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Friendship Cake (Hope Springs Series #1)
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Friendship Cake (Hope Springs #1)

3.35 of 5 stars 3.35  ·  rating details  ·  752 ratings  ·  92 reviews

When five women from the Hope Springs Community Church in North Carolina form a committee to create a church cookbook, they embark on a project much more meaningful than they could have ever imagined. As novice pastor Charlotte Stewart, no-nonsense Margaret Peele, maverick Louise Fisher, steadfast Jessie Jenkins, and busybody Beatrice Newgarden meet to share recipes, they

Paperback, 256 pages
Published May 28th 2002 by HarperCollins Publishers (first published 2000)
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Lisa (Harmonybites)
Jun 22, 2011 Lisa (Harmonybites) rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Those Looking for a Sweet, Light Feelgood Story of Friendship Among Women
Recommended to Lisa (Harmonybites) by: The Complete Idiot's Guide to the Ultimate Reading List
OK, I feel like a sap for loving this so much, but I confess I did. And goodness, I have to give props for a book so moving it made me cry--more than once.

I give you fair warning. This is friendship cake indeed. Light and sweet enough to carry a label cautioning you about cavities and diabetic shock. A novel about five women: a young pastor of a Christian church in North Carolina and four of her elderly parishioners in a graying congregation. We get to know each in turn in the five introductory
I received this book from a wonderful friend for Christmas, and read it today - the perfect "I'm sick and feel yukky so need a brain candy" book!
Seeming like a Mitford book with an apparent light theme, the book actually went into some heavier areas. It touched on the themes of homosexuality, alzheimers, interracial marriages and of course, friendship and all that it entails and means. A group of older women begin their relationship acrimoneously, yet through an autumn filled with major events
I viewed this book before I read it as a pleasant, light read for the summer. Was I ever wrong! It is an amazing book. I highly recommend all women to read it. It reads easy and fast, but it is an intense story about women's friendships in a small town. Twice I found myself in tears over this book. And then there was laughter as well. I loved it. Lynne Hinton, was able to do so much in such a small book. Can't wait to read the rest in the series. READ IT!
eh! I survived it. I was awake at the end. I was suppose to fall in love with the characters I do not know why I didn't. This si a series of books I think there is at least four, me being me read the second one thinking it was me but hey you like what you like.
Many narrating characters

A poignant story of a handful of women who meet regularly to discuss a cookbook they're putting together, gathering recipes from the church members, young and old alike.

We meet Louise who has never been married and is taking care of a long-time friend with Alzheimer's. Louise is not afraid to speak her mind, upsetting people along the way.

Margaret is widowed. She and her late husband Luther never had children. The young women in the community go to her for advice.

I thought this would be just a quick "cozy" read actually touched on topics I wouldn't have expected: homosexuality, divorce, Alzheimers, alcoholism, teen pregnancy, racism...

What was especially nice was that there was no "7th Heaven-esque" resolution at the end where everyone agreed and believed the same things. Instead, like most friends, they agreed to disagree and to support and love each other.

The change in viewpoint from 1st person of the main characters for the first introductory chapters
My Review:
HarperCollins|March 21, 2002|Trade Paperback|ISBN: 978-0-06-251731-9
When five women from the Hope Springs Community Church in North Carolina form a committee to create a church cookbook, they embark on a project much more meaningful than they could have ever imagined. As novice pastor Charlotte Stewart, no-nonsense Margaret Peele, maverick Louise Fisher, steadfast Jessie Jenkins, and busybody Beatrice Newgarden meet to share recipes, they begin to open their lives and hearts as well.
Rachel Whitley
A heartwarming and poignant story about five very different women who form a lasting bond of friendship as they work together to create a cookbook. The story will make you laugh, and cry, and most of all, appreciate your friends. There are several delicious Southern recipes included, but this book gets five stars for the "real friendship cake" recipe!
Cathy Serpico
I was surprised at how much I ended up enjoying this book, thinking that the spiritual themes would be a turn-off. If anything they were more meditative than religious, and this turned out to be a sweet easy read about the women of Hope Springs and the unlikely friendship that blooms among strong personalities.
May 06, 2011 Dawn rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who enjoys books about women friendships.
Recommended to Dawn by: Caught my eye in the bookstore.
I remember really enjoying this book and liking the characters. This was the first book in a series and it was my favorite of them.
Very sweet, kinda funny and a little bit sad. A lovely, easy-going read. Liked it enough to read the rest of the trilogy.
So far I think that this is a cute book.
I actually thought that this was an Amazing book. I can not wait to read the next one!!
Good story on friendship by more "new age" and "tolerant" than I agree with for a group of "church" women.
I set out to read The Friendship Cake after learning that The Christmas Cake, a book I won and read earlier in the month, was actually book four in the Hope Springs series. I wanted to know what started these women on their journey together as friends.

