Thursday, October 2, 2014

All's Fair in Love and Cupcakes by Betsy St. Amant

All's Fair in Love and Cupcakes

What fun!

The summary:

Kat inspected rows of the same old cupcakes. They seemed to blink back at her, as if they knew she was capable of so much more.

Kat Varland has had enough of chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry.

At twenty-six years old, Kat is still living in the shadows of her family in Bayou Bend, Louisiana. Still working shifts at her Aunt Maggie’s bakery. Still wondering what to do with her passion for baking and her business degree. And still single.

But when Lucas Brannen, Kat’s best friend, signs her up for a reality TV bake-off on Cupcake Combat, everything Kat ever wanted is suddenly dangled in front of her: creative license as a baker, recognition as a visionary . . . and a job at a famous bakery in New York.

As the competition heats up, Lucas realizes he might have made a huge mistake. As much as he wants the best for Kat, the only thing he wants for himself—her—is suddenly in danger of slipping away.

The bright lights of reality cooking wars and the chance at a successful career dazzle Kat’s senses, and Lucas is faced with a difficult choice: help his friend achieve her dreams . . . or sabotage her chances to keep her in Louisiana.

My review:

Our heroine isn’t certain about her identity. She’s getting messages from her family that she’s unworthy, that she can’t be “great,” or break out of her small-town life and hum-drum job. She’s longing for more, but she’s full of self-doubt. Our hero believes in her. A lot.

Our hero was likable but flawed, which worked well. And he truly cared about our heroine. All his certainty about her pushed her to prove herself to herself, which is what this story came down to: going for your dreams, despite doubts and fears.

The romcom elements were fun, though like most romantic comedies, the story was a bit superficial (though not insincere). Still, the romance was enjoyable and believable. I enjoyed watching their adventure, how they had to overcome together. At some points, I felt the pacing lagged a bit. But if you’re looking for a light read, this is it.

I loved the behind-the-scenes look at what filming a show like "Cupcake Combat" might be like. Our family enjoys that type of show, so reading this fictionalization was fun.

And who doesn’t love cupcakes?! A story centered around cupcakes, with a wholesome romance thrown in? Bring it! Enjoy!

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