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No Whisk No Reward

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How do you know if a risk is worth taking? If you knew, there wouldn’t be any risk. Following a disastrous appearance on a televised baking show, Sophie Copeland is certain things can’t get any worse. Several calamities later, Sophie finds herself in Green Valley, Tennessee with no plan, no place to stay, and no prospects. But at least she has a temporary seasonal How do you know if a risk is worth taking? If you knew, there wouldn’t be any risk. Following a disastrous appearance on a televised baking show, Sophie Copeland is certain things can’t get any worse. Several calamities later, Sophie finds herself in Green Valley, Tennessee with no plan, no place to stay, and no prospects. But at least she has a temporary seasonal arrangement with the famed Donner Bakery. And that's something, right? It's not permanent, and it's not a home, but it's still something. Enter Joel Barnes, a Green Valley mystery, wrapped in rumors, and a whispered connection to the local notorious biker gang. Joel’s got a name for being bad news, but he also has an apartment for rent. Intrigued by the dichotomy of Joel’s reputation and sexy southern pull, Sophie can’t help but be tempted, even though she knows—given her (bad) luck—she should stay far, far away. . . Yet as everyone knows, without risk, there’s no reward. 'No Whisk, No Reward' is a full-length contemporary romantic comedy, can be read as a standalone, and is book #3 in the Donner Bakery series, Green Valley World, Penny Reid Book Universe.


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How do you know if a risk is worth taking? If you knew, there wouldn’t be any risk. Following a disastrous appearance on a televised baking show, Sophie Copeland is certain things can’t get any worse. Several calamities later, Sophie finds herself in Green Valley, Tennessee with no plan, no place to stay, and no prospects. But at least she has a temporary seasonal How do you know if a risk is worth taking? If you knew, there wouldn’t be any risk. Following a disastrous appearance on a televised baking show, Sophie Copeland is certain things can’t get any worse. Several calamities later, Sophie finds herself in Green Valley, Tennessee with no plan, no place to stay, and no prospects. But at least she has a temporary seasonal arrangement with the famed Donner Bakery. And that's something, right? It's not permanent, and it's not a home, but it's still something. Enter Joel Barnes, a Green Valley mystery, wrapped in rumors, and a whispered connection to the local notorious biker gang. Joel’s got a name for being bad news, but he also has an apartment for rent. Intrigued by the dichotomy of Joel’s reputation and sexy southern pull, Sophie can’t help but be tempted, even though she knows—given her (bad) luck—she should stay far, far away. . . Yet as everyone knows, without risk, there’s no reward. 'No Whisk, No Reward' is a full-length contemporary romantic comedy, can be read as a standalone, and is book #3 in the Donner Bakery series, Green Valley World, Penny Reid Book Universe.

