The Cupcake Diaries, book 1 - Sweet on You

Author: Darlene Panzera

Publisher: Avon Impulse

Release Date: May 7, 2013

Blue Ribbon Rating: 4.0

Format: EBOOK

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Single mom Andi is trying to make ends meet since her marriage ended. Her father is certain she can’t make it on her own and will come crawling back, but she is determined to prove him wrong. She and her two sisters, whose birthdays are each four months apart, meet on their birthdays, share a cupcake, update each other on their lives and make plans. Andi arrives too late to pick up their cupcake for the celebration of Rachel’s birthday so, seeing an extremely attractive man sitting with a lone box, containing one cupcake, she tries to get him to give it to them. Finally, he relents as long as they share it four ways with him. As they celebrate they come up with the idea of opening their own cupcake bakery. Arriving home to a man popping out of the bushes with an eviction notice only makes Andi more determined. But with no business experience, the bank will not loan them the money to cover their start-up costs.

Jake lost his wife to breast cancer, leaving him to raise his young daughter, who is now in kindergarten. He is intrigued by Andi, but most of the women he tries to date are turned off by the fact that he has a daughter. So he is surprised when Rachel calls and asks to meet with them. When Andi arrives, she believes that Rachel has set her up with a date and is embarrassed when the talk turns to business. Jake, as a partner, would be ideal. He has the business experience they need since his family once owned several pizza parlors.

The site they find for the shop is right next to a tattoo shop and the first day they open the cupcake shop starts off with a man being chased through their shop only to be handcuffed in front of them. That should be enough excitement for the day, but as soon as their first customer walks out the door, a group of picketers, led by Pat, the owner of the Zumba studio, force their customer to dump his purchase. This is only the beginning of being harassed by Pat and her group. But just how far will they go to close down their cupcake shop?

A fun story, SWEET ON YOU, the first novella in author Darlene Panzera’s CUPCAKE DIARIES series, is a clever contemporary romance that will quickly capture your attention as you empathize with the sisters and root for the romance between Andi and Jake. Both Jake and Andi are recovering from lost loves and are not sure that they want to get into another relationship yet, but the attraction between them cannot be denied. Jake stole my heart, a widower with a young child, working during the day as a reporter at the local newspaper while trying to spend time with Andi and help out at the shop. Pat comes across as being obnoxious, but the reasons for her behavior soon become evident. With realistic dialogue, interesting characters, family dynamics, humor, a new business, deceit, romance and budding love, Ms. Panzera brings this charming story to life. Be sure to check it out for yourself as I look forward to reading the next novella in this delightful series; RECIPE FOR LOVE, due out May 14, 2013. Definitely a tasty tale!

By Romance Junkies Reviewer: Dottie

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