The protagonists (at least, the supposed protagonists *hint hint* *spoiler*), Alex and Jeremy, are thankfully realistic and likeable. Jeremy could have been developed further, I think, because really, his personality as a “fun, friendly rich guy” is pretty cookie-cutter and generic. However, there’s a part at one point of the book where I was genuinely shocked. It was an interesting twist in what I was predicting, which was nice.
Anyways, Alex is a bit of a Cinderella who has to take care of her needy, clingy mother all of the time, but I actually liked how she succumbed to the temptation of figuratively (and temporarily) “abandoning” her mother and the cake business to go off on a joytrip to Disneyland with Jeremy. Not only does this capture a distinct human flaw that I find is incredibly elusive in most fluffy books, but it also made Alex seem so much more real. Sometimes I feel that she’s a little TOO modest and goody-goody (like, COME ON, bask in the fame, will ya?!) but overall Alex is a pretty good character. Thumbs up on that issue.
If you haven’t realized it yet from the synopsis above, this is a model of a “summer” book. It takes place on a small island town (catering mostly to tourists) and was supposedly inspired by Coronado Island, which I often go to and have taken pictures of. (You can find the pictures on this site.) This gives the story a sort of dreamylike quality of a town who thrives on tourist events, including scuba diving, which is a pivotal aspect of this book. It’s interesting how the setting changes the way the book is written, how Alex and the other supporting characters live, etc. The Wedding Cake Girl manages to take you away from a busy suburbian/city life (or wherever you live) to a hazy, always-summer life on an island just a ways off the mainland.
Honestly, I loved the setting the most, out of all of the aspects of the entire book, just because Coronado holds a special place in my heart. Unfortunately, I felt that the setting became second or even third to the primary focal point of the book: romance. Which brings us to plot.
The romance wasn’t sickeningly sweet–in fact, it was downright confusing. But I liked it that way. You weren’t completely sure if Alex was going to get cozy with Zack, or if Zack was going to two-time Alex and his girlfriend, or if Zack was getting back together with his girlfriend (if they ever broke up at all), or if Alex and Jeremy were going to become a thing. And then this complete BOMB (not literally) spins all that you’ve ever thought about these 4 people (Alex, Zack, Zack’s girlfriend, and Jeremy) into a flurry of confusion, so you’re kind of wondering, “Okay…so who the heck is she going to get with NOW?”
*spoiler alert* (highlight to see) Alex gets together with a guy who pops up spontaneously near the end of the book. Deus ex machina if you ask me.
The reason why I enjoyed this “wondering” about the whole romance aspect was because it’s exactly like real life. In real life, you’re not going to fall in love with one person (although that does happen to some lucky people) and voila, you’re set for life. You’re going to be kind of wishy washy, you’re going to have some sort of affection for different kinds of people (sometimes at the same time), and it’s going to be confusing. It’s not going to be perfect, and it’s not going to be a fairytale. And sometimes, someone who’s right for you may pop up suddenly in your life and take you by surprise.
In one word: realistic.
(But the *spoiler alert* issue was really annoying too.)
TWCG was very fluffy, very YA, and in short: light reading. It combined the harshness (lol) of reality with the pink cotton candy of the romance that every girl wants. The end result is pretty darn interesting, if you ask me.
Of course, this isn’t going to appeal to everyone. However, I’d ask for you to at least give this book a chance. You might like it, you might not. As for me, I’d say that overall, I enjoyed reading this book. It certainly wasn’t the best I’ve read, nor would I probably pick it up again and read it cover to cover, but it was a nice change of pace from the other books I’ve been reading (Pride and Prejudice–on temporary hiatus haha, Lord of the Rings, Cannery Row, Brave New World…).
Final words: if you’re looking for the perfect summery book, pick this one up. Just don’t think too hard on it.
3.5 Stars (good, but not enough to give me food for thought/rave about it for hours on end.)
Until next time,
(PS: keep reading for author bio, purchase links, links to a GIVEAWAY, and an exclusive excerpt from my blog!)
Anne Pfeffer lives in Los Angeles near a large rotating neon chicken head with her
daughter and her dachshund Taco.
Unfortunately no giveaway for you guys this time. However, do check out the tour site for tons of giveaways if you’re interested! Please make sure to say “Twiggy sent me” and link my blog, if you please. (https://sites.google.com/a/myaddictionisreading.com/fall-tours/anne-pfeffer)
Click here for an exclusive excerpt of this book!