Review of Shaken or Stirred by Georgia Beers
It’s been a while since Georgia Beers has written a book series, the last one being the Puppy Love Romances five years ago. This one, instead of being based on a group of friends, features three cousins from a big Italian family: Julia, Vanessa, and Amelia Martini. I think that’s a fantastic idea and I can’t wait to read them all.
Julia Martini is determined to transform the old family bar, Martini’s, into a thriving establishment. She’s too focused on her business to date anyone. Savannah McNally is a caretaker by profession and since her mother died most of her life has been dedicated to taking care of others. When her father starts dating again, Savannah decides that now is the time to take care of herself and maybe try to date the hot bartender at Martini’s.
Shaken or Stirred is book one of three in the Swizzle Stick Romance series which follows the lives of the three Martini cousins. This installment features Julia, the new owner of Martini’s, a bar that has been in the family for two generations. In this novel, we are introduced to the three cousins who are so close to each other that they are more like siblings. Each one has a very distinct personality and they have perfect chemistry together.
It’s not the first time that Georgia Beers has explored the world of beverages. Blend, written in 2018, focuses on wines and A Little Bit of Spice (2015) on craft beers. This book presents the art of mixology, especially the different types of Martinis. Ms. Beers takes the reader to a mixology masterclass along with the inner workings of managing a bar which makes it a very interesting background for a romance novel.
Both main characters are very well written with their strengths and flaws. Julia, the hot bartender, is a workaholic with daddy issues, but she’s also loyal and family-oriented. Savannah is sweet and caring, but always putting the needs of everyone else before her own. Despite their own issues, they connect really well and their chemistry is hot. The book also presents a big cast of secondary characters, mostly extended family, who bring a feel of an authentic Italian clan: loud, overbearing but fiercely loyal.
The romance is a bit on the slow-burn side, which makes sense for this story. I appreciate that the author wasn’t tempted to quicken things without giving time for the characters to confront their own issues. It gave their story a complex but realistic feel. I personally liked Amelia’s character but we’ll have to wait until book three to find out how she finds love.
Overall, a sweet slow-burn romance with the world of mixology in the background. 4.5 stars.