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Emily Belden Books In Order

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Hot Mess (2018) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Husband Material (2019) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Non-Fiction Books

Eightysixed (2014) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Emily Belden is a Chick Lit, Memoir and fiction author best known for her debut novel “Hot Mess” which she published in 2018. Belden is a 31-year-old novelist from Avondale, West Loop though she was brought up in Elmhurst. For her college studies she went to Creighton University, where she got a degree in Journalism. It was while she was in college that she got interested in copywriting and took an advertising class that got her advertising jobs at several advertising agencies in Chicago after she graduated. She believes that journalism would not have worked for her since she has a very creative mind and reporting news just would never have cut it. For instance, she showcased her creativity when she tiled her bathroom floor with 60,000 pennies and wrote a post about it that went viral. But she got even more popular with the publication of her memoir in 2014 titled “Memoir about Unforgettable Men, Mistakes, and Meals in 2014.” While it was, for the most part, a republishing of the blog posts about her life experiences, it was very well received by critics and readers alike. Belden is currently the lead writer in the adaptation of the book into a TV series by the name “All of the Nope.”

A few years ago Emily met the up and coming chef that would later be the inspiration for the lead character of “Hot Mess,” Benji Zane. He was getting out of a taxi while she was getting into it and they made some small talk. The man was in town, where he had been offered a job at Alinea though he had a lot of baggage alongside the hype. She developed a relationship with the man though the relationship did not go anywhere. However, the man did introduce her to the posh Michelin restaurants that would soon become the setting for her best-known novel Hot Mess. Prior to being introduced to the elite restaurants she had worked the typical boring job as a server at a fast food joint while she was studying. But in Hot Mess she writes a good story that relates to the ordinary person. Readers do not need to be Food Network junkies, have a culinary degree or have been in a relationship with an addict to enjoy the novel. Emily Belden writes an intriguing novel that keeps one flipping the pages wanting to know what happens next in the love affair between Benji and Allie.

Emily Belden takes a different approach to her novels than your contemporary fiction author. They are more like talking to a friend in a dark bar while sipping on a cocktail. In her first published novel “Hot Mess,” she introduces Allie Simon a woman dating an upcoming chef that is also one of the most sought after in town. With trust and faith in her hunky boyfriend, she invests all of her savings in a Michelin Star restaurant for her boyfriend Benji. But then he goes missing on a drug binge a few weeks before the restaurant is to open and she has to make the biggest decision of her life. In her memoir “Eightysixed” Belden is a sarcastic and hilarious storyteller that would make the best Friday night drinking partner in Chicago. She writes relatable stories of her experiences in the culinary world of Chicago which would totally convince one to visit the Logan Square or Aline restaurants. All of Belden’s novels are very voice-driven and feel like you are just sitting down with a friend you have known for years. While they have some dark themes such as destructive relationships, debt, and addiction, they are also funny, witty and snarky.

Emily Belden’s first novel “Hot Mess” introduces Allie Simon a woman that never once thought she would find herself in a relationship with a recovering drug addict. But then she ran into the hottest up and coming chef in Chicago, Benji Zane. Zane is known for his exceptional culinary skills and his hard-partying ways. Six months after they start dating, the chemistry and food they enjoy are extraordinary though the reality of living with a cooking protégé is not all that one may think it is. But Allie believes that with enough love she can fix Benji’s soul. As such, when he is offered the chance of a lifetime to build a career by becoming chef de cuisine for a new Michelin star restaurant, Allie is determined to make it work. She invests all of her savings to ensure that he gets the job at Chicago’s foodie hotspot on Randolph Street. But not even a month has gone by when she learns a painful lesson: it is almost impossible for an addict to change his ways. The pressure is too much for Benji who relapses and goes off-grid disappointing not only his girlfriend but also the restaurant. Allie has nothing but a withdrawal slip and a restaurant that needs to open. Instead of walking away from it all, she decides to take the challenge and is thrust into a world of sensory delight, cutthroat business, luxury, and greed as the newest chef in town. She can either fight like hell and reap the financial and personal rewards or crumble into nothingness.

“Eightysixed: A Memoir about Unforgettable Men, Mistakes, and Meals” the first book by Emily Belden is a great memoir. Emily tells of herself as a twenty-something girl who is very naïve when it comes to love. As a hopeless romantic, this is quite the problem that is also compounded that she has just come out of a failed relationship. But she has never been one to give up and she is determined to get back into the dating scene. She goes deeper into the rabbit hole that is Match.com as she wants to get the most out of her subscription. In her quest to heal from a broken heart, her dating pool is soon full of perverts, drug addicts, embezzlers, and even pimps. But just as she thinks getting drunk with some wine back at home might be the best way to find happiness she gets into a chance encounter. The event is going to change her life in a huge way.

“Husband Material” is Belden’s 2019 novel that tells the tale of the unpredictability of love. Charlotte Rosen is a twenty-nine-year-old woman with a secret – she is a widow. She had worked hard since that tragic day that had almost made her give up on life. She now has a job she likes at one of the biggest social media analytics companies, a dog, and a roommate who knows nothing of her past. She has always been a number cruncher and always calculates the probability of risk so that she can take out the necessary precautions. But she would never have imagined or even took time to calculate the probability that she would find her husband’s ashes on her doorstep five years after his death. She is determined but stunned by the happenings but she sets out to find the meaning of all that is happening. Her investigations soon involve her perfectly difficult and perfectly coiffed ex-mother in law and the best friend of her dead husband that is soon one of her staunchest allies. But then a shocking secret is revealed and Charlotte has to consider the possibility of forgiveness and answers questions she thought she would never have to ask. And when she gets a chance at love she has to make a decision between trusting her heart or the numbers.

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