Tag: Donna Kauffman

Review: Babycakes by Donna Kaufmann.

Posted December 4, 2012 by Rowena in Reviews | 1 Comment

Rowena’s review of Babycakes (Cupcake Club #2) by Donna Kauffman.

Hero: Morgan Westlake
Heroine: Kit Bellamy

Molten Chocolate…Cinnamon Spice…Gingerbread…Old-Fashioned Vanilla…You can’t stop at just one.

And the women of the Cupcake Club love to indulge…

Kit Bellamy was raised on pie. Mamie Sue’s Peanut Pies, to be exact, the family company her scheming brother-in-law sold out from under her. Now Kit needs a new recipe for her life—and sleepy Sugarberry Island is the first ingredient. Running mail-order cupcake business Babycakes is a chance to get her baking on again—until she meets tall, dark, and adorable lawyer Morgan Westlake. New to the island to raise his goddaughter, he’s as mouthwatering as any of Kit’s creations. It’s just her luck that he’s the spawn of the very law firm that helped crush her dreams…

Fortunately, Kit’s new friends can assure her that Morgan is no typical Westlake—and that even lawyers, not to mention single dads, need romance. If Kit can just be persuaded to follow her appetite—and set another place at her holiday table—her sweetest dreams just might come true…

This was a really quick read for me.  It was light and fluffy and didn’t take itself too seriously which I appreciated.  This was a straight up contemporary romance and from time to time, I eat these up.

This book follows Morgan Westlake and Kit Bellamy toward their happy ending.  Kit has moved to Sugarberry Island to start fresh.  She’s heartbroken because she lost her family pie making business and she’s looking for something to fill up all of the time that she’s got on her hands now that she doesn’t have a company to run.  She’s still in that once burned, twice shy stage and coming to Sugarberry is starting to look like a good decision.

She’s overlooking the new addition to Lani’s (from Sugar Rush) new cupcake shop called Babycakes and she’s baking a whole lot of cupcakes which is a nice change from baking pies.  After no time at all, Kit is starting to make a home for herself there on Sugarberry and  when Morgan and his niece Lilly come into her life, more changes are to come for Kit.

The story was cute and cuddly and all kinds of cute but it was really slow in the beginning.  It took me far too long to come to care for Morgan and Kit and even little Lilly.  A lot longer than it did for everyone to warm up to Kit at the bakery.

The romance between Morgan and Kit was cute but there were times when Kit’s indecision made me want to pop her a good one in her head.  It was more than apparent that Morgan was nothing like his family and while I understood her reservations in the beginning, the longer she held out from Morgan, the more I wanted to kick her in the shins.  I was really glad when she let go of all of her insecurities and let Morgan love her.  When that happened, they turned back into a cute couple.

This was a short and sweet romance with a colorful cast of characters that I was happy to get to know.  Even though it was slow to pick up, I enjoyed the story and the romance.  I’m not at all mad that I picked this one up for review.  I recommend this book to those that are fans of the series (Cupcake Club) and fans of the author’s work.

Grade: 3 out of 5

This book is available from Brava. You can buy it here or here in e-format. This book was provided by the publisher for an honest review.

Review: Anthology – To All A Good Night

Posted December 10, 2008 by Holly in Reviews | 1 Comment

This Christmas, sugarplums aren’t the only visions that will be dancing in your head. Prepare to have your toes curled by some of the holiday’s hunkiest heroes in this hot, hot, hot collection. . ..

I really like reading anthologies for a couple of reasons. The main two being to try a new-to-me author I’ve heard a lot about but am on the fence over, or to read something new by an author who’s already a favorite. This anthology falls into both categories for me. I adore Jill Shalvis and wanted to read her entry in this collection. I’ve also been hearing a lot about Helenkay Dimon, but I wasn’t sure if I’d like her or not. Honestly, it was just a bonus that I also got to try something by another new-to-me author, Donna Kauffman.

….Unleashed by Donna Kauffman

When Emma Lafferty is hired by a billionaire CEO to watch his pets over the holidays, she expects to enjoy a quiet Christmas in opulent surroundings. What she doesn’t expect is to spend the week trapped in the mansion with the CEO’s sexy great-nephew??-and heir-whose motives are as shady as his desire is crystal clear….

I really liked the characters in this novella. Emma had a wonderful sense of humor, a great outlook on life and she was charming and spunky. Trevor was a good match for her. Solid, fun-loving and dependable, he really balanced her out. They had great chemistry and their romance was believable – a huge feat for such a short story.

What wasn’t believable was the story surrounding their meeting. Trevor showed up at his uncle’s mansion with the intention of solving a mystery that’s been bothering him since childhood. That was fine and worked as a way to bring the two together. Unfortunately there was no resolution. Or not a satisfying resolution. Once Trevor and Emma started in on their relationship the plot was kind of dropped. It seemed like the author realized that and tried to throw us a bone with the epilogue, but I wasn’t buying it.

3.5 out of 5

…Finding Mr. Right by Jill Shalvis

Brilliant chemist Maggie Bell has a knack for choosing Mr. Wrong, and with yet another lonely Christmas looming, she decides it’s time to alter the equation-and seek out someone who seems totally wrong for her. Enter Jacob Wahler, the rough and rippling contractor who’s about as far from Maggie’s type as he could get. But suddenly what’s wrong for Maggie seems oh-so-right….

It’s no secret that I love Jill Shalvis. She’s the reason I picked up this anthology to begin with. Her entry didn’t disappoint in the least.

Maggie is an absentminded scientist. This character type hasn’t worked for me in the past, but Shalvis made it work. She was fun and quirky. I actually laughed out loud a couple of times, especially when she was drooling over Jacob or rambling off random facts – something she did when she was nervous. I like that Jacob was just an average every-day kind of guy. He wasn’t too over-the-top in any one area.

The plot was well done, if a bit over-the-top. I think the cheese factor was kind of high, but it worked in the end. Oh, one last thing: I like that Jacob and Maggie knew each other from High School. It made their relationship more believable in the end.

4.5 out of 5


……Can You Hand Me the Tape?
by HelenKay Dimon

Natalie Pritchard is desperate. It’s a week before Christmas and she’s lost the naughty tape she made for her now-ex-boyfriend. She’s so desperate, in fact, that she’ll turn to her nemesis Spencer Donovan for help. The sexy criminal defense attorney would be only too happy to assist-but can Natalie afford his price?

This is my least favorite entry in the collection. While I enjoyed both characters separately, I’m not sure I liked them together. Their dialogue felt stilted and didn’t really seem to lead anywhere. The H/H reminded me of my children, bickering back and forth with each other. And the jumps in conversation left my head spinning. Often I was left scratching my head, wondering what in the world they were talking about – or why they were talking at all.

I appreciated Natalie’s predicament, and I liked that she decided to be proactive about taking care of the problem. It was nice to see that she had some self-esteem issues she was working through, too. Not nice that she had them, of course, but nice that she realized she had a problem and was taking steps to fix it. I also liked Spencer. He definitely had a great sense of what was right and wrong. I especially liked that he was the backbone of the company, but from behind the scenes. It was refreshing. Apart they were great, together they didn’t really work for me.

I also thought the villain of the piece, Natalie’s ex, was a bit too overblown and stereotypical. I think maybe this just wasn’t the best example of her work. I might have to try something else by her to see. Of course, this wouldn’t be the first time I didn’t care for an author everyone else seems to love.

3.0 out of 5

Overall I think this was a good buy. Even though one of the stories didn’t work for me, the other two were more than satisfying. Total grade for the collection:

4 out of 5

This book is available from Brava. You can buy it here or here in e-format.