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The Cupcake Queen (The Cupcake Queen #1)

3.85  ·  Rating Details  ·  6,669 Ratings  ·  700 Reviews
A confection of a novel, combining big city sophistication with small town charm. When her mother moves them from the city to a small town to open up a cupcake bakery, Penny's life isn't what she expected. Her father has stayed behind, and Mom isn't talking about what the future holds for their family. And then there's Charity, the girl who plays mean pranks almost daily. ...more
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published September 17th 2009 by Dutton Books for Young Readers (first published July 10th 2009)
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Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. SeussThe Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake by Aimee BenderTwilight by Stephenie MeyerThe Cupcake Queen by Heather HeplerMake Lemonade by Virginia Euwer Wolff
Food on the Cover
4th out of 708 books — 350 voters
The Cupcake Queen by Heather HeplerIt's Raining Cupcakes by Lisa SchroederSprinkle with Murder by Jenn McKinlayIf You Give a Cat a Cupcake by Laura Joffe NumeroffButtercream Bump Off by Jenn McKinlay
Cupcakes on the Cover!
1st out of 139 books — 104 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Dec 13, 2009 Cara rated it it was amazing
I have a confession to make. It was the cupcakes on the cover that got me. I mean don't they look so delicious? I could just feel my mouth water by just looking at them. It's no wonder lately I've been craving cupcakes...

Penny Lane feels out of place since she has moved to middle of nowhere Hogs Hollow. Her mother has opened up a cupcake shop and Penny's parents are taking a "break". Penny just want things to get back to how they use to be but she finds out quickly that things don't always work
May 25, 2010 laaaaames rated it did not like it
Shelves: unfinished
You know, life's too short, and when I don't like a book in chapter two I'm really probably just not going to like it. I tried to power through after getting offended in the first chapter (more on that soon) but when the tale of parental separation and move to a small town sounded so cliched I could have just filled in all the blanks for Hepler, I put this one down.

Hey, so, writers? I am many things: loudmouth and opinionated and really into musical theatre and also: I am whatever you want to ca
Nov 04, 2009 Nicole added it
When I finished THE CUPCAKE QUEEN by Heather Hepler, my first thought is that the cover is slightly misleading. But not in a bad way. You can look at the cover and think you'll be getting a cute, fun story but this book has a lot more substance to it. While it was an adorable quick read, it dealt with some issues that not only teenagers can relate to, but also others as well--a child's relationship with their parents. The main characters all had problem with their problems they had to deal with, ...more
Emma S
May 01, 2011 Emma S rated it really liked it
Pink Frosting with Black Sprinkles
How would you feel if you left your home town and where alone? The Cupcake Queen by Heather Hepler is a great book that shows sadness, happiness and lonliness to a girl in a new town.
Penny is a city girl with separated parents who just moved to the middle of nowhere, Hog’s Hollow. Hog’s Hollow is a small town with no tall bulidings or the smell of coffee and ciaggrettes in the morning. Hog’s Hollow is a place where people grow there own tomatoes and build a s
Sep 30, 2015 Trisha rated it liked it
Shelves: owned-physical
"running from your trouble, the problems is with the stopping. The whole time you think you're getting away from everything, the trouble is running like mad, too, trying to catch up with you. And it doesn't slow down when you do - it keep on sprinting. So when trouble finally reaches you, it hits you hard."

This is a pretty wonderful story. Because it feels like a true story. Moving is hard. Moving as a young teen is even harder. Starting a new highschoool, struggling to understand what's really
Oct 18, 2009 Myra rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Fans of YA Lit
Shelves: favorites
Heather Hepler rocks!

I've read the novels that Hepler co-authored with Brad Barkley and they were wonderful, but her first solo novel is truly awesome! There is the common storyline of the "new-girl-in-town-and-doesn't-want-to-be-there," but Hepler freshens up the storyline by bringing her own unique twists to it. The characters in The Cupcake Queen are believable, quirky, and so well written that you, too, will find yourself disliking Charity and her peeps as much as Penny does. The rich descri
Oct 11, 2009 Kristi rated it liked it
Cute and sweet as the cupcakes on the cover!

The Cupcake Queen was just that, a very cute book. It dealt with some serious issues, like divorce, but it didn’t have much depth to it. It could have easily been much more cliche than it was, but thankfully Hepler makes it a little more interesting and incorporates some fresh ideas. Although, I will say I’m really tired about reading about the MC getting picked on by the spoiled rich popular girl.

Penny was a likable character, as was Tally and Blake.
In The Cupcake Queen by Heather Hepler, Penny Lane (her father loves the Beatles) is living far away from her hometown NYC. Hogs Hollow is everything "not NYC": small town USA known for its pork products! Penny's mother decides to open The Cupcake Queen, a cupcake bakery, in her hometown of Hogs Hollow while working through a divorce with Penny's father. You travel with Penny through her trials and tribulations, cheer for her with her triumphs, laugh with her and her best friend Tally, and cry w ...more
Jen  (Today in Jen's Library)
Nobody really bothers with cake anymore - it's cupcakes that everyone wants these days. They make a great backdrop for a cute coming-of-age storyline.

