A stolen family recipe has all the ingredients to turn a rivalry into romance…

For Tansy Hill, nothing is sweeter than honey from her farm—except maybe revenge on the man who broke her heart and humiliated her all those years ago. Dane “The Viking” Knudson has been Tansy’s rival since childhood, and though he’s grown into a frustratingly handsome charmer, he’s also standing between her and the best honey award at the Honey Bee Festival, which Honey Hill Farms desperately needs to stay afloat.

Fanning the sparks that have forever flown between them, the competition is on. Sure, Tansy and Dane have plenty in common—more than they’ll admit—but Dane’s plans to expand Viking Honey are also on the line. When buried family secrets come to light, they’ll have to decide whether taking a chance on each other is worth risking the happiness they’ve been longing for.


I’ve been looking forward to this book since the author first mentioned it. Bees are so important to our planet, but I realized that I didn’t know of many fiction books with bees/beekeeping as a central theme in which the story is built around. I was thrilled when given the opportunity to read an ARC.

Main Premise – While The Sweetest Thing is absolutely a romance, the multi-generational family story is just as strong. The Hill and Knudson families operate neighboring Honey Farms and were once friends before misunderstandings and tragedy sour their relationship. Their rivalry intensifies as both vie for the top spot at the Honey Bee Festival. When the story opens, Tansy Hill and Dane Knudson spend more time needling each other than listening. Dane is trying to parent his teenage brother and manage his outlandish father. Tansy’s close relationship with her sisters and aunts is a triumph, but a family secret still has the potential to shake her world. I appreciated how both our main characters navigated the family dynamics. We see mistakes as well as successes. I love that everything wasn’t perfect. I’m glad that this part of their lives wasn’t relegated to background details or filler. Not only did their families enrich this story, but everyone feels like fully formed characters to root for in future installments. I’m already invested.

Bees – I know nothing about beekeeping so this part of the story came alive for me. It was easy to understand as written, but I lost count of how many times I pulled up something online to see (in real time) the action or process described in the book. So fascinating. It made me want to visit a local honey farm to see one in person.

Romance – Dane and Tansy’s romance is a second chance for them. As a result of a jealous high school prank, both have been living for years under the misunderstanding that they were wronged by the other, and for years their interactions were a source of great entertainment for anyone who happened to be around at the time. ‘The Great Thawing’, as I like to call it, happened in such a realistic way that I was completely charmed. Their attraction was obvious from the start, so the key was to get them in the same spot for longer than it took to trade a few insults back and forth. Once they were forced to really talk and clear the air, staying away from each other became near impossible, which, considering the family issues both were dealing with, having each other as support made for some sweet moments. And I liked that their on-page affection remained rated G/PG. It felt more fitting to the overall tone of the story.

Writing Style – Sasha Summers has an easy-breezy style of writing that feels like you’re right there with the characters as the story is unfolding. The language is conversational, and the natural cadence makes for a fast read regardless of the actual page count. Reading a Sasha Summers book is like visiting with friends. 10/10, highly recommend.



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