“A balanced diet means a cupcake in one hand and a beer in the other.”
I’d like to preface this review with the statement that romance is not typically a genre I like. Kiss My Cupcake by Helena Hunting is a prime example for why I tend to avoid most books in this genre. And sure, over the years I’ve found some that stand out and are actually enjoyable for me to read. But there are so many that fit into the same category as this one that I’ve found it quite difficult to stumble across the really good ones.
My problems with this book can literally be tied down to that one word. The writing for this book was lazy. The character development for this book was lazy. The set-up was lazy. Everything I read was lazy.
Now, this is a DNF for me because NetGalley only gave me a preview. And in most instances, I include a disclaimer to that effect. For this book, though, I would like to add that I spent some time reading a number of the review for this book and my predictions regarding the laziness appear to be corroborated by a number of them.
Basically, Hunting knows what she wanted out of this book. She had a goal in mind and she got to it. That goal being to get the two main characters into a relationship. And that’s really it. There’s no goal of developing well-rounded characters, no goal of writing deep prose. It’s solely meant to be nothing more than your average romance. And I don’t read for that nonsense.
I don’t know if this book really had a lot of opportunities. What I will say, though, is that there are a lot of misses. Blaire’s parents are never really fleshed out. In fact, beyond existing as a motivation for her to “do well on her own,” they’re basically pointless. And honestly, I find that whole thing disingenuous anyway because collaboration is an amazing thing that I think we need more of.
This book also featured a cupcake shop and barely took any advantage of that. The love interest supposedly had an axe throwing room, but apparently we don’t get to see it except for that brief bit in the beginning when he’s setting it up. And then the reason that their rivalry slowly began to stop? Yeah, that was awful.
I feel like this book could be a stand in for just about any stereotypical modern romance that doesn’t put a lot of depth into its story. Sure, it can be a quick and enjoyable read at times…but it’s also lazy and disappointing in a lot of ways. It’s like those terrible rom-coms that had a small budget and you know are awful, but you watch anyway. The difference, though, between those and this is that at least you can watch shitty rom-coms while multi-tasking and it only takes up about 90 minutes of your life.
You can’t really do that with a lazy romance novel.
I was provided a free copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.