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516aZBqGJRL__SX311_BO1204203200_-300x478Book Review – When Only Cupcakes Will Do

By Daisy James



setting: England

Dessert Diva Lucie Bradshaw can whip up a grand strawberry crostata, but what about a lasting relationship with her longtime boyfriend, Alex? That’s one of the things that’s been bothering her for years. So rather than wait for him to pop the question, Lucie arranges a surprise proposal at Tiffany’s. What could be more romantic?

Fate appeared to have other plans as Lucie didn’t receive the response she hoped for. Her life, happiness, and future go as flat as a soufflé. Her heartbreak quickly leads to a downward spiral, which crashes and burns when she serves one customer tiramisu with chili powder. This is one confrontation no restaurant owner ever wants to experience: it’s with a food critic. To make matters worse, he was a culinary student she knows. Not just any student, this is someone she was attracted to. This leads to her being fired and a negative food review for the restaurant and her going viral on social media as “Livid Lucy.”

But sometimes when one door closes, another opens. With her personal ties with Alex severed and her employment erased, Lucie has the opportunity to explore her passion and she realizes that perhaps it’s time to take action. A week before Easter, she visits her sister, Jess. She needs a shoulder to lean on and her sister would be easier to talk to then her mother who was a popular TV celebrity cook. Through her sister’s friend, Matt, a talented mechanic with the ability to bring old vehicles to life, she is introduced to a long-forgotten ice cream truck that she recalls from her past. When her sister sees the run-down vehicle, she comes up with an idea for a mobile cupcake business. Weighing the pros and cons, it makes sense. There’s less risk owning it and running a business out of one, then leasing a shop. There’s plenty of demand for cupcake pyramids for weddings and christenings. Kids can even decorate their own cupcakes at birthday parties. Lucie makes her decision to purchase the truck and with the support of her sister creates the Traveling Cupcake Company. After needed upgrades and a lot of scrubbing, Lucie puts her past behind her and dares to take a chance driving toward a better future for herself and her sister. That missing ingredient in her life, rises when she doesn’t expect it.

I enjoyed this slice-of-life novel as the protagonist had the courage to move beyond disappointment. Not only did she regain control of her life, but moved full speed ahead to create the foundation of her business. I think what the author is trying to say is don’t settle for the life someone else wants, especially if its without love, and your partner doesn’t care about your goals in life. The book was fast paced, fully touched upon all of Lucie’s troubles and emotions, and at the same time offered hope. The author didn’t sugar coat Lucie’s frustration and fears or make her hesitant to take chances. I looked forward to reading how her life progressed through positive decisions. Right along with Lucie, I was surprised who her biggest supporter truly was.

Four and a half cocktail-inspired cupcakes out of five

Denise Fleischer


August 30, 2016