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Meet Me at the Cupcake Café

(At the Cupcake Café #1)

3.86  ·  Rating details ·  14,448 ratings  ·  1,391 reviews
Issy Randall can bake. No, more than that - Issy can create stunning, mouth-wateringly divine cakes. After a childhood spent in her beloved Grampa Joe's bakery she has undoubtedly inherited his talent. So when she's made redundant from her safe but dull City job, Issy decides to seize the moment and open up her own cafe.
Paperback, 456 pages
Published April 14th 2011 by Little, Brown Book Group
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Average rating 3.86  · 
Rating details
 ·  14,448 ratings  ·  1,391 reviews

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Start your review of Meet Me at the Cupcake Café (At the Cupcake Café, #1)
May 16, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: romance, adult, read-2015
What a wonderful story filled with recipes that will tempt your sweet tooth. I was in the mood for a corner cafe story and this fit the bill perfectly. My first experience with Jenny Colgans novels, and I immediately grabbed her other books because she hit the mark with my literary craving.

When Issy Randall is made redundant in her city job, she takes her severance pay and decides to open a Cupcake Café that will display all the wonderful recipes shes inherited from her grandfather. Its not an
Jan 04, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2015-reads
There were so many different POVs in this book that it got annoying really fast - switching for one to another to another to another in the same chapter. The characters felt one-dimensional, at best.
Brooke — brooklynnnnereads
Caution: This book may contain recipes and descriptions that lead to an overconsumption of cupcakes and/or other baked goods.

What a cute and cozy read! I have no idea why but for me this was a book equivalent of a romantic comedy circa the 90's featuring Meg Ryan. It was just a sweet (mind the pun) and warmhearted read that was good for the soul.

For those that like to bake, baking recipes are included at the beginning of nearly every chapter. I cannot personally attest to the difficulty of the
Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews
A baker, a real estate agent, and then back to a baker. Issy Randall had come full circle in her life, but could the circle be completed?

Issy lost her job at the real estate agency and was at a loss as to what she could do for a living. She wanted to do something creative this time around. She decided to open a cupcake shop since she had Grandpas recipes and his inherent baking talent to back her up. Issy started out having a rough time with her new endeavor, but she wasn't giving up just yet.

Mar 19, 2018 rated it liked it
This was a sweet book about a woman discovering her strengths. But, it seemed to take a long time. And she kept falling back into the bad relationship with the ex. I kept wanting to slap her silly and tell her to stop being his doormat. Wait till you see what an ass he was to her. And since this book is written through everyones POV you even get to hear how he justifies his crappy actions.
Anyway, great recipes. 🤷♀
Mike Finn
Mar 27, 2012 rated it liked it
This books is an excellent cupcake: light, full of flavour and with just the right amount of sweetness to make you smile.

This was my first Jenny Colgan book. My wife bought it for me because Id said that it was good to see a novel that set out simply to bring its readers some happiness. The book kept its promise.
There was enough plot to keep me turning the pages, enough character definition to want the heroine to win through and choose the right guy in the end and enough contemporary British
Miranda Reads
Sep 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: audiobook
Shout out to this absolutely fabulous book in my latest booktube video is up - all about the best books I read each month and 2019's bookish stats (and yes, I really did read 365 books in 365 days!).

Now that you know this one made the cut - check out the video to see what other ones made my top 12 list!

The written review:

4.5 stars

I have a head for business and a body for sin. Unfortunately, the sin appears to be gluttony.
Issy Randall is a baker at heart - nothing gives her more joy than
Jan 18, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: romance
I'm categorizing this under romance, not chick lit. There was nothing "chick lit" about it. Predictable, but fun. However, disappointing in a few places.

* Very slow start, I almost gave up on it
* Heroine leaves a lot to be desired. I mean really, ex boyfriend says "jump" and she says how high.
* Abrupt ending, with an unexpected twist done solely to alert you that there are more books coming.

I don't think this is the best this author has.
Lisa Wolf
When I need a light and fluffy book, sweet as a fresh-baked cupcake, I know Jenny Colgan is my go-to book goddess. Her books tend to combine yummy, tempting treats, plucky heroines, family touches, and a good, lovely romance. Yes, it can feel a bit formulaic if you read enough of her books -- but that doesn't take away from the joy of indulging (much like the joy of scarfing down one of Issy's amazing confections).

