Thank you to NetGalley, GalleryBooks and Author Amy E Reichert for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review.
I want to start this review by sharing with you my thoughts on this amazing cover, as many of you know, I love foodie books. Just by looking at this cover, not even reading the description, I knew I wanted to read this. Then I read the description and was ready to dive head first into this.
YOU’VE GOT MAIL meets HOW TO EAT A CUPCAKE in this delightful novel about a talented chef and the food critic who brings down her restaurant—whose chance meeting turns into a delectable romance of mistaken identities.
In downtown Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Lou works tirelessly to build her beloved yet struggling French restaurant, Luella’s, into a success. She cheerfully balances her demanding business and even more demanding fiancé…until the morning she discovers him in the buff—with an intern.
Witty yet gruff British transplant Al is keeping himself employed and entertained by writing scathing reviews of local restaurants in the Milwaukee newspaper under a pseudonym. When an anonymous tip sends him to Luella’s, little does he know he’s arrived on the worst day of the chef’s life. The review practically writes itself: underdone fish, scorched sauce, distracted service—he unleashes his worst.
The day that Al’s mean-spirited review of Luella’s runs, the two cross paths in a pub: Lou drowning her sorrows, and Al celebrating his latest publication. As they chat, Al playfully challenges Lou to show him the best of Milwaukee and she’s game—but only if they never discuss work, which Al readily agrees to. As they explore the city’s local delicacies and their mutual attraction, Lou’s restaurant faces closure, while Al’s column gains popularity. It’s only a matter of time before the two fall in love…but when the truth comes out, can Lou overlook the past to chase her future?
Set in the lovely, quirky heart of Wisconsin, THE COINCIDENCE OF COCONUT CAKE is a charming love story of misunderstandings, mistaken identity, and the power of food to bring two people together.
This book begins with a quote by Julia Child, so if I didn’t already think I would love it, I did after that.
The book then introduces us to the main character Lou and her Fiance Devlin. I took an instant liking to Lou, as she spoke about new recipes inspired by how she feels in her clothes. Lou is a true foodie at heart. I also took an instant dislike to Devlin, Devlin calls Lou ‘Elizabeth’, as that is what he prefers! I like an Author who can give you feelings towards the characters in the first chapter.
Next we meet Al, who dubbs Lou as Miss Coconut Cake, as she is carrying the most delicious looking cake when they first meet. As Al and Lou’s relationship continues, we get to know a bit more about each of them. Al is British and is visiting and working in Wisconsin. Lou shows Al her city and as Al gets shown the city, we as the readers do too. Lou is a great tour person and shows us lots of foodie places, I am assuming these places are all real and now I really want to visit. The Wisconsin State Fair has:
Apple Cider Donuts,
Honey Filed Sticks,
Cranberry Scones and
Root Beer Flavoured Milk!
This book made me want to eat out in restaurants all the way through, with the delicious descriptions and scrumptious ideas that Lou comes up with.
“….duck fat roasted new potatoes with ……cherry sage cream sauce. For desert, a chocolate souffle with coconut crisps”.
The supporting characters Otto and Gertrude are almost like adoptive parents to Lou, they are so likeable and such an adorable couple.
I borrowed this Gertrude quote from Amy’s Twitter page @aereichert, its very cute isn’t it.
The book has much more to it than just food though, I loved the characters, the descriptions the storyline and how I could just sail through the book imagining each chapter in my head and really feeling Lou’s emotions, her ups and downs and her hunger.
I thought it was a nice touch to the character that Al was British, so to read how the Author describes the differences between the American ways and the British ways was amusing.
“We do eat turkey in England, just with slightly different trimmings”
There are so many reasons to love this book. I definitely will give it 5 stars and look forward to hearing lots more from this Author.