30 review for No Whisk No Reward

  1. 5 out of 5

    lazybookconqueror

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. This book warms your heart like a cup of steaming hot chocolate. Sophie Copeland is moving from Seattle to Boston. She used to work in a very prestigious restaurant called Paradigm as a pastry chef but after a disastrous appearance on a reality TV Show called 'No Whisk No Reward' (where her nerves got the best of her) people started doubting her skills until she reached a boiling point. Now, she is looking to join her friend Anna who is remodeling her Boston bakery. Sophie decides that she will This book warms your heart like a cup of steaming hot chocolate. Sophie Copeland is moving from Seattle to Boston. She used to work in a very prestigious restaurant called Paradigm as a pastry chef but after a disastrous appearance on a reality TV Show called 'No Whisk No Reward' (where her nerves got the best of her) people started doubting her skills until she reached a boiling point. Now, she is looking to join her friend Anna who is remodeling her Boston bakery. Sophie decides that she will do a cross-country trip visiting some pastry shops along the way before she reaches her final destination. It's in the middle of nowhere Tennessee that she gets lost on the road and almost hits another vehicle. Enter Joel, a strong and silent type with a rugged beard that finds Sophie a place to stay, all while she learns that her car is unfixable and that she needs to take residency in the newfound town of Green Valley and work for the local Donner Bakery until she has the funds to keep moving on. What I found to be the most fascinating thing about 'No Whisk No Reward' was the atmosphere. This is the second book I've read from the Green Valley universe, and I don't know about the rest of the Winston Brothers series, but this one just set the perfect mood of this small town for me. "During the fall, the endless sea of elevated spruce trees wore a frosty, silver tinge but on clear days, they glowed with the breathtaking pinks and oranges of the sunrise and sunset. Hues that made you want to become a recluse and spend your life chasing an endless autumn, floating around from cabin to cabin, snuggled up with a never-ending supply of books and hot chocolate somewhere in the midst of all that incredible foliage." "Yet despite all that, ever since being informed of Green Valley’s insidious underbelly, there was an ever-present hint of something a little darker and more dangerous than just bears and mountain lions despite all that natural wonder and charm." In a way, the setting reminded of something like Twin Peaks (without the paranormal craziness, of course) but like a small dormant town that looks picture-perfect but has its hidden secrets. Both Sophie and Joel are very well-rounded characters. Sophie is tough but anxious, she's sassy and brave but has its limitations. She is so easy to identify with and as human as they come. I adored the fact that she was addicted to True Crime podcasts, it made way to a lot of funny and relatable moments. Joel is a charming dichotomy. The tall strong bearded man that is actually lonely and shy. I just wanted to hug him half the time. Having said that, this story is very slow burn. Romance-wise you will be way over the halfway mark for something to start happening. That might be an issue for some readers but it didn't annoy me. I actually liked how everything was layered and the suspense built up. Even though the main mystery of the story is not really a mystery, (it's something you can guess from the beginning) it's interesting to see how everything pans out, and especially to see Sophie connecting the dots and making sense of this complicated town and its inhabitants. However, a few details bothered me a bit towards the end: (view spoiler)[ 1. We never get to meet Anna and don't really know what happened to her bakery and how she took Sophie's news. 2. Although I didn't mind the slow burn, I would have liked to see more interaction between Joel and Sophie towards the end. We know that he had to deal with a couple of things but there was no real explanation to why he ghosted Sophie for two and a half weeks. But even after, it would have been nice to see them together and happy in Boston just a bit. It was hard saying goodbye to them. (hide spoiler)] 3. Because I only read one book from the Winston Brothers series (and the Baking me Crazy from this Donner Bakery series) I felt left out of a few inside jokes. This is not really a complaint, but I felt that there was a lot of other characters mentioned and it would have been nice to have known more about them. Things that made me really happy: 1. I love to cook and I'm a sucker for all cooking reality shows, so this backdrop was a treat to me. 2. Cletus, Joy, Jennifer, Tempest and the whole cast. The town was populated with incredible characters. 3. Paul Newman. Sophie's obsession with him is delightful and it's such a quirky addition to the plot. Overall this is a delicious book to read. The pacing is soothing and I feel like it's the perfect book to just relax with. Get yourself a blanket, find a cozy spot, brew some tea and have fun. This was an ARC sent to me in exchange for an honest review. No Whisk No Reward will be out on November 12th.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Smartypants Romance

    We are uber excited to announce the lovely Author Ellie Kay's book for Smartypants Romance. 'No Whisk, No Reward' is a full-length contemporary romantic comedy, can be read as a standalone, and is book #3 in the Donner Bakery series (y) RELEASE DATE: November 12, 2019 ** PRE-ORDER LINKS ** Apple Books: https://apple.co/2MMNbcD Nook: https://bit.ly/2ZvUvN1 Google Play: https://bit.ly/2MEKHNk Add to your shelf on Goodreads: https://bit.ly/2YGfZKa (HEADS UP: This book will have no Amazon pre-order!) ** We are uber excited to announce the lovely Author Ellie Kay's book for Smartypants Romance. 'No Whisk, No Reward' is a full-length contemporary romantic comedy, can be read as a standalone, and is book #3 in the Donner Bakery series (y) RELEASE DATE: November 12, 2019 ** PRE-ORDER LINKS ** Apple Books: https://apple.co/2MMNbcD Nook: https://bit.ly/2ZvUvN1 Google Play: https://bit.ly/2MEKHNk Add to your shelf on Goodreads: https://bit.ly/2YGfZKa (HEADS UP: This book will have no Amazon pre-order!) ** Blurb ** How do you know if a risk is worth taking? If you knew, there wouldn’t be any risk. Following a disastrous appearance on a televised baking show, Sophie Copeland is certain things can’t get any worse. Several calamities later, Sophie finds herself in Green Valley, Tennessee with no plan, no place to stay, and no prospects. But at least she has a temporary seasonal arrangement with the famed Donner Bakery. And that's something, right? It's not permanent, and it's not a home, but it's still something. Enter Joel Barnes, a Green Valley mystery, wrapped in rumors, and a whispered connection to the local notorious biker gang. Joel’s got a name for being bad news, but he also has an apartment for rent. Intrigued by the dichotomy of Joel’s reputation and sexy southern pull, Sophie can’t help but be tempted, even though she knows—given her (bad) luck—she should stay far, far away. . . Yet as everyone knows, without risk, there’s no reward. 'No Whisk, No Reward' is a full-length contemporary romantic comedy, can be read as a standalone, and is book #3 in the Donner Bakery series, Green Valley World, Penny Reid Book Universe. --------------------------- BLOGGERS!! ARC Sign up for all books in the Pennyverse is here: https://forms.gle/VmCqUPeRGE82V3hi7

