Wednesday, March 21, 2012

How to Eat a Cupcake: A Novel by Meg Donohue

About book:

Free-spirited Annie Quintana and sophisticated Julia St. Clair come from two different worlds.  Yet, as the daughter of the St. Clair's housekeeper, Annie grew up in Julia's San Francisco mansion and they forged a bond that only two little girls oblivious to class differences could - until a life-altering betrayal destroyed their friendship.

A decade later, Annie bakes to fill the void left in her heart by her mother's death, and a painful secret jeopardizes Julia's engagement to the man she loves.  A chance reunion prompts the unlikely duo to open a cupcakery, but when a mysterious saboteur opens up old wounds, they must finally face the truth about their past or risk losing everything.

My thoughts:

I like cupcakes and I like chick lit, so I figured this would be the perfect read.  Well, it wasn't.  In fact, this book turned out to be a rather disappointing read.  The writing was okay, but it didn't grab me and keep me interested as I had hoped it would.  As for the characters,  they were pretty stereotypical in description and lacked any kind of depth.  And the story lines were all over the place - there were just too many of them crammed into one book. 

Of course, it could just be me.  All of the other bloggers on this tour have written glowing reviews of this book.  Maybe I missed something.  Then again, I'm thinking that this book just wasn't for me.  Now, don't get me wrong, I love the idea of two friends opening a cupcakery - that sounds like an adventure in itself.  However, these two ex-best friends in particular do not seem like they should be going into business together.  Annie clearly can't stand Julia, so why she decides to open up a cupcakery with her is beyond me.  I understand that Annie has dreamed of opening up her own bakery, but is this really her only option to make that dream come to fruition?  Seriously? 

Anyhow, the women work together to open Treat and wind up involved in a series of mini-dramas that never seem to end.  We have a mystery man who lurks around outside the cupcakery late at night.  An ex-boyfriend who ruffles some feathers.  Vandalism and break-ins at Treat.  Pilfering at casa St. Clair (Julia's parents' home).  Secrets being kept from loved ones.  A secret cookbook filled with revelations.  And so much more. 

Yes, I admit that some of the story lines are somewhat interesting, however they were all so predictable, that there really wasn't much of a story to get immersed in.  At the end of the day, this book just wasn't for me.  I think I'll stick to Kinsella or Green when I want to get my chick lit/women's fiction fix.  However, for those who want to give Donohue a try, here is a link to her website.  And just so you can get a different perspective on How to Eat a Cupcake, here is the link to the TLC Book tour site where the rest of the bloggers on this tour can be found. 
Thanks to TLC Book Tours and the publisher for providing me with a copy of this book.


Ti said...

Oh! Too bad this didn't work for you. I hate to be utterly disappointed when it comes to reading.

As always, thanks for your honest review!

Nadia said...

Ti, me too. It really rots when a book disappoints. Oh well, on to the next read, right? And thanks!

Lisa said...

Oh no! Great chick lit never tries to put too many story lines into the mix. It's not that you can't give it some depth but it should never be work to read it.

Heather J. @ TLC Book Tours said...

Darn, I'm sorry this one didn't turn out to be a good fit for you, but thanks for being on the tour.

Nadia said...

Lisa, exactly! Chick lit can definitely have depth, which I've found in Kinsella and Green's works. However, Donohue lacked it in hers. Oh well.

Heather, oh well, this book just wasn't for me. Thanks for having me on the tour :)

bermudaonion said...

It sounds like this book had so much potential. Sorry it didn't work for you.

Nadia said...

Bermudaonion, that is why it was such a disappointment. Oh well, on to the next read ;)

UK said...

A heartwarming tale is what you will find within the pages of How to Eat a Cupcake by debut novelist Meg Donohue! I love a book about friendship and when you throw in the most delectably sounding cupcakes into the mix; well I'm sold! This novel was a pure delight to read with it's beautiful writing and mouth watering descriptions of cupcakes you swear you can taste just by reading about them! Ultimately it's a story that shows us the power of truth and forgiveness; for realizing that true friendship can stand the test of time and troubles.