Union Street Bakery – Review

The Union Street BakeryUnion Street Bakery by Mary Ellen Taylor
Age: Adult
Genre: Chick-Lit, food-lit
Source: Publicist for my honest review
Publisher: Berkeley Original Paperback, 2013
Find this book at your local library

After having lost her dream finance job in Washington DC, Daisy McCrae moves back to Virginia, and re-enters her old life. She’s living with her parents and helping her two sisters take care of the bakery that’s been in their family for generations. Upon coming back to the small town of Alexandria, Daisy is haunted by ghosts of the past, literally and figuratively. When she was 3, she was abandoned in the bakery by her birth mother and was adopted by the bakery owners, the McCrae’s.

Still licking her wounds from losing her job and lifestyle in DC, Daisy receives a 150 year old journal from Mabel Woodrow, the oldest woman in town, shortly after Mabel passes away. Now, as Daisy tries to make sense of her life, and the life of Susie the slave girl who wrote the journal, she discovers that the past isn’t meant to be forgotten, it sticks around and forces you to look ahead into your future.

Although it falls into the category of chick-lit quite easily, there is a bit more substance to this book. I loved the way she wove history and modern times together, syncing the two storylines together. Although it was a tad predictable, it was still an enjoyable read. The mention of the baked goods helped keep my interest in the book, as do the recipes in the back. There were a few issues with continuity, but since I read and ARC copy, I’m sure those issues have been edited since the final printing.

My only other complaint is that I wish the author had expanded or better incorporated the ghosts of the past more. I could see where she was going with them, and I thought it would make this book much more gothic and eerie, but I don’t think that was the author’s tone. Instead, the ghosts seemed listless an didn’t really serve a purpose. Plus, I didn’t understand Daisy’s reaction to them, at all. It seemed to easy-going.

Overall, this is a really fun read, one that’ll have you pulling out your mixing bowl and baking supplies from the pantry. One that’ll make you want to research your family tree and learn about your past. It’s a book that you have a chance to win if you enter my giveaway! Click here to enter.  The giveaway runs until the 14th, so you still have plenty time to enter.


5 responses to “Union Street Bakery – Review

  1. I’m heading to DC tomorrow, and I always like to pick up a novel from the area I’m going to be in. This sounds like the one I should get.

  2. This sounds like a fun read. Thanks for the review!

  3. Even though I don’t always love chick-lit, I’ve been wanting to read this one because of the foodie elements. I’ll keep my expectations realistic. 🙂

  4. Hmm… as a current resident of Arlington (just north of Alexandria), I think I might be too critical of the setting to really give this one a fair chance. That said, one of my friends gives ghost tours in Old Town Alexandria on a regular basis, and might find this interesting fodder for her tours. Thanks for sharing!

  5. a book set in a bakery has to be good. Thanks.

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