cover image Cupcake


Rachel Cohn, . . S&S, $15.99 (248pp) ISBN 978-1-4169-1217-0

Irrepressible Cyd Charisse returns in a third novel that picks up right where Shrimp left off. CC is now 18 and living in New York's Greenwich Village with her half-brother, Danny, thinking about culinary school and reconsidering her "no contact" agreement with Shrimp, who is surfing and writing haiku in New Zealand. Her new life features ups and downs (she breaks her leg and drops out of culinary school, but also makes new friends and lands a job as a barista). When Shrimp arrives on her doorstep just in time for a Christmas surprise, CC must decide if she wants to continue building her own life or make one with the man she loves. This book once again covers a lot of ground, including CC's first fight with Danny, the death of a friend and a trip back to California to see her parents (and to track down Shrimp), but CC's authentic voice keeps the story grounded. Fans will appreciate that this installment features a more mature CC, who considers choices more carefully, even if she complains, "What happened to us! We were once rebels! Proudly insolent teenagers!" Readers may find it hard to believe that the book's unusual characters bond so strongly (such as CC's punk boss, Johnny Mold, and her uptight half-sister LisBETH) and they may well predict the outcome—but they will have fun watching CC's free spirit take on the Big Apple. Ages 13-up. (Feb).