Monday, April 14, 2014

Review: HERE FOR THE CAKE by Emily Poule


"Something should happen: a thunderbolt should erupt, a car should crash, a bell should ring. There should be a soundtrack—some horrible, frightening sound to accompany the news of your ex-boyfriend marrying one of your best friends from high school. Especially when you're still in love with him."

No, of course she wasn't going. Are you insane? For 29-year-old academic Mina Joseph, going to Luke's destination wedding to the venomous Ella Hutchinson would be the ultimate act of lunacy. It would be much safer to stay in her small studio in Boston so she could stalk the Facebook pages of the bride, groom, and every other guest in attendance before falling asleep in a box of tears and Wheat Thins.

But Luke's best man, the insufferably charming Benjamin Fogarty, has different plans for Mina. Both desperate to break up the mismatched couple before they say their "I do’s” and convinced that Luke is still in love with Mina (though he can’t figure out why), Ben offers her a plane ticket and a wad of cash to come out of hiding to seduce the groom. 

Armed with a new wardrobe, devious friends, and copious amounts of tequila, Mina has five days to rekindle her love with Luke, expose Ella for the certifiable psychopath that she is, and at all costs, avoid having sex with the best man, regardless of how hot it could be.


 “So how did it end with you and Ben?” Josie asked.
“Well, after he proposed that I seduce Luke out of his commitment to Ella, he handed me a plane ticket.”
“Yeah?” Josie said, her voice laden with pretend, unenthusiastic surprise.
“How do you not think this is more shocking?”
“Because he bought me one, too.”
“And I took it,” Josie said.
“He’s a lunatic!”
“Yes, another shocking report,” Josie said dryly.
“Has he always been this controlling?”
“Is that a real question?”
“He even gave me $2400 to go ‘do something’ with my hair and wardrobe.”
“How much?!”
“$2400! “
“Did you suck his dick or something?”
“No! Jesus, Josie!” Mina screeched.
“He bought your ticket and gave you money for a makeover. He’s a monster,” Josie said sarcastically.
Mina laughed, “You’re not suggesting that I actually spend his money.”
“Of course I am. Your hair is awful…”
“Woman, you need help. I would try to send you to What Not to Wear but I don’t really think they make anyone look better,” Josie continued.
“Got it, thanks.”
“What’s the worst that could happen? Your wardrobe gets a makeover and you get to party in Costa Rica, for free.”
“In order to break up a wedding.”
“Yes, and if you keep saying it, it’s not going to make it not true.”
“Please, for the love of God, stop proving how consistently fucking boring and predictable you are,” Josie begged.
“It’s not for me to go,”
“Especially since you’re obviously still in love with him.”
“I am not!”
“I mean, why else would you turn down a free trip to Costa Rica?”
“Because people will talk. People will pity me.”
“People you haven’t seen or spoken to in about eight years.”
“Whatever,” Mina said impatiently.
“You are definitely still in love with him.”
“That’s not why I’m not going!”
“If you weren’t in love with him, if there wasn’t some small part of you that hoped you could get him back, you wouldn’t hesitate to go. I mean, if Ben gave me $2400, and I was in desperate need of a computer, you know what I’d do? Spend the money on getting myself done up, then I’d fly down to Costa Rica and get drunk with my best friend Josie on the beach…I’m just saying.”
“I can’t spend his money under false pretenses,” Mina insisted.
Josie snorted.
“Shut the fuck up. He bought a struggling amateur baseball league last year. He has more money than he knows what do with. Take the sponsorship. The future of your reflection needs it.”
Mina groaned. She had a point. She hated when Josie had a point.
“Plus,” Josie whined, “if you don’t come, who is going to save me from making horrible decisions with the hotel staff or the groomsmen? You know how I get with a little tequila.”
Also true.
“You would be a shitty fucking friend if you allowed me to procreate under the influence of whatever satanic worship ritual they are integrating into their wedding ceremony,” Josie added.
Guilt trip and references to Ella being the devil bride?! This girl knew how to play ball.
Josie must have sensed her victory in Mina’s lack of response because she pressed further.
“In fact, if it were me—because you know, unlike you I have iron-clad, Goliath balls—and I was going to see the ultimate ‘ex-boyfriend,’ I would flirt shamelessly with only the hottest men and make him sorry for ever even thinking that he could live without me.”
Mina smiled privately. Yeah, that sounded like a private vengeful fantasy that she had entertained for some time.
“It’s called torture, Mina. The whip is fun to wield, and most men deserve it.”
Torture. Mina always suspected that she would enjoy that form of pleasure.
“Plus, he’s really fat now.”
“Really?” The delight in Mina’s voice jarred even herself.
“No,” Josie admitted, “he looks great.”
“I hate you.”
“And you don’t love him?”
“You’re positive?”
“Prove it.”
And with that, Josie hung up the phone dramatically. Mina flipped her phone closed and laid back in the pile of clothes. She shifted restlessly, feeling the edge of a book poke into her spine. She reached back and held the book in front of her face: Phonetics and Its Impact on the Global Community. Had she really brought this book into bed with her? Josie was always warning Mina that if she let the academia take over her life, she wouldn't have one. Of course, Mina's mother had warned her about that, too, but she generally ignored most of the advice her mother gave her, primarily because her chief concern was her love life or lack thereof.
The love of her life had moved on to some other woman while she sat in her room reading about dead languages and pining over him. Pathetic.
Mina heaved herself up and stood at the foot of her bed, which was exactly in the center of her studio. She had just spent the better part of an hour picking up clothes and books and had only managed to make piles of objects around the room that were slowly one by one, cascading onto one another.