  3. 5 out of 5

    maggieandteddy

    Another great Smartypants book- a spin off from the Penny Reid Winston Brothers series. This is my 3rd Donner Bakery series book. I enjoyed this so much. I loved both of the main characters: Sophie and Joel. Sophie is new to Green Valley. I have to say that I don't remember Joel. He and the Winston Bros have had some issues over the years-especially with Cletus. I love how Sophie's story begins. She's a pastry chef that's lost her mojo. She lost her nerve on national television. She's on her way Another great Smartypants book- a spin off from the Penny Reid Winston Brothers series. This is my 3rd Donner Bakery series book. I enjoyed this so much. I loved both of the main characters: Sophie and Joel. Sophie is new to Green Valley. I have to say that I don't remember Joel. He and the Winston Bros have had some issues over the years-especially with Cletus. I love how Sophie's story begins. She's a pastry chef that's lost her mojo. She lost her nerve on national television. She's on her way to start over in Boston and has some car issues . I won't spoil it, but she has a "meet-cute" with Joel. This is 1st person Sophie's POV. I loved her inner monologues -especially when she was speaking to Paul Newman- or "Mr Newman" on occasion. Paul is my favorite actor of all time, so I loved his influence ("you can do it, kid!") I loved being back in Green Valley. Joy and Tempest are great supporting characters. There are other great cameos that play key roles in Sophie and Joel's story. This is a great slow burn. Joel and Sophie have been so misunderstood. They are perfect for each other. I love how they grow closer. Their own personal growth is wonderful to see. I loved another Green Valley story. I haven't been sad about the end of the Winston Brothers series, since they're always where I can find them. Great debut from Ellie Kay I hope to read her next book.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Wendy'sThoughts

    Sophie Copeland has decided if... She had her Horoscope done... It would probably show 7 Years of Bad Luck... That had to be the answer... Because just when she thought... Her Horrific Appearance on a TV Baking Show... Was as Bad as It Could Get... It got Worse and More Embarrassing... The Good News is she landed in... Green Valley, Tennessee... Here she will be a Temporary Seasonal Helper... At the Infamous Donner Bakery... This could be Good... And then Joel Barnes has an apartment for rent... What could Sophie Copeland has decided if... She had her Horoscope done... It would probably show 7 Years of Bad Luck... That had to be the answer... Because just when she thought... Her Horrific Appearance on a TV Baking Show... Was as Bad as It Could Get... It got Worse and More Embarrassing... The Good News is she landed in... Green Valley, Tennessee... Here she will be a Temporary Seasonal Helper... At the Infamous Donner Bakery... This could be Good... And then Joel Barnes has an apartment for rent... What could be wrong with that... Well, He is a Green Valley Mystery... Rumors and Whispered Connections lead... To the Local Notorious Biker Gang... What to Do, What to Do... Joel has this sexy Southern Pull... But He also could be a Dangerous Choice... Sophie has to Make a Decision and ... Decides to throw Caution to the Wind... Because as She Feels... No Whisk No Reward (Donner Bakery, #3)-November 12th 2019 Baking Me Crazy (Donner Bakery #1) https://www.goodreads.com/review/show... Stud Muffin (Donner Bakery #2) https://www.goodreads.com/review/show... No Whisk No Reward(Donner Bakery #3) https://www.goodreads.com/review/show... For more Reviews, Free E-books and Giveaways

  5. 5 out of 5

    Curlyhairlass19

    4.25 amazing stars!! First of all, I love Ellie Kay’s writing, and just her unique flair that made this book so fun! It felt good being surrounded by the Green Valley gang again. Cletus, Jenn, Beau and a few others I’ll zip my lips on. You have to read for yourself to see the intense twists and turns Ellie Kay has put in this book. I love the two main characters flow and chemistry with each other. Just an overall good book! Loving these SPR books!!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Caitlin Reads

    I loved this book! The third installment in the Donner Bakery series will not disappoint fans. I was really surprised to read that this is Ellie Kay’s debut novel. Sophie Copeland is driving through Green Valley on her way to Boston to work as a pastry chef at her best friends new bakery, Yeast Affection (love the name). She gets lost one night and Joel, a brooding auto mechanic, comes to her rescue. She ends up deciding to stay in Green Valley for a short term to save money for a new car and I loved this book! The third installment in the Donner Bakery series will not disappoint fans. I was really surprised to read that this is Ellie Kay’s debut novel. Sophie Copeland is driving through Green Valley on her way to Boston to work as a pastry chef at her best friends new bakery, Yeast Affection (love the name). She gets lost one night and Joel, a brooding auto mechanic, comes to her rescue. She ends up deciding to stay in Green Valley for a short term to save money for a new car and work at the Donner Bakery while renting an apartment from Joel. I really loved Sophie. She is hilarious and has a great heart. She knew not to believe the rumors around town and gave Joel a shot before forming an opinion of him. Joel was grumpy but so sexy and sweet. Sophie brought out the best side of Joel. The chemistry between Sophie and Joel was undeniable and the writing was great. I also really loved the friendship between Sophie, Tempest and Joy! I need to go out drinking with them. My only gripe with this novel is I wish it was told from a dual point of view so I could hear what Joel was thinking but overall this was a great book. I can’t wait to read more from Ellie Kay! As always, Cletus steals every scene he is in. A lot of this book is set at the bakery so this book will definitely leave you hungry for pastries and more novels from Ellie Kay. Thanks to Social Butterfly PR for this ARC in exchange for an honest review!