The Friendship Cake was another easy read, yet also lightly touched with tougher topics like homosexuality, Alzheimer's, teenage pregnancy, the death of a child, race issues, and marital problems. Lynne Hinton's writing itself is average, but she
Hope Springs Community Church Women's Guild needs a project to boost its declining membership. It is decided to compile a Church cookbook and a committee of five women (including the young, female minister) are selected. From here, the story relates not only the problems in getting the recipes but also the relationships between these women and their families. All the emotional range is present from a faith-questioning moment to death of a loved one, reuniting of an estranged daughter and mother, ...more
Lynne Hinton's "Friendship Cake" is inoffensive, and sappy. There's nothing wrong with that, for sure. It was a little too soap opera-ish for me - there were non stop tragedies and crying scenes that seems excessive, when I look back at it. Could this be a Southern gothic thing that I am not getting? Even though there is an undercurrent of a religious theme, it explores a (tame) same sex relationship, which I kind of appreciated. I didn't dislike the book, but I wasn't jumping and up and down wh ...more
Initially, I thought this book may be a little confusing, since 5+ main characters is a little too many to remember. I was pleasently suprised that each character was distinct and the author did a good job to help the reader remember some of the less important characters. This book is a good one if you want a quick book to read, or don't feel good and want to curl up on the couch. It is probably not a book you will remember reading in a couple years, but not every book needs to be that way. It i ...more
Dundee Library
Readers who enjoy the gentleness of Sparks' stories, the small towns with closely knit families and friends involved in day-to-day dramas over the heart-tugging plots might enjoy Friendship Cake, the first in a trilogy, by Lynne Hinton. In Hope Springs, North Carolina, five women come together to publish a church cookbook. While collecting recipes they will become better friends as they learn each other's fears and weaknesses and help each other through them. Full of folksy spirituality and funn ...more
Women working on a church cookbook. Great story of grace, getting along, working together.
Sue Maryon
it was a great story of how friends stick together. l laughed and cried. Great beach read.
Lee Yahnker
Quick easy read. Sometimes it is nice to read a book that just has a simple story to tell
Almost too fluffy and too easy to read.
it was okay. a little hokey in some parts, but I can see how people like it. a group of church women aim to put together a new cookbook and along with each recipe come the stories of the community women. The author is a pastor, so there are "insider" parts that may ring true with church-goers.
A story in a style similar to Angry Housewives Eating BonBons but with a group of older women. Strong religious theme throughout, but not preachy. Dealt with so many hot/emotional topics piled one right after another that it really doesn't give the reader a chance to experience any kind of thought-provoking moments, or at least very few. I do think the main characters were pretty well developed as individuals, although a few were a bit stereotypical. Overall a quick, feel-good type read.
Michele J
It was just ok. I wasn't too impressed with the recipes.
Deb Hale
Oct 02, 2007 Deb Hale rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: liberal fans of the Mitford books
I read this looking for another Mitford - type book and for the food aspects. Overall, I enjoyed it, but I was disappointed. The book is a more liberal religion-oriented book than the Mitford series, which I dearly love. It's been a while, but I believe there were some pretty good recipes in Hinton's easy-to-read book. Somehow, her characters just didn't draw me in as Jan Karon's Mitford cast did over the years. Still, I do not regret having read this book.
Lucky me, I wanted to read "Forever Friends" but it is part of a series. As I looked through the series online one of the titles looked familiar to me (this one) and I found it on my bookshelf - wonderful! So I will start this book tonight.

What a sweet book - I really like reading about local places. I always get giddy when I hear of places in a book where I have actually lived or visited. The story and recipes were nice.
Five ladies form a committee to put together a church cookbook. As they gather recipes they share their lives and form a true and lasting friendship with each other.
Charlotte-young pastor
Margaret - town confidante
Louise-tell it like it is: Roxie-Alzheimers (Louise has loved her for 40 years)
Jessie-only African American family in the church
Beatrice-busybody; turned out to be the glue
I picked this up originally because I thought it was a different book, but it have had a similar title. It was a pleasant read for a day. I will most likely pick up the others in the series since I did relate to the women in the story as they share their recipes to put into a church cookbook. I may try one or two of the recipes myself since they seem simple enough.
Oct 02, 2011 Gloria rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone who needs a "lift"
This book was just a true "gem". One of those feel-good books giving you a smile here and there and definitely a tear once in a while. The characters are so true-to-life, but manage to keep their friendship going in the midst of doing a "cookbook" for a church fundraiser. It was such an easy read, but really gave you pause for thought.
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Lynne Hinton is the pastor of St. Paul's United Church of Christ in Rio Rancho, New Mexico. The author of numerous novels including Friendship Cake, Hope Springs, Forever Friends, Christmas Cake, and Wedding Cake, she lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
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