Book Review

Review: All’s Fair in Love and Cupcakes by Betsy St. Amant

Reality TV has forever changed the scope of options to watch on tv. It’s one of those things you either love or hate. I feel a bit of both towards it. There have been some shows that I have really enjoyed. Survivor was probably one of the first. In later years, some of the shows that were on the History Channel and A&E really began to appeal to me: Pawn Stars, American Pickers, Rick’s Restoration, and Storage Wars. Even some of the Food Network shows have been interesting. 

There is just something about watching people in competition or watching how “everyday” (although some of these shows don’t really have that kind of people on them) work under stress or pressure. Some of them churn out celebrities and some of them create viral entertainment. Reading about an individual on a reality show was a bit different. I’ve always been curious about the “behind the scenes” and such. Whether this novel is accurate or not, it made for an interesting read.

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**I received a free copy of this book from Zondervan and NetGalley in exchange for my honest review**

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.

I loved the concept of this novel. It was something quite different and the setting was more on the unique side. Unfortunately, I didn’t totally love the characters.

Both Lucas and Kat really frustrated me. They were both so wishy-washy with their indecision about moving their relationship from friendship to something more. If it wasn’t for the curiosity surrounding the Cupcake TV show competition, I probably would have sat this novel down.

With that said, I loved the scenes from the show tapings. They were tension filled and had all the drama you would expect in a competition. Including a not so nice competitor. The descriptions of the cupcakes from the competition had me hungry and the judges felt quite believable, as was the host (he even had some corny lines).

Overall, the novel was about the characters discovery of themselves and their dreams and God’s plans for their lives. Their was a great message to be found in the book, and I can appreciate that.

Towards the ending, I started to enjoy the book, despite the “will they or won’t they” reactions I was having about Lucas and Kat. Despite that, the book had some moments that made it pretty enjoyable.

I would love to hear from you! Since gourmet cupcakes feature prominently in this novel, what are your favorite flavors of gourmet cupcakes?

For more on the author or this book, please check out the following links:

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