Issy is a little bit clueless when it comes to love, involved in an office romance
Thank you to the publisher and netgalley for my e-copy! This is the second book I've read of Jenny Colgan! I did enjoy this one, but it was a bit slower. Took me awhile to get into the story, but it was such a comforting, light read! I think this book would be a good summer book and good book for a change of pace from thrillers. I loved how it has the recipes too! They sound great and I definitely want to try them out!
Rebecca Reviews
Aug 04, 2019 rated it liked it
Jenny Colgans Meet Me at the Cupcake Café is a predictable but fluffy and delicious read. This feel-good book has a lovely protagonist and memorable side characters. However, the plot is too busy, the constantly switching perspectives is distracting and I wish the characters were more consistent.

Issy Randall is an excellent baker who has learnt everything about baking from a childhood spent in her beloved Grampa Joes bakery. When shes laid off from her boring desk job at a real estate office
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
You probably know this story. A young woman loses her job and decides to try what she does best and open a cupcake cafe. You know there will be a Bad Boy and an almost unseen Love Interest. You know this poor woman is going to struggle to run the cafe. But you know that Good will triumph and that this woman is going to find Love and Happiness at her cafe and thats why you will read it this summer and love it, despite its predictability. You will, I assure you. You will love it.
Feb 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: chicklits
This is really one of the nicest books I've ever read! It was such a warm, funny, well-written story I really couldn't put it down. I came by it in a bookstore in Ireland, and somehow the cover persuaded me to buy it, although I don't like the color pink.

The story might be a bit unrealistic, for everything that happens to Issy, the main character, happens like perfect coincidence, but all too luckily timed. It doesn't decrease the story, though. It might actually make it better. Everytime
May 28, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
Please note that I received this new edition via NetGalley. This did not affect my rating or review.

So this is my second time reading this and I really enjoyed it again. The first time I read this was way back in 2016. I was able to race through some parts though just because I already knew how this was going to end. I still liked Issy though I found her frustrating, I 100 percent enjoyed the other ladies, and I still wasn't that invested in the romance that was included.

Review from 2016:
Rea Cobb
Jun 05, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Meet Me at The Cupcake Cafe is the first book I have read by Jenny Colgan. I have found the last few weeks when I have gone in to Whsmiths to find a new release book which I haven't read I am stuck as there seems to be a bit of down time in the kind of books I like to read. What pulled me to this book was firstly there is a statement about the book from an author I enjoy ( Sophie Kinsella ) secondly the style of the front cover which is pink and cream which is very fitting considering the book ...more
Nida Kazi
Oct 05, 2017 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars. The most disappointing thing was the unexpected change of povs in sentences. For one moment I'm in Issy,'s head and the next without any distinction I am in someone's else. I had to read almost twice. Also what century this book was written can be very questionable. Also Issy doesn't act like a 31 year old. Somethings were beyond my understanding. Also I cant believe she was actually thinking of getting together with that jerk shithead even after what he did!

( Issy can be really
Pankhuri Paliwal
Jan 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: chick-lit
I love the feels of this book with lots of cupcakes bakery and coffee. This centres around life of Issy and also slightly on pearl ,Helena and Caroline with Austin and Graeme being her love interest. Graeme was so horrible he just used and dropped her from his life while Austin was really sweet. Allover it is a good chicklit novel
Jan 28, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Wendy by: Mom
Shelves: fiction, moms-books
This was an excellent book. I didn't feel like I knew what was going to happen ahead of time, either with Issy's business or her love life, and I was actually worried about it. I really wanted Issy to succeed and be happy. It isn't often that chick lit makes me feel that way--usually I dislike the main female character and only grudgingly want things to turn out well for her, often because everyone else is just as unlikeable or worse. This book actually did a lovely job of making characters who ...more
Meet Me at the Cupcake Café is a standalone novel written by author Jenny Colgan. I read this as part of a goodreads group reading challenge to "catch up" on past book of the month's. I expected to love this book- I mean what's not to love about cupcakes and chick lit? While I did like this book overall, it was more of an "ok" for me. I started out really enjoying the drama of the main character Issy sleeping with her boss, getting laid off, then feeling empowered by her ex-coworkers to open her ...more
I read this in a day and a half, so obviously it had something going for it. Good dialog, appealing if cliched trope of arrogant boyfriend taught a lesson, and I enjoyed the setting-up-a-business plot. This had a lot of similarities to the other book by this author that I've read, Welcome to Rosie Hopkin's Sweetshop of Dreams--perhaps too many. The plot was definitely wish-fulfillment, and pretty unrealistic, but it's escapist literature after all. A couple of things bugged me in particular--the ...more
Apr 23, 2016 rated it really liked it
Cute and sweet.... Like a cupcake.
Apr 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
'Meet Me at the Cupcake Cafe' is about Issy, who, one day, loses her boring office job. After trying unsuccessfully to get a new one, she takes all the money her old company has given her and opens a little café on a street far off the beaten track. Because if there's one thing Issy's really good at, it's baking.
Of course, becoming an successful entrepreneur isn't as easy for Issy as she would've liked, but her dear friends, a very nice bank adviser and her grandpa, who supplies her with his
Sonia Cristina
Feb 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2020
MEET ME AT THE CUPCAKE CAFÉ was the first book I finished in February and I consider it a good start to a new month.

