HomeGroupsTalkZeitgeist
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Vanity Fare: A novel of lattes, literature,…
Loading...

Vanity Fare: A novel of lattes, literature, and love (edition 2012)

by Megan Caldwell

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
8934135,585 (3.56)6
Member:lrobe190
Title:Vanity Fare: A novel of lattes, literature, and love
Authors:Megan Caldwell
Info:William Morrow Paperbacks (2012), Edition: Original, Paperback, 416 pages
Collections:Read, Early Reviewer
Rating:****
Tags:bakery, copywriting, romance, divorce, parenthood, fiction, humor, early reviewers, New York

Work details

Vanity Fare by

None

None.

Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 6 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 34 (next | show all)
cute. I enjoyed the literature/food references. The main character and the author both enjoy romance novels so that tone is there; it was kind of like 50 shades of proust. haha. overall, an easy, entertaining read. No real suprises plot-wise but a cute quasi-survival-story of a recently divorced single mom. ( )
  AAM_mommy | Jun 2, 2014 |
The library had labelled my copy as "romance" - maybe they'd run out of "chick lit" stickers. On the other hand, I was listening to a BBC book show discussion of romance literature the other day and all the romance writers and researchers seemed to agree that the one common feature that united the diverse 'romance' genre was the happy ending. On that basis, Vanity Fare is definitely in the romance category - and that's its big problem. Much of the book is quite good reading: many realistic characters in kind-of-believable situations with an interesting underlying story (who's not interested in food?) containing plenty of sub-plot but not too complex. The self-actualization element (which I reckon is one of the defining aspects of the 'chick lit' genre) was presented in an up-front but not too obtrusive way (IMHO...but other reviewers disagree!). ( )
  oldblack | Dec 2, 2013 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Lattes! Books! New York City! I felt I couldn’t go wrong with Megan Caldwell’s Vanity Fare, a novel that promised witty literary references with a side of scones (man, I love scones). But in the end? I couldn’t help but feel like I’d prepared to tuck into a really great piece of pie and found myself handed slimy kidney beans instead. They were filling, yes . . . but not what I’d been craving.

Now that 40-year-old Molly Hagan is staring down the barrel of impending financial insecurity, a writing gig penning food-related copy for a new bakery seems like the answer to her fervent prayers. She can keep her 6-year-old son fed, care for her bankrupt mother and begin to rebuild post-divorce.

The job working with Simon, a handsome pastry chef expanding into the American market, starts out a little rocky — especially when the charming Brit can’t help but flirt with Molly, who tries hard to project polish and professionalism. But soon business tensions, divorce tensions and sexual tension with another man — the stoic but secretly warmhearted Nick, an assistant of Simon’s — threatens to boil over. And Molly must figure out how to keep it all together.

So, starting with the good, the New York setting and encroaching restaurant opening — near the New York Public Library! — was delightful. I loved the sights and smells depicted in the city, even if Molly seemed to spend half the book riding the subway to meet business associates. Seriously, why all the subway talk? I guess we’re supposed to get that Molly is a Working Mom, you know, and it’s not easy for her to bop around Manhattan like all these other unattached wealthy nitwits. But by the third or fourth depiction of Molly donning a black outfit and commuting from the suburbs, I started to feel a little stabby.

Much of this book, in fact, made me feel stabby. Simon was a jerk. Nick was . . . well, not really a jerk, but still not someone I could tolerate for very long. Nondescript. Vanity Fare had promise but could have chopped off a good fourth of the story, and Molly’s time talking to a therapist was so tedious. Overall, it was just long. And unsatisfying.

I did narrowly finish, mostly due to the setting and foodie talk, but didn’t feel anything for Molly. We just never gelled. And because I never bonded with her or felt interested in her journey, most of the book began to feel like a slog. It was all just . . . eh. A room-temperature glass of milk.

But stars for food-related copy that begins each chapter: Yeast of Eden, Tart of Darkness. Though it wasn’t enough to save this one for me, I definitely dug the creativity. ( )
  writemeg | Jun 28, 2013 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
This was a good chic lit type of story. I enjoyed it. ( )
  kittenfish | Jun 27, 2013 |
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars
A copy of Vanity Fare was provided to me by William Morrow for review purposes.

Molly thought she had hit rock bottom when her husband of 10 years left her and their six year-old son for a younger woman. That wasn't rock bottom though. Rock bottom came when she finds out her soon to be ex-husband has also lost his job (and his ability to pay her child support) and also depleted their savings leaving Molly with nothing to pay the bills. She ends up being hired as a copywriter for a new up and coming bakery. But on top of finding a job she may have also found a new romance. Or two.

Anyone who knows my typical book preferences would likely find it laughable that I decided to read a book regardless of the fact that it stated in the summary that there was a love triangle. Typically? I'd be running for the hills but the concept of this story was too cute to pass up.

I am total sucker for foodie type books in general but I completely fell in love with the concept for this book. I also made full scale plans of starting my own bakery just to be able to do something like this. Molly is hired to come up with a 'hook' for potential customers and it needed to be closely related to the library (which the bakery is across the street from) and/or literature in general. She comes up with the idea to use double entendres to name menu items and the store itself (Vanity Fare). A few of my favorites? The Bun Also Rises. A Room of Ones Scone. Of Mousse and Men. Much Ado About Muffins. And the best? Tart of Darkness. There are even real recipes included at the back of the book for several of these (including Tart of Darkness which I will so be trying, it sounds delicious!)

The romance(s) played a huge part of the story (and possible more than I would have preferred) which I suppose should have been expected as this can definitely be considered a chick-lit novel. But I have a total soft spot for chick-lit and these romances were quite entertaining. The main character, Molly, truly made this book though. She was witty, had a wonderful dry sense of humor, and was such a realistic character just struggling to not give in and let life beat her down. I found the story (and Molly) to be quite inspiring.

A four star rating (and possibly more) was totally in the bag but alas, I found the ending with Nick's big "secret" to not be worth all the build up that led up to the reveal. Overall though this is a fun and delightful chick-lit novel that manages to be charming while still full of laughs. ( )
  bonniemarjorie | May 7, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 34 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
First words
Quotations
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Publisher series
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English

None

Book description
Haiku summary

No descriptions found.

When her husband leaves her for a younger, blonder woman, overwhelmed single mother Molly Hagan takes a copywriting position at a new bakery where she, after meeting a sexy British pastry chef, just might get her own "happily ever after."

(summary from another edition)

LibraryThing Author

is a LibraryThing Author, an author who lists their personal library on LibraryThing.

profile page | author page

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
3 wanted1 pay

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (3.56)
0.5
1
1.5 1
2 2
2.5 1
3 15
3.5 2
4 19
4.5 2
5 3

LibraryThing Early Reviewers Alumn

Vanity Fare by was made available through LibraryThing Early Reviewers. Sign up to possibly get pre-publication copies of books.

 

Help/FAQs | About | Privacy/Terms | Blog | Contact | LibraryThing.com | APIs | WikiThing | Common Knowledge | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | 92,311,492 books! | Top bar: Always visible