Dying for Devil’s Food audiobook
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Mel Cooper thought she’d moved beyond the bullying she suffered in high school. Her life is going great – she’s engaged to the love of her life, Joe DeLaura; her two bbfs, Angie DeLaura and Tate Harper, are freshly married, and the trio’s cupcake bakery business is thriving; and her mom has a boyfriend … But an invitation to her 15-year high school reunion puts her right back in that place of torment and misery. She doesn’t want to go, but Angie convinces her it would be good for their business, and good for her to stand up to the mean girl. When that chief tormentor winds up dead, clutching a Fairy Tale Cupcake in her hand, Mel becomes Suspect No. 1. Mel usually uses her sleuthing skills to help others, but this time she has to help herself.
The last entry in this series was just ok for me, and I was worried the author was getting tired of writing about Mel, Joe, Angie, and Tate. This one, however, had all the things I liked – the banter between the characters, especially the use of movie quotes; cupcake descriptions that made me hungry; a mystery that held my interest; and some surprising turns in relationships between the characters. I really liked how Mel was able to stand up to her bully, and see the value in herself. By now, Mel and the rest seem like friends to me, and I want the best for them. This story held my interest all the way through. It felt like the author was re-energized about these characters, and there was a high degree of fun and entertainment.
I heartily recommend this series. I think they are best read in order, because one builds on the next (although you could read them out of order, as the author provides enough backstory in a smooth way to not make people feel left out). And, each book comes with cupcake recipes at the end. I know what I’ll be doing this weekend, making Cinnamon Sinners Cupcakes.
Dying for Devil’s Food audiobook Series Cupcake Bakery Mystery
It takes all the convincing Angie and Tate can do to get Mel to cater, and then go, to their high school reunion. Mel knows she’s going to have to face Cassidy Havers, her high school nemesis who nicknamed Mel “Melephant” because of her weight.
Of course Mel has things to her name, mainly the success of Fairy Tale Cupcakes–and Mel’s engagement to the Joe DeLaura.
But true to form, Cassidy picks a fight at the reunion, and then she ends up dead, and it looks like she was writing Mel’s name on the bathroom wall before she died. Now it’s up to Mel and her crew to figure out who killed Cassidy, before Mel is fingered as the culprit.
I have to admit I resisted reading this book at first, because of the topic of weight and bullying. I’ve struggled all my life, and faced ridicule from school classmates. So the thought of going through it again via Mel was daunting. But I was happy to see Mel come out on top in the bullying department. It was wonderful to watch her face her fears and realize she was more than what those people thought about her. Ms. McKinlay captured the characters perfectly in this book. Some people have a problem letting go of high school, and the people in this book reflect that. I really enjoyed reading about them.
As always, the mystery portion of this book was well thought out and written. I love the way Mel, Angie and Tate work together to get to the bottom of things. Adding Joe in was icing on the cupcake. I thought I had it figured out, but it ended up that I hadn’t, and that always makes a book a lot of fun for me. I’ll have to reread it at some point to see which clues I missed.
The Cupcake series is one of my favorites, and I look forward to a new one every year. I hope the next one works toward Mel and Joe’s wedding.
Audiobook Dying for Devil’s Food by Jenn McKinlay
DYING FOR DEVIL’S FOOD, the eleventh book in the Cupcake Bakery Mystery series, by Jenn McKinlay, is another fun addition to an entertaining series! The three long-term friends, who banded together during the tumultuous years during high school, have created a successful chain of cupcake bakeries called Fairy Tale Cupcakes. I greatly admire the strong bond between Mel (Melanie), Angie, and Tate and how they have strengthened their friendship throughout the years. It’s been fun watching them evolve throughout the series while the author inserts lots of laugh out loud humorous moments. In DYING FOR DEVIL’S FOOD, Ms. McKinlay recreates the angst of bullying in high school when the committee planning their fifteen class reunion asks Mel and Angie to design and provide a huge order of cupcakes for the party. Mel, a victim of bullying, is adamant that they aren’t going to do it and she will not attend their reunion. Angie, on the other hand, has her own plans and she creatively changes Mel’s mind through joining forces with their bakery’s nemesis.
While murder is never good, it’s a little more palatable when a truly awful person is the victim. Such was the case in this newest release. A bully that tormented Mel all through high school and hasn’t grown out of that bullying, is found murdered in the ladies’ room. Unfortunately it’s Mel that finds the victim. Ms. McKinley weaves clues into a tightly plotted tale of angst, ambition, and acceptance. There are many suspects (because there’s almost no one who didn’t hate the victim) but still the author manages to bring some twists and turns to surprise the reader. With a heartwarming ending, this reader is looking forward to the next book in this series.
Fairy Tale Cupcakes serves an amazing assortment of delectable cupcakes! Ms. McKinlay offers several delicious recipes at the back of the book and they all sound mouthwatering.
Audio Dying for Devil’s Food narrated by Susan Boyce
Mel Cooper does not want to attend her fifteenth year high school reunion – she still has memories of being bullied – but her best friend Angie DeLaura insists they go saying this is a perfect opportunity for Mel to show how she has made a success of her life through her bakery Fairy Tale Cupcakes and her engagement to Angie’s brother Joe. Unfortunately, Mel discovers that some people, like Cassidy Havers, never outgrew bullying. So, when Cassidy is murdered, Mel finds she is on top of the list of suspects. Now Mel has to clear her name before she is jailed for a crime she did not commit.
“Dying for Devil’s Food” is the nicely done eleventh book in Jenn McKinlay’s Cupcake Bakery cozy mystery series. This has always been a light, fun series and this book is no exception. I love the main characters – Mel, Angie, Tate, Joe, Ozzy, and Marty – and they are especially good in this book. The series may be light but the characters have grown throughout the series, especially Mel who has been haunted by the teasing she received in high school. The school reunion setting is nice but I hope that people in real life are more mature than some in this book who seem to have never left high school! The school reunion does provide a perfect set up for the murder and gives plenty of suspects. As for the mystery – it is well done with lots of twists and turns and a very real surprise as the killer and motive were revealed.
Free audio Dying for Devil’s Food – in the audio player below
I have read all of the Cupcake Bakery Mystery series, so I was a bit skeptical to purchase it after reading some critical reviews.
However, this book does not disappoint! Everyone I know, including myself, was bullied in school. The memories are painful. Author Jenn McKinlay creatively crafted everyone’s worst nightmare of facing your personal bully in a high school reunion. Here, Mel faces her bullies, who haven’t changed, and courageously begins to understand them. In the end, she is stronger and a better person, simply by being herself: an accomplished businesswoman, a valued friend, and a sympathetic listener.
I highly recommend this book if you have gone through bullying in school and want to walk with Mel as she valiantly confronts her fears, including her lingering doubts about herself and her worth. Is she still the person she was in high school, or has she grown and is capable of forgiving them? Read and find out!
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