  7. 5 out of 5

    Lady Heather

    "4- To giving, and getting second chances - Stars!" I enjoyed reading this book. At the beginning of this story, the reader is learning about the protagonist, Sophie Copeland. Sophie is utterly devastated by one of the most embarrassing moments in her life, which just happened to be televised for all her peers to see. That iconic moment affected Sophie in such a deep level, that she lost all her confidence and self-esteem in something that she loved and was her passion. She decided to step away "4- To giving, and getting second chances - Stars!" I enjoyed reading this book. At the beginning of this story, the reader is learning about the protagonist, Sophie Copeland. Sophie is utterly devastated by one of the most embarrassing moments in her life, which just happened to be televised for all her peers to see. That iconic moment affected Sophie in such a deep level, that she lost all her confidence and self-esteem in something that she loved and was her passion. She decided to step away from it all. She quits her job and decides to drive across the country to join her best friend in opening her bakery. One of the most wonderful quirks about Sophie's character is that she has conversations with a picture of Paul Newman that she keeps with her wherever she goes. As luck would have it, Sophie ends up in Green Valley, where she meets Joel Barnes. Sophie and Joel had wonderful chemistry. This was a good story about friendship, stepping out of your comfort zone and taking risks, even if those risks might break your heart. Good read! "I voluntarily read an ARC of this book which was provided by SocialButterFlyPR in exchange for an honest review."

  8. 5 out of 5

    Sheena ☆ Oh, the Sheenanigans!

    Third time's the charm people! I'm not gonna lie, I didn't have much hope for the series after reading the first two installments of the Donner Bakery but this one was a keeper! Everything just flowed nicely, the characters were decent and the chemistry between the leads was smoking hot! Sure there was the whole instant love bit going on but it was easy to overlook and was good enough to eat!

  9. 5 out of 5

    Bibliomedico

    visit my blog , for more reviews , recommendations and interviews : https://bibliomedico.wordpress.com/ ************************** ARC provided by the publisher & Social Butterfly PR , Thanks for giving me the opportunity to read the book. ************************** " Mistakes aren't proof that you aren't good enough , they are just steps toward wherever it is you are trying to get to " Unfortunately , No Whisk No Reward is the first book I didn't like from The smartypants romance visit my blog , for more reviews , recommendations and interviews : https://bibliomedico.wordpress.com/ ************************** ARC provided by the publisher & Social Butterfly PR , Thanks for giving me the opportunity to read the book. ************************** " Mistakes aren't proof that you aren't good enough , they are just steps toward wherever it is you are trying to get to " Unfortunately , No Whisk No Reward is the first book I didn't like from The smartypants romance upcoming and new released books . The story had no development , I couldn't connect with the characters at all , Found them really annoying , even though I love the supporting and side characters and all the Green Valley vibes , I just wasn't interested in Joel and Sophie story , it was weird in not a good way :P Their relation and love was illogical for me , I mean they have just met , there wasn't that much contact between them and suddenly they were in love !!!! I can understand attraction and lust but LOVE !!!!! Anyway , What I really loved here is Sophie's career development , how her friends helped her build her confidence and take a risk for her future . I loved Sophie's dedication and passion . Ellie Kay writing style was enjoyable and really good , but the story …. wasn't for me .

  10. 5 out of 5

    Ashley

    There's so much to unpack in this debut novel from the delightful Ellie Kay – a great deal of story in this one book. (view spoiler)[For fans of the Winston Brothers series by Penny Reid: Have you ever thought about the consequences the Winstons' decisions have had on other Green Valley residents? I hadn't before I read this book. Now I find myself wanting to know more about every Green Valley resident and what's been going on in their lives while I've been getting to know the Winstons and the There's so much to unpack in this debut novel from the delightful Ellie Kay – a great deal of story in this one book. (view spoiler)[For fans of the Winston Brothers series by Penny Reid: Have you ever thought about the consequences the Winstons' decisions have had on other Green Valley residents? I hadn't before I read this book. Now I find myself wanting to know more about every Green Valley resident and what's been going on in their lives while I've been getting to know the Winstons and the Iron Wraiths. (hide spoiler)] I enjoyed Joel and Sophie's story. The flow was a bit slow at first as the characters were developed and the plot built, but when it found its rhythm I found this book had a good mix of story, romance, angst, and comedy. I found myself laughing out loud at times, as one might expect with a quirky heroine, but I also found myself close to tears at times. Joel is so soulful and has such a tragic backstory, it’s impossible not to root for Sophie in her attempts to help him. It's impossible not to root for Sophie in general. This is a very impressive debut by a new author. From her author’s note “Ellie is on a mission to help change the stigma surrounding the Romance genre and hopes to see a day when they are no longer considered ‘guilty pleasures,’ but rather, just pleasures.” I hope we see that day, too. I’m hopeful that with more books like this, and others in the SmartyPants Romance Universe, we will.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Jypsy

