Book Review: Darlene Panzera’s Recipe for Love

May 16, 2013 4 out of 5, Contemporary Romance, review 2 ★★★★

Book Review: Darlene Panzera’s Recipe for LoveTitle: Recipe For Love
Author: Darlene Panzera
Genre: Contemporary Romance
My Rating: four-stars
My Copy: ARC via Avon
Add to: Goodreads
Synopsis: Relationships can be tricky, but will Mike the magician convince Rachel to break her two-date rule?

Rachel Donovan believes first dates are fabulous, second dates are fun, but third dates? She never sees a guy three times in a row for fear he’ll break her heart, but she’s tempted to make an exception when her coworkers, Andi and Kim, hire Mike Palmer to drive their Cupcake Mobile.

Mike meets Rachel when he’s wearing his black-masked magician costume at a Creative Cupcakes birthday party and then tries to saw her in half. He draws closer while helping Rachel devise promotion plans to outsmart the arrogant new French pastry chef threatening to put the shop out of business.

When a rat runs through the middle of her glitzy promo party and the video is uploaded to YouTube, Rachel fears she won’t be able to save the shop, help her mother pay for her grandfather’s medical treatment, or win back the heart of the one guy she’s come to love . . . or will she?

Darlene Panzera’s Recipe for Love is the second novella in the Cupcake Diaries series. The first novella, Sweet on You is available, and the third, Taste of Romance, will be released next week. If you’re looking for a quick light read then this is the book for you!

Recipe for Love picks up a few months from where Sweet on You left off. Creative Cupcakes is still in business, but the ladies are looking for ways to drum up more business. Rachel has taken on the job to be their social media guru and it’s up to her to expand avenues of income opportunities. Rachel has an important reason for wanting to make Creative Cupcakes more profitable. Her grandfather is ill, her mother is working several jobs, and Rachel can barely afford her pay her car payments. She is lonely and longs for someone to sweep her off feet, but before she can think about dating, the ladies have to deal with Gaston, the new owner of a French pastry shop and Creative Cupcake’s direct competition.

I really enjoyed Recipe for Love! Your heart aches for Rachel and her troubles. I believe we can all associate with Rachel and the need to be strong and wear that mask of handling things. The first time we’re introduced to Mike, I loved the interaction between them. Although, I admit to being creeped out by him during the formal meeting between him and Rachel. It comes down to the fact he knew what she looked like while we were kept in the dark to his looks like Rachel. Once Mike was in her life it was a breath of fresh air! I really liked that she had someone to turn to for support.

The real heart of Recipe for Love is Rachel and her family. Her grandfather is ill and her mother is working nonstop to pay for his medical bills. In many ways Kim and Andi become Rachel’s family by giving her the support she lacks at home. When things don’t go exactly as planned with regards to Gaston trying to close Creative Cupcakes, you can feel the weight of the problems Rachel has. When you’re introduced to the members of the Saturday Night Cupcake Club your heart aches for them as well. I laughed at the references to romance writers in the cupcake shop and no one really trusting them.

Recipe for Love is a delightful read and if you’re looking for a quick light romance I highly recommend this novella. You don’t need to read Sweet on You prior to Recipe for Love, but I do recommend it because you’re introduced to the ladies and how Creative Cupcakes came to be.

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