By E.R. Murray
Age range: 12+
Liv Bloom’s life is even more complicated than that of your average fourteen-year-old: her father walked out on the family when she was young, her mother is in a recovery centre for alcoholics, and her older sister is struggling to step into Mum’s shoes. The only person she can turn to is her best friend Sarah, who gets out of scrapes at school and is a constant source of advice and companionship. One day Liv discovers a book of recipes written in her mum’s handwriting, which sets her off on a journey towards self-discovery and reconciliation – but a theft, a love rivalry and a school bully are just some of the many obstacles on the way.
Structured around real cake recipes, Caramel Hearts is a coming-of-age novel about love, disappointment and hope, and discovering the true value of friends and family, no matter how dysfunctional they are.
By the end you come to realise the true value of a good friendship and of course no matter how dysfunctional your family and life can seem, everything can indeed seem brighter with a bit of cake!
Mama Mummy Mum
I think anyone who has dealt with addiction, or knows someone dealing with addiction will benefit from the story being told in this novel.
Wee Bit Wordy
Caramel Hearts is a very readable story full of twist and turns that make the reader think of the choices we might have to make in life, with a clear message about the value of family and friends
The School Librarian
It’s a compelling tale of mothers and daughters, sibling love and finding your place in the world. Caramel Hearts has love and passion stitched into every page
Once I picked it up, it was very hard to put down again, and I flew through it in a matter of days! I’m so glad that I got to read Liv’s story and although it broke my heart a little at times, it left me with a smile on my face.
Queen of Teen Fiction
Structured around the recipes, this is a YA novel that is warm and revealing. I highly recommend it to all, as there is something here for everyone. A marvellous and important read.
Fallen Star Stories
A charming celebration of friendship and family ties (and the recipes are real!)
Elizabeth Rose Murray lives in rural Ireland where she fishes and grows her own vegetables. Her short fiction has been published in journals across the UK and Ireland and has been shortlisted in several competitions including the Irish Book Awards, Francis McManus Short Story and Aesthetica Creative Writing Award. Caramel Hearts is her first novel for young adults.
Read an interview with E.R. Murray here