She lived in a bomb shelter. And she alone had put herself there.

She glanced back at the pile of clothes on her bed: a sea of sweatshirts, shapeless turtlenecks, silk scarves, and washed-out jeans. Most of them on the kill list at Goodwill. The urge to drown herself in one of these oversized sweatshirts and eat ice cream until she burst into a gluttonous goo was suddenly gone.

Even if it were Cherry Garcia.

Or Pralines and Cream.

Or Cookies and Cream.

She would not submit.

Perhaps a life detox was exactly what she needed. She would gather all of these sweatshirts and shapeless tank tops into a hefty garbage bag. Her books would remain on the shelves where they belonged. She would vacuum, scrub, polish, and dust. She would make her bed. She would buy air freshener.

She would no longer live like the Old Woman in the Shoe.

That’s right. Mina Joseph was going to sprout wings, dammit.


·      When I’m Alone Lissie
·      Realize Colbie Caillat
·      Someone Like You Adele
·      Runaway Baby Bruno Mars
·      I Love it Icona Pop
·      Sleep to Dream Fiona Apple
·      You Really Got a Hold on Me Laura Nyro / Patti Labelle
·      Wicked Game Chris Isaak
·      My Same Adele
·      Sideways Citizen Cope ft. Santana
·      I Can’t Make You Love Me Bonnie Raitt
·      I’d Rather Go Blind Etta James
·      Love Ridden Fiona Apple
·      Say Something A Great Big World featuring Christina Aguilera
·      Almost Doesn’t Count Brandy
·      You Give Me Something James Morrison



Here for the Cake is one of those books that you find and are BLOWN away with how funny, witty, emotional and just wonderful it is.  When I was asked to review this book for Emily Poule I knew I would enjoy this story but as it turns out I LOVED this story!  I could not stop reading this, I found myself squeezing in a few pages or just a chapter waiting in lines, at carpool and while my kids were eating breakfast.  Emily Poule took romantic comedy and knocked it out of the park!

Here for the Cake was funny, in a fantastic snarky/witty humor that had me waiting to see what else would come out of these characters mouths! I actually choked on my drink and laughed out loud more than once.  I fell in love with the writing style and all the crazy characters in this book right off the bat.  Emily Poule's flow, pacing and comedic timing were a perfect especially when combined with this grand-gesture scheme that Ben and Mina are about to embark on.  

What made this book was the characters!  It starts off simple;  Ben  sweet talking Mina to come to Costa Rica and break up his best friends wedding/her ex-boyfriend's wedding but once this ball gets rolling the madcap adventures begin and the addition of a handful of amazing characters are added to the mix and we get Here for the Cake.  Silly me thought this book would be a predictable story with a bit of humor and I was wrong!  Just when you think something is going in one direction, Emily Poule surprises us and add new layers to the story!  Here for the Cake is a book that you need to read!  Emily Poule pulled off a book that is not only funny but emotion-envoking, it is about friendship, learning to let go and discovering that sometimes the only thing you need to make you happy is to accept who you are and realize that it is OK to want/need more from your life.  

I can't say enough about this book!  I can't wait to see what Emily Poule writes next!  I really hope it is another story with some of the characters from Here for the Cake!

If you are in the mood for something funny, kind of crazy with a cast of characters that you can't help but fall in love with, then Here for the Cake is the perfect book for you!  Emily Poule is an author to keep and eye on, I have a feeling we will be hearing about her a lot in the future!



Emily Poule was born in the most unremarkable city in Iowa with a peculiar propensity towards practicality. She saved every bit of her allowance, stayed in to study on the weekends, collected figurines of small animals, sketched pictures of potted plants, and read period romance novels of the Julia Quinn variety. Then, in her very first semester as a PHD student, she did the least rational thing she could think of --- she dropped out to write chick lit. After some stints as a barista, tutor, and professional dog walker, she finally got her footing as a free-lance writer and hasn’t looked back since. These days, she splits her time between Dublin and Chicago in search of functional Wi-Fi, attractive men, and coffee strong enough to caffeinate an Indian Elephant. She still collects figurines