This is the story of Penny, whose parents are separated. She's moved with her mom to somewhere north of New York City, about 300 miles north to a small town called Hogs Hollow. It's a beach town despite the clear farming reference. Penny is a 14-year old freshman in high school and is learning to cope with high school, new surroundings and her mom'
Jan 08, 2010 Valerie rated it really liked it
This book reminds me of why I’d started reading when I was 13 in the first place. It was good to remember. Although I wasn’t really like Penny when I was 14 I could see her point of view fairly well.

Penny is in a rough patch at the time we see her. She has moved from the city and now needs to make new friends at this new school with a mom who won’t talk to her and a dad who is busy. I can never fully sympathies with kids who make moving this big sob story but that is just me, but she doesn’t ma
Nov 03, 2012 Agatha rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
More like 3.5

I started reading this two or three hours ago. It was cute and fluffy but it had depth. I definitely enjoyed reading it and mostly breezed throughout the book.

The thing I probably liked best was Ms. Hepler's description about everything. It was like I was also in Hog's Hollow, experiencing things with Penny and seeing the environment she sees. I loved how intricate and elaborate the descriptions are. My imagination went haywire as I visualized everything I've read in this novel.

What do you expect of a book called "The Cupcake Queen"?
Something sweet? You'll find plenty of that. Cupcakes, cupcakes, cupcakes, but also young love, real friendship, and cute pets.

On the even-more-plus-side, there are also real problems to be dealt with. Parents abandoning kids, parents putting up impossible choices, other kids being totally mean, ... the list goes on. And, thankfully, the author doesn't present you with endless discussions or how and why protagonist Penny thought about thi
Kayla (The Thousand Lives)
This was a cute, quick read that reminded me of the feeling I get when I read a Sarah Dessen book. Oh, and I'm also now craving cupcakes <3
Sandra Dussault
Rendue à la moitié, j'ai décidé de mettre fin à mon agonie.
Résolution pour 2016 : Ne plus jamais choisir un livre pour sa jolie couverture...
Kati Kettleson
Oct 20, 2014 Kati Kettleson rated it really liked it
The Cupcake Queen was a fabulous book. In the beginning you find out that Penny just moved to Hog's Hollow from New York with her mother, Elizabeth. They moved into her Gram's house on the beach, because her parents were separated. You also find out that her mother bought and now runs a bakery in Hog's Hollow. The first client they had was Charity's mother for Charity's birthday party. That's where all of the hatred began. While Penny was setting up the cupcake display, Charity's dad made all of ...more
Angel / YA rules!/
Nov 09, 2012 Angel / YA rules!/ rated it really liked it
Shelves: kindle, food-delight
why is it that the food books i've recently read tackles a lot more deeper topics other than food?

it's a light read that deals a lot with change. Penny and her mom moves in with her grandmother after her parents separated. Not only does she have to deal with the separation but she had to deal with a new school and with bullies.

i like her friend Tally who helps her deal with the bullies. i find her romantic interest Marcus cute.

all in all, an enjoyable read.
Sep 21, 2015 Kry rated it really liked it
Somebody had suggested this book to me, saying that they found the book surprisingly good. So, I went ahead and read it as well. Sure, it was a bit slow at the beginning and it was hard to catch my interest, but I continued anyways. It wasn't much later until I spent my time finishing up the book, wanting to see how it would end. At the ending, while it may have skipped some parts of Penny's life that I did want to read the most, the author left you with a few clues to figure out what happened h ...more
Brooklynn Erickson
I love the cover of this book. It’s adorable, so basing the plot off of the cover I thought I was going to get an adorable story. The story had more depth to it than I had thought. It is a quick read. This story dealt with issues that many ages can relate to. A child’s relationship with their parents can have a major effect on their life. When Penny’s parents decide to take a break, it has to be hard on her. People can read this story and learn how other people are dealing with the same problems ...more
Feb 15, 2011 Erin rated it did not like it
Shelves: 2011, ya
Mean Girls came out in 2004. This book is copyright 2009. It is practically identical, and isn't even half as awesome.
May 18, 2015 Jennie rated it it was ok
This story is stereotypical. It basically describes the hardships that every teenager fears. In fact, there are thousands - no millions of books that have the exact same plot as this. The only thing that makes this book different doesn't exist. It doesn't stand out and the only reason why I chose to read this book is because I thought the cover was cute. The plot itself isn't boring, but when there's so many books that have the exact same storyline, it just gets old. I don't recommend reading th ...more
Paula  Phillips
May 04, 2012 Paula Phillips rated it really liked it
It makes me think that there are a few authors out there obsessed with the Beatles as The Cupcake Queen is the second book I have read that the main female character's name is "Penny Lane", the first was The Lonely Hearts Club by Elizabeth Eulberg.
In The Cupcake Queen , we meet Penny Lane who has moved to the small town of Hog's Hollow from the big city of Manhattan . In Hog's Hollow , Penny's mum opens up a bakery selling only Cupcakes , the bakery named "The Cupcake Queen". Penny wishing she
Michelle Rebar
Dec 07, 2009 Michelle Rebar rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Fans of Meg Cabot
This is a sweet and satisfying book with heart and substance. The cover is cute, and quite honestly makes me hungry, but I ended up devouring the book itself...and it was delicious!

