Vanity Fare: A Novel of Lattes, Literature, and Love by Megan Caldwell
Pages: 400 (paperback)
Source: TLC Book Tours
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A charming novel about a 40-year-old Brooklyn mother, recently divorced, who starts writing copy for a bakery, discovers a knack for food-related literary puns, and becomes entangled in a love triangle.
Molly Hagan is overwhelmed.
Her husband left her for a younger, blonder woman, her six year-old son is questioning her authority, and now, so is she. In order to pay her Brooklyn rent and keep her son supplied with Pokemon and Legos-not to mention food and clothing-she has to get a job. Fast.
So when an old friend offers Molly a copywriting position at a new bakery, finding romance is just about the last thing on her mind. But the sexy British pastry chef who's heading up the bakery has other thoughts. And so does Molly when she meets the chef's intimidating business partner-who also happens to have a secret that might prevent Molly from getting her own Happily Ever After.
There were so many things done incredibly well with this book and few things that just bugged the heck out of me. All in all, Molly really grew on me and found myself able to just sit back and enjoy. Oh and did you see this cover and caption? It's so cute. That alone made me want to set aside a whole afternoon to read this book and drink coffee. If that isn't enough, there are cute catchy book/bakery puns that were quite adorable. I loved them. However, the story didn't quite match the vibe that I was expecting based on the cover and packaging. I didn't find Molly that funny or witty and there were a few contradictions to her character that I just didn't get. The funny/witty moments were there but many just fell flat for me. But that little disappointment aside, this was good read. Molly experienced so much growth and grew into a confident person. Her interactions with her son was cute and seemed real to life. Plus, the romance was super cute. It made me smile and feel all warm inside. Just like coffee. I also liked how the book ended. It threw a huge surprise out but seemed more realistic. The side characters were likable and fun, though a bit one-dimensional. I enjoyed learning about their conflicts and resolutions.
Overall, not what I expected but well worth the read.
P.S. I was quite impressed with the overall vision of this book (geeky I know). I felt like there was a common theme from the front cover all the way through to the description. While I'm not doing flips over the story, I don't think I would give this book away. It's a keeper and I want it in my library.