By: Judith Fertig
Published Year: 2016
This book was provided to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This in no way shape or form influenced my opinion.
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Summary (Provided by Goodreads): A crisp tang of citrus that is at once poignant and familiar, sharpening the senses and opening the mind to possibilities once known and long forgotten...
Claire “Neely” Davis is no ordinary pastry chef. Her flavor combinations aren’t just a product of a well-honed palate: she can “taste” people’s emotions, sensing the ingredients that will touch her customers’ souls. Her gift has never failed her—until she meets a free-spirited bride-to-be and her overbearing society mother. The two are unable to agree on a single wedding detail, and their bickering leaves Neely’s intuition frustratingly silent—right when she needs it most.
Between trying to navigate a divorce, explore a new relationship, and handle the reappearance of her long-absent father, Neely is struggling to make sense of her own conflicting emotions, much less those of her hard-to-please bride. But as she embarks on a flavorful quest to craft the perfect wedding celebration, she’ll uncover a family history that sheds light on both the missing ingredients and her own problems—and illustrates how the sweet and sour in life often combine to make the most delicious memories...
Beautiful cover! It looks so summer, I know I would’ve picked it up off the shelf. When I read the summery, I knew I needed to read this book. Since I enjoyed Wedding Girl so much, which was also about a baker, this book became a must read for me.
What I thought
In the end, I think I liked half of this book.
Claire “Neely” Davis is a baker who can taste feelings and events. Feelings such as manipulation, for example, come across as a bitter lime taste in her mouth. She uses this ability to find the perfect option for her customers. The bride and mother of the bride that she is working for, however, cannot agree on anything and Neely can’t seem to get a taste on the bride. In addition to this, flashbacks to a small hillbilly town in Kentucky are thrown in.
When I say I liked half of this book, it’s because I didn’t care for the flashbacks at all. They seemed disconnected and confused me more than added to the story. I found myself skimming these chapters just to get enough information to know if it was referenced in present day chapters.
If the book had only been about Neely and her business and her life, I think I would’ve enjoyed this book so much more. I really liked the unique ability that Neely had and it never came across as over the top. The fact that she could not only read feelings through tastes, but also occasional received visions was an interesting twist on your usual contemporary fiction story.
Neely is also dealing with a difficult divorce. Her current husband, a pro football player, is refusing to divorce her and is threatening to enforce their prenuptial agreement. Now, there is a book prior to this one with the same characters called The Cake Therapist. I have not read that one, but I assume there is more to this relationship in the first book. I think because of that I wasn’t as fully invested in the characters and they seemed a little underdeveloped.
If I could have taken out the flashbacks and added more detail and story to the present day chapters, I think this book could have been great. As it was, it was enjoyable but it just seemed like the shell of what it could have been. The characters, while enjoyable just didn’t have much meat on their bones.
By: Judith Fertig