    Thank you Social Butterfly and the author for a complimentary copy. I voluntarily reviewed this book. All opinions expressed are my own. No Whisk No Reward Donner Bakery #3 By: Ellie Kay *REVIEW* 'No Whisk, No Reward' is a full-length contemporary romantic comedy, can be read as a standalone, and is book #3 in the Donner Bakery series, Green Valley World, Penny Reid Book Universe. I have read all of the Donner Bakery books, and I have enjoyed every one! In this story, Sophie is moving cross Thank you Social Butterfly and the author for a complimentary copy. I voluntarily reviewed this book. All opinions expressed are my own. No Whisk No Reward Donner Bakery #3 By: Ellie Kay *REVIEW* 🍰🍰🍰🍰 'No Whisk, No Reward' is a full-length contemporary romantic comedy, can be read as a standalone, and is book #3 in the Donner Bakery series, Green Valley World, Penny Reid Book Universe. I have read all of the Donner Bakery books, and I have enjoyed every one! In this story, Sophie is moving cross country to help a friend with her new bakery after a disastrous television appearance when her car dies in Green Valley. Turns out, she will be here for a bit, so Sophie takes a temporary job at the Donner Bakery and rents an apartment. Her neighbor is the rumored bad boy in town, Joel, and Sophie knows she ought to steer clear of him, but.....she is drawn to this rough country boy with the less than stellar reputation. Joel is not as scary as people might think, and he likes his feisty new neighbor. The problem is that, regardless of how this relationship goes, Sophie is leaving soon, but Joel is staying in Green Valley. Something will have to give, but what? This story is delightful and fun. The characters are genuine, and it's like I know them personally. Country boys really are the best, but you have to give them a chance to show you who they are. That's why I like Joel so much. Sophie is a lot of fun, and I love her attitude. Overall, this might be my favorite Donner Bakery book, although I do love them all! I highly recommend for fans of Green Valley and its loveable inhabitants!

  12. 4 out of 5

    Shelby

    Pastry chef, Sophie Copeland, has recently found herself without a job after a terrible performance on the tv show, No Whisk, No Reward. So she’s decided to help her friend open a bakery in Boston, so Sophie packs up her things and travels cross country. But her car breaks down in Green Valley, Tennessee and she learns her old faithful car is toast. So Sophie decides to take a job for a few months at the local Donner Bakery until Anna needs her in Boston after the new year. Sophie needs a place Pastry chef, Sophie Copeland, has recently found herself without a job after a terrible performance on the tv show, No Whisk, No Reward. So she’s decided to help her friend open a bakery in Boston, so Sophie packs up her things and travels cross country. But her car breaks down in Green Valley, Tennessee and she learns her old faithful car is toast. So Sophie decides to take a job for a few months at the local Donner Bakery until Anna needs her in Boston after the new year. Sophie needs a place to stay and it just so happens local Joel Barnes has a studio apartment to rent. Sophie is instantly attracted to this bearded, rugged southern man, even if he is a little rough around the edges. Sophie and Joel become neighbors but their relationship turns into a fun and flirty friendship. But everyone in town warns Sophie against Joel. He’s known as the town’s bad boy and is thought to be caught up with the local biker gang. But no matter what anyone says, Sophie can’t help but fall head over heels for Joel. The only problem? She’s leaving in a couple months time and Joel is tied to Green Valley. If one of them doesn’t give, their relationship wont make it past the holidays. No Whisk, No Reward is Ellie Kay’s debut novel and the third installment in the Donner Bakery series. I loved the beginning of this book. Sophie and Joel have a fun meet cute and due to car troubles, Sophie decides to stick around in Green Valley. Where this book went south for me was the involvement of the biker gang. I felt like there was a lot of darker/suspenseful type of elements, but they weren’t executed well. Since this is Ellie Kay’s debut romance, I understand her writing, storytelling and world building will improve over time. Even if this one didn’t work for me, I’ll give her books a try in the future. 2.5/5 stars. Thank you Social Butterfly PR and Ellie Kay for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

  13. 4 out of 5

    jordane

    *3.5* I really liked the characters in this book, especially Sophie’s. I enjoyed the story, but sometimes it felt too slow for me. And Cletus and Jenn were mentioned so much in this one, i loved it!!!! Also, i’m so curious about Daniella and Catfish, i hope they’ll have their book!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Danielle

    This book is everything! You will laugh and cry (or I did at least) and laugh some more. Sophie is sassy and quirky and just amazing. Joel is so quiet and I felt for him throughout this book. This is another great addition to Penny Reid’s world and I look forward to more books by Ellie Kay!