This book started slow and it was just near the middle that it picked up speed, but from that point forward, I quite enjoyed it. Issy was a lovely character and it was enjoyable reading about her struggle to open a café and make it successful. I loved the ambience of the Cupcake Café in the court presided by a pear tree and the other characters and situations of the daily life at
Killien Huynh
May 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is the first time I read a romance or chick lit book, I just randomly found it at my sister's house and try something new to killing time. It turns out to be a good reading time. I love all the lovely cake receipts written by grandpa Joe. I think everyone would love to have a sweet and great grandpa like Joe. Other characters are also interesting and lovely, you can't really hate anyone, except Issy. I don't really understand her, however I know there is a type of woman who act and think ...more
Apr 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This was a cute chick-lit book. I loved how Izzy was so down to earth and felt like your best friend. And the problems she faced throughout are normal girl issues that we all face at some point. But I love how she went from a shy girl to a strong businesswoman. This was just such a cute story! I wanna visit the Cupcake Cafe!!

#SassyBookworm😏 #Chicklit #RomCom
Alayne Emmett
May 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book. This was my second read of this book but I still enjoyed it. I have read all of Jenny Colgan books and they are all excellent. This book was supplied by net galley in return for an honest review.
Apr 11, 2019 rated it liked it
Meet Me at the Cupcake Cafe is a sweet story filled with delightful and likable characters. As an added bonus you get lots of recipes to satisfy your sweet tooth. It is a perfect book for chick lit fans. My only complaint was the length of the book. It didn't keep my interest up due to its 400 plus pages.
Thank you to NetGalley and Landmark books for sending me a digital copy in exchange for an honest review.
SOS Aloha
Jul 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Let's face it, a nice creamy chocolate cake does a lot for a lot of people; it does for me. Audrey Hepburn

Issy Randall grew up in her grandfathers bakery in Manchester, England. She learned how to knead bread, whip meringue, and frost cakes. Issy also watched her grandfather take care of his community, in good times and bad. In turn, the community turned Grandpas bakery into a success. The roles reverse when Issy is now working in London and Grandpa is relocated to a nearby care facility as his
Suad Shamma
Nov 23, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, 2012
So to keep it short, I thought this was a very well-written book with a sweet plot, amicable characters and a happy ending.

Issy is a very "nice" character, and like all "nice" people, that tends to get annoying sometimes. Her relationship with Graeme, and her obsession with him and stupidity at continuously taking him back to be treated like a doormat was the "annoying" part.

Otherwise, I think what I liked most about this book was how much I felt I related to it. Everyone (at least all those I
Book of Secrets°ღ
MEET ME AT THE CUPCAKE CAFE was a fun book to read. The main character, Issy, was delightful and quirky, and I was rooting for her every step of the way. After getting laid off from her clerical job at a real estate office, she decides to follow her dream of running her own bakery, just like her beloved grandpa did while she was growing up. This is a huge life change for Issy, and the road to success is rocky with many hard lessons to learn along the way.

Issy was an endearing and kindhearted
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Jenny Colgan is the author of numerous bestselling novels, including 'The Little Shop of Happy Ever After' and 'Summer at the Little Beach Street Bakery', which are also published by Sphere.' Meet Me at the Cupcake Café' won the 2012 Melissa Nathan Award for Comedy Romance and was a Sunday Times Top Ten bestseller, as was 'Welcome to Rosie Hopkins' Sweetshop of Dreams', which won the RNA Romantic ...more

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At the Cupcake Café (2 books)
  • Christmas at the Cupcake Café (At the Cupcake Café, #2)

News & Interviews

Regular readers of romance know that the genre is currently chock-full of fresh plotlines and heroines who save themselves (and sometimes the he...
147 likes · 62 comments
“I have a head for business and a body for sin. Unfortunately, the sin appears to be gluttony.” 78 likes
“Life was always easier, reflected Issy, when you were carrying a large Tupperware full of cakes. Everyone was happy to see you then.” 26 likes
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