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Sweet Nothings (2013)

Ruby McMillan isn't quite sure what is more upsetting: the fact that her husband of 18 years has just declared that he is leaving her or the fact that the souffle she spent the morning slaving over has fallen. At 44 years old, Ruby has never been one to take chances. She has lived by the book, and always made the practical choice, including marrying Walter. Left with an unpaid mortgage, a bakery on the verge of financial ruin and two teenage children to care for, Ruby must step out of her comfort zone in order to make ends meet. Once her daughter gives her a makeover, Ruby gains a new sense of self-confidence, which propels her to start taking chances both with her career and her love life. Soon, Ruby realises that she is capable of more than she ever thought, including experiencing the kind of mad, passionate love she thought existed only in fairy tales. As Ruby learns, sometimes not following the recipe leads to the tastiest treats. Ruby's inner dialogue is very amusing, and I particularly enjoyed the way she used desserts to describe the people in her life. On an editorial note, Walter's new girlfriend Cheryl's name is always italicised, and Ruby's mortgage broker and love interest is referred to by his full name, Jacob Salt, throughout the majority of the novel which I found quite distracting. That being said, this is an enjoyable read that anyone with a sweet tooth will appreciate. (LB)

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