The cupcake queen is about a 13 year old named Penny whose parents have just separated. Her mom moves them 300 miles to her hometown in Hog's Hollows. She spends the entire summer working at her mother’s new bakery, The Cupcake Queen. Convinced her parents are going to work it out she and her mom are moving back to Manhattan before school starts she decides to hide out and doesn't meet a single person except the delivery people at the bakery. Much to her dismay summer comes and goes and she must attend school in Hog's Hollows. She gets on the wrong side of the popular girl, Charity and is bullied Charity and her friends. She finds a friend and ally in a hipster named Tally. They become close because they can both relate coming from broke homes.
This book touches on some real issues, bullying, divorce, and boys and it's done in a clean way. There aren’t any cuss words in The Cupcake Queen. Heather Helper nails the perspective of a child going through divorce. You can sense Penny’s frustration because no one is being up front with her. You can feel her sadness from being pulled away from her dad and old life, and you see how scared she is of being forced to pick a parent. Her descriptions in this book are spot on, not too wordy and you also get a clear picture in your mind.
Overall this was a very well written and descriptive book. Frankly, I would have given it 4.5 or 5 donuts if the ending hadn’t been so abrupt. There is so much build up with the pageant but you never actually get to read about what happened. She simply tells you the results. I had the same issue with the float. Parts of it were described in great detail but there was never an actual sentence explaining what it was other than ‘random objects.’ It almost felt like those parts were once there but ultimately edited out of the book leaving the reader scratching their head. For that reason I give this book 3.5 out of 5 donuts.
*The Cupcake Queen is a monthly read for Cupcake Lover's Group on Goodreads. Of COURSE I'm part of a group called Cupcake Lovers. lol
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