wanted it to be.

(Review copy provided by the publisher via NetGalley.)
3,281 reviews11 followers
July 15, 2017
Sweet Summer's Kiss by Debra Salonen is sweet story of lost dreams, then the realization that new ones can come true. The Cinderella as well as the Prince Charming aspects of this modern version are obvious but I quite liked it. I was happy to see that there were no wicked or misguided family members because isn’t life’s realities harsh enough; they certainly were in Gretchen’s case (loved her name). Daniel makes for a likable and charming love interest for Gretchen. He is swoon worthy as he continues to pursue his “Cinderella”.
This is a heartwarming story that brighten my day. I would recommend this book and the entire Love at the Chocolate Shop Series to anyone who needs an affirmation that life can turn out better than you ever hoped.
An ARC of the book was given to me by the publisher through Net Galley.
489 reviews2 followers
July 24, 2017
I love this series and I enjoyed reading this book. At times, I just didn't love Gretchen, mainly because I thought her desires didn't line up with the moral code which had guided her choices until a recent medical diagnosis threw her for a loop. In actuality, she is extremely young and going thru a time of emotional upheaval, and scared out of her wits by the revelation that Daniel thinks she could be "the one."
The book takes a humorous tone; the situations that keep bringing them together are funny to read. As always, I love seeing community members I've met in other Marrietta books woven through this story. Don't let my tendency to psychoanalyze characters put you off reading this book. If you like instant chemistry followed by "I can't let you love me for your own good," you'll enjoy this.
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1,855 reviews13 followers
July 7, 2017
Can Love, Chocolate and Kisses change her mind?

Oh how I love Marietta, Montana! Sage's chocolates are just so good, you know they have to be. Our authors tell us how good in all the books. In this book, "Sweet Summer Kisses" we get to know Daniel and Gretchen. Now if you have read some of the other Lice at the Chocolate Shop books, you might have met them before ...or their family members. If not it's okay, you will quickly catch on in this book.

This is a really sweet story...pun intended, with a storyline that sadly is all to common now of days. Don't worry there is a happy ending and lots of Sage's delicious chocolates involved.

Hurry up and catch up on all the Love at the Chocolate Shop Books... only 2 more in this series left.
Profile Image for SOMDReigel.
926 reviews
July 9, 2017
Sweet Summer’s Kiss is Gretchen’s and Daniels story. Two wonderful characters that I adored from the beginning and was quickly vested in. Gretchen has had her world changed overnight – leading her to another career path and a different life than what she envisioned she would have. Enter Daniel who I couldn’t help but fall in love with this character as he is determined to win Gretchen’s heart. A very sweet romance set in small town Marietta, Montana. In Marietta, you get well-meaning friends, family, and a close-knit community who supports one another. Author Debra Salonen writes stories that touch the readers hearts. Interesting characters, a fun play on the Cinderella storyline, and the much needed HEA. A wonderful addition to the Love at the Chocolate Shop series.
470 reviews4 followers
July 12, 2017
This was a fun re-telling of the Cinderella story. This is the 10th story in the Love at the Chocolate Shop series set in Marietta.

Gretchen Zabrinski & Daniel Andrew were set up to attend the Big Sky Mavericks Masked Ball together. Things were going well until Gretchen overhears Daniel telling his brother he thinks he has found the future mother of his children. Gretchen is unable to have children so those words went straight to her heart & she fled.

However, they end up working together for the same company & in the same building. Working together they grow closer. This was a great story of overcoming different obstacles, opening up & being honest with each other & having supportive family members.
807 reviews
July 10, 2017
This book is part of a series and yet can be read as a stand alone.
Gretchen the young lady this book is about just made me care about her, and how she went about trying to deal what life had handed her. And Daniel as he pined for her, trying so hard to win her over , well he had me rooting for him to.
It was nice catching up with some of the characters from Marietta I'd grew to love in earlier books, Mia and Ryker and their part in this story just touched my heart, I reached for a tissue so thankful I had this book in my hands.
I would recommend this book to other romance readers.
278 reviews1 follower
September 1, 2017
Daniel and Gretchen's story is classic, scared of living life. Gretchen found out some very hard news and it has made her throw everything away she believed was what she wanted in life. In reality it pointed her in a different direction that is using other talents in amazing ways to help people.

Daniel is wowed by Gretchen on their blind date that is does a 180 and seems like a one night stand isn't right, but Gretchen hears this and it throws her into a tailspin.

I enjoyed how Debra pulled Gretchen and Daniel together and helping Gretchen learn her life really isn't over, because the direction has changed.

Profile Image for Elissa.
Author 37 books102 followers
August 8, 2017
This sweet, rich book (how appropriate since chocolate plays such a large role!) about serious issues, handled deftly but informatively, opens on New Year's Eve with a fairytale princess and a handsome prince. The large number of characters drop hints of their own complex stories (written or to be?) as all the requisite elements of Boy Meets Girl play out in unique directions. Great story, plot and characters, but what struck me most is that I really LIKED everyone--I wanted to visit the town, try the chocolates, and get to know all these great folks.
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1,227 reviews4 followers
July 8, 2017
Sweet Summer's Kiss (Love at the Chocolate Shop Book 10) by Debra Salonen
This is Gretchen Zabrinski and Daniel Andrews' story.

This is a sweet romance that includes chocolate and dogs that at times will have you laughing or crying. Gretchen has a secret and is determined to not get close to Daniel. I fell in love with Daniel's character. He was a lot of fun. Will Daniel be able break down Gretchen's barriers?

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.
Profile Image for Laura D.
999 reviews
July 18, 2017
I love the Chocolate Shop series and this one did not disappoint. Gretchen agrees to go to the masked ball, as a blind date, to shed her good girl image. She wants one night with a bad boy. Daniel is a reformed bad boy. Having recently ended a relationship he is game for a blind date on New Year's Eve. When he meets Gretchen he just knows. Can he convince her to stay and give them a chance? Sometimes you have to find yourself before you can let someone else in. Great read.
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