  15. 5 out of 5

    Jules

    Oh, how delightful. A book that demonstrates: Don't always believe the gossip mill, and give people second chances to meet them in person, making your opinion. When Sophie strands in Green Valley, she takes up Joel, the brooding man she nearly ran over, on his offer of a flat to stay in for the night. But then her stay turns into a much longer one... and she has to engage with her knight in less than shining armour - or so everyone keeps telling her. Sophie and Joel have sparks flying instantly, Oh, how delightful. A book that demonstrates: Don't always believe the gossip mill, and give people second chances to meet them in person, making your opinion. When Sophie strands in Green Valley, she takes up Joel, the brooding man she nearly ran over, on his offer of a flat to stay in for the night. But then her stay turns into a much longer one... and she has to engage with her knight in less than shining armour - or so everyone keeps telling her. Sophie and Joel have sparks flying instantly, and slowly develop into more, as they get to know each other and their pasts - and possible future. The book started off somewhat slow, establishing backstories and characters, but surely found its pace and gelled more and more as it went along. But you could not have told me this was a debut author and made me believe it. The writing is simply absolutely great. And now I cannot wait for Ellie to write about the lovely sidekick, Joy. 4.5 stars

  16. 5 out of 5

    Beth SHULAM

    The third installment of the Donner Bakery series from Smartypants Romance. Well kudos to Ellie Kay on her debut novel. A great premise, Sophie comes to Green Valley while taking a cross country road trip to visit bakeries and to escape her recent debacle on national television. She must stay in town after her car breaks down and she can't fix it. We get to visit with the Winstons and several of the Donner Bakery cast along the way. We also meet Joel, the mysterious man about town, who rents her The third installment of the Donner Bakery series from Smartypants Romance. Well kudos to Ellie Kay on her debut novel. A great premise, Sophie comes to Green Valley while taking a cross country road trip to visit bakeries and to escape her recent debacle on national television. She must stay in town after her car breaks down and she can't fix it. We get to visit with the Winstons and several of the Donner Bakery cast along the way. We also meet Joel, the mysterious man about town, who rents her a place to stay. This was a cute HEA story that was quite lengthy. There was so much happening and the pace was a bit slow for me and I honestly skipped through some of the last third of the story to get to the ending. But the HEA didn't disappoint.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Nicole Emerald Book Reviews McCurdy

