Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Cupcake Audio

Cupcake Audio

Rachel Cohn
For ages 14 and up
Performed/read by: Carine Montbertrand
Recorded Books, 2009   ISBN: 978-1436196703

Cyd Charisse is now eighteen years old, and she has left her home and her life in San Francisco to build a new life for herself in New York City. The plan is that Cyd will go to culinary school, live with her brother Danny, and not think about Shrimp, her old boyfriend. As is typical with Cyd Charisse (or CC), things do not go as planned. First she breaks her leg, then she has a fling that is fun but shallow, then she decides that she definitely is not going to school. On top of this CC and Danny start to argue when Danny decides to become the heavy-handed big brother. CC is adrift and missing Shrimp so badly that she begins to wonder if she made a mistake when she chose not to go to New Zealand with him.

Then things begin to get a little better. CC gets a job in a coffee shop, she makes a few friends, and best of all, Shrimp turns up on the scene, apparently eager to take up where they left of. Everything is as it should be and CC is ready to live happily every after. The problem is that happily ever after is for fairy tales and not for real life.

In this third Cyd Charisse novel Rachel Cohn once again gives her audience a gritty, often funny, and sometimes painfully realistic picture of a young woman’s life. CC is flawed and makes mistakes, she stumbles and falls (often), but she also learns from her mistakes and is willing to accept that sometimes one has to accept that certain dreams just aren’t mean to be – at least for now.

Carine Montbertrand’s narrative is a so effective and captivating that listeners may find themselves laughing out loud (or groaning with disappointment) as they listen to CC’s story.