A few months back, I received an e-mail asking if I was interested in reviewing a book for kids titled The Cupcake Club. The main character in the book is Meredith’s age and seems to share Meredith’s love of cupcakes. The main author of the book is the co-author of Soul Surfer. Meredith LOVED that movie. The “mean girl” in the book is NAMED Meredith. Too many coincidences. I couldn’t pass it up.
When I told Meredith about the book, she asked if SHE could review it. She read the advance copy in less than a day and gave me the following summary:
The Cupcake Club is about a girl named Kylie who has a drama teacher named Mrs. Valentine. Mrs. Valentine is Kylie’s favorite teacher. Mrs. V will be having twins and going away, and that makes Kylie really sad. When the new drama teacher arrives, they put on a play and Kylie thinks Meredith has done something to her hat because the pipe cleaners wouldn’t come off and when the show was over, the new drama teacher told Kylie to come backstage with her. She gave Kylie a red velvet cupcake and told her how when she was younger, her hair was the color of red velvet cupcakes, and now red velvet cupcakes are her favorite. She also tells Kylie that she was bullied in school, and that she started bringing in homemade cupcakes, and pretty soon the bullies weren’t important anymore, because everyone was loving the cupcakes she made and that motivated her to stay happy. Kylie decides to start up a cupcake club.
Kylie and her friend Lexi make a cupcake club with a few other girls. In the cupcake club, they bake cupcakes. On the first meeting, they made muffins that didn’t turn out very well because they didn’t follow the recipe correctly. The muffins were crunchy with eggshells. Eventually, they make cupcakes for a bakery and they bake a cupcake for the Golden Spoon Gourmet Grocery and the money goes toward the new EcoCenter.
In the end, it was field day, and in a tug of war game, Meredith fell down and lost her necklace. Everyone looked all over for it, and then Kylie found it! Kylie gave it to Meredith, and Meredith hugged her unexpectedly.
I loved this book because it has cupcakes in it, and I love cupcakes. It also teaches the lesson that you should like yourself for who you are and don’t be quick to not like other people.
When I told Meredith that she could actually interview the mother/daughter team who are writing the series together, she flipped out. We typed up her questions, we sent them off, and we received our answers from Carrie (the nine-year-old co-author of the book) the very next day.
Meredith: Did you actually prepare the recipes that appear in the book? Which one is your favorite?
Carrie: I made them with my recipe developer, Jessi Walter. My favorite is definitely the Maple Red Velvet cause I am an RV girl!
Meredith: How did you write the book together? Did you base the characters on people you know?
Carrie: I based the characters on my friends, teachers, family…A LOT! We write the book starting like this: We talk about it first. Then, my mom writes a first draft. She prints the whole story out and I have to read it and edit it. Once my mom has added in my changes, she prints it out again, then I edit it…we do this about 7 times in total.
Meredith: Will there be a second book? (I hope so!)
Carrie: YES! There will be at least 4 books! We just finished the second book: The Cupcake Club: Recipe For Trouble. It comes out in November!!!!!!!
Meredith: If there IS a second book, will Meredith and Kylie become friends?
Carrie: Meredith is still in the picture–but Meredith doesn’t bully her anymore and Kylie learns to deal with her.
Meredith: Do you see Kylie and her friends opening a bakery when they get older? I hope so! And I hope you write a book about it!
Carrie: We don’t have that planned right now–they’re only in 5th grade in the second book. But it’s one of Kylie’s big dreams so great idea!