    No Whisk, No Reward (book #3 in the Donner Bakery series) by @Ellie Kay (#SmartypantsRomance) 4.5* ‘“You know, I could have gone for the rest of my life convinced that there would never be another person who would look at me the way you’re looking at me right now. I plan on getting my fill so that once you’ve moved on, I’ll have a trove of memories to look back on and know with certainty there is someone out there and she’s perfect. If this is all I can have, then I’ll take it.”’ Author Ellie Kay’s No Whisk, No Reward (book #3 in the Donner Bakery series) by @Ellie Kay (#SmartypantsRomance) 4.5* ⭐⭐⭐⭐🌠 ‘“You know, I could have gone for the rest of my life convinced that there would never be another person who would look at me the way you’re looking at me right now. I plan on getting my fill so that once you’ve moved on, I’ll have a trove of memories to look back on and know with certainty there is someone out there and she’s perfect. If this is all I can have, then I’ll take it.”’ Author Ellie Kay’s writing is like Mary Poppins’ magic carpet bag. You read and you read, getting lost in the chaos, romance and an array of dazzling emotions, and you think there couldn’t possibly be any more surprises or little gifts left to be unveiled in the story, until she pulls out yet another stunning little plot piece and you’re left feeling slightly astounded and amazed. The first half of the book is very much character driven. Establishing our eccentric heroine and surly hero and how they fit into life in Green Valley. The second half, however, is an amalgamation of a brilliant, well thought out and executed plot, multifaceted characters, sentiment, sex, scandal and uncertainty. And it is truly in the second part of the story that everything gathers steam and powers through to a really lovely and memorable happy ending. I did find the flow of the story a little slow in the beginning, as the characters and plot attempted to find their rhythm. However, once they found their niche, the drama, suspense, angst and cast of players really took the story in a remarkably captivating direction. I would have liked to see more of what was going on inside Joel’s head, maybe with a few scenes from his point of view. Because he was such an enigma, uncommunicative, so lost and alone, comforted by his own company and thoughts, trapped in a life he neither wanted nor asked for, I felt like I missed a deeper connection to him. Regardless of that though, Joel is a truly formidable hero. The tall, dark, silent and bearded thing really works for him and it has to be said, I have a massive obsession with, and love for moody heroes, who have painful pasts and huge squishy romantic hearts underneath that wall of churlishness. It was really difficult for me to fathom that “No Whisk, No Reward” is Ellie’s debut novel. She has given her heroine a truly unique and outstanding voice, through hilarious dialogue, offbeat inner musings and a personality that is both sweet and salty, not to mention, her comical yet idiosyncratic belief, that Paul Newman is her own personal spirit guide. Albeit on a lanyard. It was those curious and entertaining little touches that brought forth the true essence of Sophie Copeland’s quirky and charming personality. One, you couldn’t help but admire. But it also highlighted how very talented writer Ellie Kay is. ‘His hips shifted from left to right in an easy swagger some men wield effortlessly yet it was obvious from the tightness of his shoulders that he was still frustrated from our exchange. “Good Lord...you sir, are going straight into the spank bank”...”’ No Whisk, No Reward was peppered with lots of amazing Green Valley residents, with two of my favourite’s playing an integral role in this book. But it was the quick bombs of information that just exploded here and there that left me reeling for what’s to come and I have a feeling it is going to be pretty amazing. If you want an intelligent love story with lots of humour and a side helping of serious drama then this is definitely the book for you. ** Author Spotlight: Meet Author Author Ellie Kay! ** Ellie Kay is an Australian born living in Vancouver, British Columbia Canada who honed her creative writing skills in the colorful, and imaginative world of Corporate Insurance. Socially awkward, she loves to respond to theatre ticket vendors who say, “enjoy the movie” with, “Thanks, you too,”, but she also likes to cook, travel and spend time with her partner and cat Taako. Ellie is on a mission to help change the stigma surrounding the Romance genre and hopes to see a day when they are no longer considered “guilty pleasures,” but rather, just a pleasure. Ellie Kay is the author of No Whisk, No Reward, book #3 in the Donner Bakery series coming November 12th, 2019! Pre-Order your copy today: https://smartypantsromance.com/books/... Find Ellie Online: Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authorelliekay Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/authorellie... Goodreads:https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/8... Twitter: https://twitter.com/authorelliekay

  18. 4 out of 5

    Anne - Books of My Heart

    This review was originally posted on Books of My Heart Review copy was received from Publicity team. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. 3.5 hearts The Donner Bakery series is a favorite in the Smartypants Romance books. I enjoy the food and the peeks at Jenn and Cletus. No Whisk, No Reward is the third book and is available in Kindle Unlimited. We watch the cross-country traveler and pastry chef, Sophie, meet and become friendly with Joel Barnes, who has This review was originally posted on Books of My Heart   Review copy was received from Publicity team. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.   3.5 hearts The Donner Bakery series is a favorite in the Smartypants Romance books. I enjoy the food and the peeks at Jenn and Cletus.  No Whisk, No Reward is the third book and is available in Kindle Unlimited.  We watch the cross-country traveler and pastry chef, Sophie, meet and become friendly with Joel Barnes, who has always lived in Green Valley. Sophie had a bad experience and is going to join her best friend, Anna in opening a new bakery in Boston. Her car breaks down in Green Valley.  She ends up getting a temporary gig at the Donner Bakery.  It was great to see Tempest and Joy, already known to you if you are reading the series. Jenn is the kindest and best person, ever, except maybe Bethany Winston, but I digress. Joel has lost his father and brother.  He came back to town to help his brother even though he preferred his construction work in Nashville.  Now he's in a mess between his auto repair shop and pressure from the biker gang. I didn't find this story very realistic but it did grab me emotionally. There is more leeway in a small town for the parameters of what I found unrealistic, though.  I liked Sophie and thought she was good-hearted and trying her best.  I wasn't as happy with Joel's choices especially when he shut her out.  It was a fun read with an HEA which is a good effort for the author's first book. Excerpt: That’s when I saw Joel sitting alone in a booth by a large window, eating a sandwich, and reading a newspaper. Oh. Hello, conflicted feelings. You’re looking extra conflicting today. Did you do something with your hair? His gorgeous brown hair was a mess and the sleeves of his gray shirt were pushed up revealing his forearms which looked even thicker than I remembered them being, as he worked to fold the gigantic pages of the newspaper into neat manageable folds. This man was seriously hotter than a melting ice-cream analogy. And also, possibly involved with a crime organization! I reminded myself as I continued to stand uselessly trying to find somewhere to sit. I tried not to stare, but it was impossible not to smile at the indelicate way he shoved the corner of his sandwich into his mouth and then proceeded to chew as though it might try to escape. He picked up his coffee and was mid-sip when his eyes rose up from the rim of his cup and saw me standing by the entrance staring at him. Busted. “Take a seat wherever you can find one, hon, I’ll be along shortly to take your order,” a lady with a nameplate that read Janice, instructed me as she hurried by with a tray of coffee and doughnuts. I looked back over at Joel who was watching me and gestured to the empty seat across from his. My mind immediately went to Joy and Tempest’s reaction when they found out he was my landlord, but I quickly reminded myself that he’d done nothing to warrant any rudeness on my part. Despite their apprehension, I figured this was a good opportunity to try and get more insight into whether I thought their response carried any weight. Plus, I really needed coffee. I made my way over, feeling his eyes on me as I crisscrossed around tables while trying to be ever vigilant of any sudden movements from other patrons. My good sense will not be thwarted by your blue-green eyes and frowny brows, you magnificent biker beast. “Good afternoon,” he greeted in a smooth as hot honey drawl. I was glad that I was already halfway into the seat because I felt my knees completely give out. Traitor knees. My armor of detachedness was not as hefty as I’d hoped. “Taking a break from work?” I inquired, proud of my cool, even tone. “Yep, just grabbing something to eat. You?” “I’m done for today,” I replied reaching for a menu and unfolding it as though it were just as informative as his newspaper. “Nice. Got any plans?” “Not really, I was going to check out the bookstore downstairs, but that’s about—” I was interrupted by the feeling of fingers gently stroking my cheek and looked up to find him reaching across the table, his eyes focused on a spot as he gently swiped at something on my face. “Sorry, you got flour or something on your cheek it was driving me crazy,” he said before pulling away and leaning back coolly against his seat. I’m gonna get thwarted, aren’t I?

