Review of The Groom’s Cake by Jacqueline Vick

Rating: 4.5 stars

A catastrophe has fallen among the citizens of  Crabapple Grove.  Their legendary baker, Imogene Spunkwuzzle needs a new oven and until she gets one,  she has stopped baking.  The townspeople are aghast at the thought of no pies, cakes, tarts, petit fours, spritzes, blintzes or most importantly groom’s cakes.  And no one is more devastated than Charlie Whatnot.  Close on the eve of his marriage to the lovely Penelope Rose, the very notion that he would be lacking in the Groom’s Cake department leaves him “shaking his fist at the cruel whims of Fate” and determined to cancel the wedding.

Enter Walter Fenderbottom, Charlie’s friend and fellow devotee of all Spunkwuzzle baked goods.  Together with local writer and friend, Timothy “Tip” Pinchlet, a plan is devised to raise the necessary funds for the stove, get Imogene Spunkwuzzle back elbow deep in flour, and save Charlie’s wedding to Penelope.  But as said plan was concocted over many glasses of things alcoholic in nature,  what could possibly go wrong?

The Groom’s Cake is a lovely throw back to the gentle British drawing room comedies I am so fond of.  They usually employed witty banter, a leisurely pace,  and a fondness for silly names among the gentility or upperclass.  While The Groom’s Cake may knock it’s citizens down a social notch or two, all the other wonderful characteristics remain intact. There is hale hearty fellows, stout women of unshakeable reputation, and gimlet-eyed yet comely young ladies, waggish dialog and lively contretemps.  What’s not to love?

Nary a harsh word passes the lips of these Crabapple Grove dwellers, even while under the influence of a bottle of gin.  Whether it is Walter’s ever ebullient spirit or Charlie’s good natured determination to get Imogene that stove, their banter is that of best friends going forward, arm in arm. It is a joy to eavesdrop on their conversations, watch as their fool-hearted plans go awry, and generally stumble their way to a solution.

Jacqueline Vick and The Groom’s Cake are a delight.

The book is available here at Wicked Ink Press.

I am so happy I won this book in a contest at  Keith Publications’ Blog.

Cover:  The cover by Delilah K. Stephans is simple yet in keeping with the story.