Penny Lane (yes, she's named after a Beatles song) has lived in new York City for all her life. When her parents hit a rough patch in their relationship she is forced to move to the small town of Hog's Hollow with her mother, leaving her old life and friends behind. Hog's Hollow is just about as normal as it's name. I
Jul 09, 2010 Judine rated it it was amazing
Shelves: young-adult
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jun 05, 2011 Truly rated it it was amazing
This book was wonderful. Basically, it was about a girl named Penny. She moved in the summer from Manhattan, New York to a small town called Hog's Hollow because her parents were separating for a while (but, not yet divorced). Penny first hated Hog's Hollow. She had no friends and missed the ones back home. To top all of that her mom opened a bakery called The Cupcake Queen (HINT: the title). When she first got there the only thing she liked was that she was staying with her grandmother, who she ...more
Feb 18, 2010 Audrey rated it liked it
When her parents separate, Penny moves with her mother to the small town in which her mother grew up. Her mother opens a cupcake bakery, and Penny works in the bakery, mostly decorating cupcakes. It SOUNDS like a book that I should have absolutely loved. My parents are divorced, I ADORE small towns (and wish fervently that I lived in one), cupcakes are one of my favorite desserts, and I would LOVE to be able to decorate cupcakes anywhere nearly as awesome as Penny. Oh, and I love the Beatles, an ...more
jo mo
Jan 18, 2010 jo mo rated it liked it
You know these times, when everything is freezing around you, making you freeze and shiver like a leaf as well?
All you want to do is curl up somewhere warm and drink from a mug ... delicious, hot chocolate? This book is that mug with delicious, hot chocolate.

I had a fun time with all the characters and the pranks they played on each other were enjoyable to read too, though I'm glad it wasn't me. Marcus was a little boring, but the other characters (especially Tally & Blake *bigSmirk*) made
Eleanor Boateng
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Crys (The Hodgenator)
After her parents announce a much needed break from one another, Penny's mom moves her to Hog's Hollow. While Penny is new to Hog's Hollow, her mother is no stranger. Penny now finds herself a part of small town life, something she isn't too sure she wants. After all, she is from NYC, the place to live.

As Penny settles into her new surroundings, she realizes small town life might not be so bad. She has a best friend, a love interest, and an enemy. To put icing on the cake, her mother has opened
Nov 02, 2010 Phoebe rated it did not like it
Shelves: young-adult
Everything about this is cliché and uninspiring (apart from the cover, yum...I've been deceived!) Well, two because it's not particularly horrendous when I think about Wake and Twilight. I guess if this is the first book in the strand of, well, say, city girl with parents newly separated now in a small town feeling frustrated, unresponsive and exploited, then yeah, why not. But, this bores me. I read on because I expect cupcakes. Turns out she doesn't even like cupcakes. And for a book that deal ...more
Jul 12, 2015 Emeline rated it it was amazing
honestly, I really liked this book. a lot of people down in the other reviews said that it was horrible, but I looooove Heather's writing and I found this book amazing, just like her others. I want more!!
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What do you think? 1 4 May 08, 2015 06:16PM  
Did you like this? 25 67 Jun 17, 2013 02:12AM  
Cupcake Lovers: March BOTM: The Cupcake Queen 11 18 Mar 19, 2013 10:08PM  
Friends with Books: The Cupcake Queen 6 5 Feb 14, 2013 01:54AM  
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I was born in Kalamazoo, Michigan, which I think is one of the cooler places to be born, because initially people think I’m being funny—like I’m saying I was born on the moon, but then they see I’m actually being serious. It feels like since then I’ve lived nearly everywhere (well, only in the US—which is a bummer because I want to travel so much). In high school, I was in band and honors society ...more
More about Heather Hepler...

Other Books in the Series

The Cupcake Queen (2 books)
  • Frosted Kisses (The Cupcake Queen, #2)

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“At some point you just have to let go of what you thought should happen and live in what is happening.” 61 likes
“Sometimes life isn’t what you thought it would be it’s just what it is.” 32 likes
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