#Review – The Secret Life of Lucy Lovecake by Pippa James (@PippaJames7) @bwpublishing #baking

lucylovecake

Blurb.

Daisy Delaney’s life is pancake-flat. A talented baker and passionate lingerie specialist, she has wound up with no one to bake for and a career that hasn’t proved successful. But when she starts a delicious relationship with famous French author-chef, Michel Amiel, everything begins to look a bit more exciting.

That is until Michel’s bestselling cookbook is knocked off the top spot by newcomer ‘Lucy Lovecake’. His outdated recipes slide down the charts, while the popularity of Lucy Lovecake’s new dating cookbook is rising like the perfect sponge.

As Daisy teeters on the brink of love, how can she ever tell Michel that she is the mysterious Lucy Lovecake? Could he ever forgive her for finishing off his career? And more importantly, does Daisy even want to be with a difficult, egotistical, down-on-his-luck Frenchman just as her career is beginning to take off? Especially when she has some other very interesting offers…

What does TWG think?

I’m not gonna lie; as soon as I saw the name ‘Lucy Lovecake’, I just knew that I had to read the book pronto. Can you imagine having the surname ‘Lovecake’? I would be Kaisha Lovecake, and damn right, I do LOVE CAKE. It’s safe to say that I was rather intrigued, who wouldn’t be?

Unfortunately, ‘Lucy Lovecake’ isn’t the main characters real name; she goes by her proper name of Daisy Delaney when she isn’t feeling as fruity as ‘Lucy’. Having spent a lot of time in the kitchen whipping up mouth-watering delights, Daisy knows that she can bake well, unfortunately not well enough to rival the likes of Mary Berry or Paul Hollywood. By trade, Daisy isn’t a baker but she can probably rival Ann Summers on their knowledge of lingerie, what with being a lingerie specialist of course. Are you thinking what I’m thinking? Lingerie + baking = ? No, I’m not brave enough to bake in my knickers, but I have a feeling I know who might…

I need to be honest; I did find the first chapter or so, to be a little slow and hard to sink my teeth into. However, after a little bit of stopping and starting the novel, I ensured that I was relaxed and ready for fun before I carried on reading. If you’re after a novel that is straight-laced, innocent and lacking in proper ‘oooer missus’ humour, then this book isn’t for you. If you’re after a book that is full of double entendres, enough cake to fill a bakery (several times), hilarious (yet cringy) ‘omg’ moments, as well as plenty of sass and enough spice to spice up your life; then this book IS for you. Once I had tuned myself into the authors humour and way of writing, I flew through the novel and couldn’t put it down.

I have NEVER read a book as quirky, fun, mischievous and darn right fabulous as Pippa James’ novel is. It’s relatable in so many ways; the only difference is, Pippa James’ characters are being open about their antics and we’re too embarrassed to do so. Daisy Delaney is what I class as a ‘gold’ character; by that I mean brilliant and definitely one to remember. Daisy oozes confidence in ways a lot of women would be jealous of (I was, I’ll admit it), yet her character comes across incredibly down to earth and such fun.

Pippa James has delivered in writing such a unique book which has enough depth and charisma to stand tall above many other books. Even though the main concept of the storyline revolves around baking, lingerie and Daisy Delaney’s life; there is more to the characters (and storyline) that meets the eye. It isn’t all Victoria sponge cake and padded bras; it’s about finding your niche, shoving a cake in your mouth and grabbing your dreams by the suspenders. Going on the Lucy Lovecake journey with Daisy Delaney you’ll find yourself looking differently at the eligible bachelors and finding humour that you’ve been too afraid to make use of; until now.

Such a well written, unique and hilarious read to lose yourself in, go with the flow and indulge in the fantastic person that is, Lucy Lovecake.

Pippa James, I cannot WAIT to see what you come up with next! (I’m rather hoping Lucy Lovecake makes another appearance).

Thank you Black and White Publishing!

The Secret Life of Lucy Lovecake is available to buy right now from Amazon. Enjoy!

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Love cake, ‘Ruby Tuesday’, cake, A.L.Michael and…cake?

Hopefully the title has lured you in with extreme curiosity! Yes? Some of you may know that I absolutely adore A.L.Michael’s book ‘Ruby Tuesday’ and I have been cheerleading the book, and the author, in run up to its release! Today’s blog is a very special one, and I am thoroughly excited about sharing this with you as not only does it involve ‘Ruby Tuesday’, it involves cake! I LOVE cake!
If you have read the first book in the series, you will know that there is on character in particular that adores baking with her daughter. A.L.Michael has given us a very special recipe from that particular character! I’ll hand you over to the lovely author herself to explain!

Mollie and Esme’s Best Banana Loaf 

Hi all, A.L. Michael here, with a little tip from Mollie, one of the characters in Goodbye Ruby Tuesday, book one in the House on Camden Square Series. You’ll find out more about Mollie’s story in book 3, Be My Baby, out in the autumn, but if you’ve read the first one, you’ll know she’s an excellent baker, but she’s also really committed to healthy treats, especially for kids. That’ll happen when you’re brought up on a diet of McDonalds fries and mouldy sandwiches. 

