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A month and a half ago, Rachel, with her best friends and partners, sisters Andi and Kim, opened their bakery, Creative Cupcakes, along with Andi’s boyfriend, Jake, their fourth partner who financed the business. Rachel not only helps with the baking and working the counter, she is in charge of promoting the business. The bakery is struggling financially and to make matters worse, they have competition in the form of a French bakery which has just opened down the street. The chef who owns the French bakery is very unscrupulous and does whatever he can to eliminate his competition.
Walking through the kitchen doors with a tray of cupcakes, Rachel is shocked to discover a masked man. Believing it is a hold-up, she drops the tray of cupcakes, only to discover that the man is the magician hired for the birthday party being held in one of the side rooms for the daughter of a local police officer.
Mike Palmer takes on a variety of odd jobs to make ends meet. He is not only a magician, he makes sets for movies so intricate that even close up the scenes look real. Right from the beginning he is fascinated with Rachel and asks her out on a date. But unbeknownst to him, she has a two date rule. She loves first dates and even enjoys second dates, but after that things always seem to go wrong, so she refuses to allow a guy a third date. As he helps her try to outwit the French competition, they grow closer.
But events at her glitzy promo party soon stir up problems when a rat runs through the bakery during the party and is caught on tape and uploaded to YouTube. Her actions at the party also seem to strain her relationship with Mike. So now Rachel must figure out a way to save the bakery, get back into the good graces of her partners, help her mother with her grandfather’s Alzheimer’s and hopefully, win back the man she loves. Will she be successful, or will she lose everything and everyone important to her?
A fun read, RECIPE FOR LOVE, the second novella in author Darlene Panzera’s CUPCAKE DIARIES series, is a witty contemporary romance. A quick reads, it is an ideal afternoon’s escape, which will leave you with a craving for cupcakes. I could not help feeling for Rachel who was dealing with problems both at home and at work. Mike was just what she needed. He could see her for who she really was, unlike any man she had ever dated before. I loved the two of them as a couple. By combining humor, sabotage, dealing with Alzheimer’s, delectable cupcakes, tender romance and true love, Ms. Panzera has penned a delightful story. Although this story can be read as a standalone, I recommend also reading the first book in this wonderful series, SWEET ON YOU, for further insight into the series and additional enjoyment. To handle any cravings which may result, Ms. Panzera has also provided a cupcake recipe at the end of the book. Be sure to pick up your own copy of this tasty novella.
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