So I’m sharing one of Mollie’s recipes, that even her 10 year old Esme loves! It’s a really versatile recipe, so if you haven’t got a loaf tin, make them into muffins!

Ingredients:

2 – 3 ripe bananas (squidgier the better!)

2 eggs

1/3 cup melted coconut oil

1/2 cup honey or maple syrup

1/4 cup water

1tsp baking soda

1tsp vanilla extract

13/4 cups wholewheat flour

Handful of chocolate chips, raisins or anything else you like! (At Christmas, Mollie adds white chocolate chips and dried cranberries!) 
You can also substitute the coconut oil for stewed apples for a really pudding-like texture (and extra 5 a day points!)

1.Preheat the oven to 165C, and line the baking pan/muffin pan.

  1. Mix the melted coconut oil, honey and mashed bananas.
  2. Add the baking soda, vanilla and whisk it up, then add the flour, mixing it nicely! If you need the little bit of water, add it in!
  3. Add in all the ‘fun’ ingredients, like raisins or chocolate!
  4. Pour it into the pan/muffin tray, you could put some sliced bananas on top for prettification purposes!
  5. Bake for about an hour (Mollie usually covers the top with tin foil for the first half an hour, but if you like it really crispy on top, then you don’t need to!) and check it with a toothpick or skewer to check it comes out clean.
  6. Let it cool and try to fend away little hands that try to take pieces when their mum says they have to wait till after dinner!
    Enjoy!

    I hope you all will enjoy that lovely recipe, and a huge thank you to A.L.Michael (and Mollie) for sharing that with us! If you do fancy making the cake, tweet me @kaishajayneh and @ALMichael_ with a picture of your creation! Lets see if we can get #Molliescake trending on twitter!

    If you still haven’t managed to read ‘Goodbye Ruby Tuesday’ then you can order yourself a copy right now via Amazon Buy Goodbye Ruby Tuesday where it’s currently 99p for a limited time!
    The second book in the series; ‘Nice Day For A White Wedding’ is being released in August! Not too long to wait, but you can ensure you have your copy by pre-ordering it right here: Pre-order ‘Nice day for a white wedding’.

    One last thing from me, if you have read any of A.L.Michael’s books please, please do leave a review on Amazon, it really helps such wonderful books get seen! Thank you!

Meet me at the Cupcake Café.

Meet me at the Cupcake Café by Jenny Colgan.
Published: 14th April 2011 by Sphere.
ISBN: 978-0-7515-4449-7.
Available on Amazon in multiple formats including paperback and kindle.

‘Issy Randall can bake. No, more than that – Issy can create stunning, mouth-wateringly divine cakes. After a childhood spent in her beloved Grampa Joe’s bakery, she has undoubtedly inherited his talent.

When she’s made redundant from her safe but dull City job, Issy decides to seize the moment. Armed with recipes from Grampa, and with her best friends and local bank manager fighting her corner, The Cupcake Café opens its doors. But Issy has absolutely no idea what she’s let herself in for. It will take all the courage – and confectionary – to avert disaster….’

Picking just one of Jenny Colgan’s novels to review first was incredibly difficult, especially as I have several to choose from. It reminded me of when I open my Cookie Monster biscuit tin and try to choose a biscuit; I have a collection of those too so I’m sure you can see the similarities….

I chose the book because it’s about cake, and I like cake…chocolate cake mmmm. Plus, I had the pleasure of reading a couple of Jenny’s books before I got to read this one, she is an incredible writer.

Time to meet Issy. Issy is passionate about all things baking, and thanks to watching her Grampa at work when she was a child; creating delicious treats is all that she has ever known. So instead of fulfilling her dream and following in her Grampa’s footsteps, she became an office worker. However, the city job comes to an end and Issy gets made redundant. Will this be the perfect opportunity for Issy to finally fulfil her dream, or does she come up against yet more obstacles?
After her redundancy, Issy spends time thinking and baking….constantly baking. To see if her dream is actually realistic, she does some research. Along the way she meets a lot of different personalities. Some of those people are more than willing to help her succeed, and the others are quite happy to put up a tent and block her path. Will her Grampa’s advice give her fire to go for it? Or will there be more tents blocking the path? (I’m sure there is a law against that though?)

Do not, under any circumstances, read this book when you’re hungry. Unless of course you have cake, obviously. The amount of delicious treats that Jenny has Issy making is unbelievable. I was salivating. Not on the book, that would be a sacrilege! As always, Jenny Colgan brings you a warm, laugh out loud book that by the end, will make you want to work in The Cupcake Café. Well, I did! Poor Issy goes through a rough time, some of it being quite emotional. You might even end up with something in your eye. Sniff. Despite the humour in the story, it is very heart warming and moving. A story of people joining together for someone they love. Moments of unity. For me personally, having that unity in a story as well as emotion, humour, and cake, it ticked the boxes. With Jenny’s style of writing, she captures the true essence of every individual character and their lives. Because of that, Jenny Colgan makes their lives somewhat relatable to your own life. I found myself getting lost in the book because I felt cosy reading it, and hopefully you will too. It is a brilliant read. Jenny Colgan, you have written yet another smashing novel. It is a pleasure to have you on my shelf! (I’ll give you a cushion, honestly!)