  19. 5 out of 5

    Kimberly / Love Notes Book Blog

    3 stars. No Whisk, No Reward is the third book in the Donner Bakery series, which is a spin off of the Winston Brothers series by Penny Reid and part of the Smartypants Romance world. This book was kind of a mixed bag for me. This is Sophie and Joel's book. Sophie is a pastry chef. She recently appeared on a TV pastry competition show (think Gordan Ramsey), on which she failed spectacularly and was humiliated. As a result, she was fired from her actual pastry chef job afterwards and has found 3 stars. No Whisk, No Reward is the third book in the Donner Bakery series, which is a spin off of the Winston Brothers series by Penny Reid and part of the Smartypants Romance world. This book was kind of a mixed bag for me. This is Sophie and Joel's book. Sophie is a pastry chef. She recently appeared on a TV pastry competition show (think Gordan Ramsey), on which she failed spectacularly and was humiliated. As a result, she was fired from her actual pastry chef job afterwards and has found herself adrift. So she decides to drive across the country to Boston from Seattle, to where her best friend lives to help her open a bakery. But, fate has other plans. Along her drive, her car breaks down in Green Valley, Tennessee. While stuck for a few days waiting for her car to be fixed, she explores the town and, eventually, decides to take a temporary job at the Donner Bakery for a few months. She also meets Joel, who is a mysterious guy who rents her a room. They become friends and eventually begin a relationship. This is the first book I have read by Ellie Kay and I think it is her first book published. While I applaud her for her bravery and effort, the writing felt a little amateurish and unpolished. Some of the dialogue felt silly and unnecessary. There was not a ton of character depth. Joel had very little personality. Sophie was supposed to be cute and quirky, but I found her clumsiness, awkwardness and odd personality annoying. I didn't really enjoy her fascination with Paul Newman (and the way she "conversed" with him). There was hardly any chemistry between the couple. I think the book is supposed to be slow burn, but I didn't feel any burn. I didn't like the way Joel pushed Sophie away, and without much discussion, they get back together at the very end. Also, there was a lot of page time for Penny Reid's characters, especially Jennifer and Cletus Winston. But I didn't find them to be much like the original characters that Penny wrote. I also found Tempest, a character from the second book in the series, Stud Muffin, to be completely different than her book, as well. As it was, I considered not finishing this book, but I did stick with it and I enjoyed it a bit more by the end. I did like the story in general. I do think this was a pretty good try for a first book, even if I didn't totally love it. I am still enjoying the Smartypants Romance books and look forward to reading more of them in the future. *arc provided in exchange for an honest review*

  20. 4 out of 5

    Rebecca

    No Whisk, No Reward by Ellie Kay is another new-to-me author thanks to the Penny Reid Book Universe. I am loving the new additions to the Green Valley World, and the Donner Bakery series is such an entertaining collection of stories. What I love the most about them are how its heroes and heroines seem opposites in every way, but the more they get to know one another and the further insight readers are provided about who these characters truly are illustrates just how similar they actually are. No Whisk, No Reward by Ellie Kay is another new-to-me author thanks to the Penny Reid Book Universe. I am loving the new additions to the Green Valley World, and the Donner Bakery series is such an entertaining collection of stories. What I love the most about them are how its heroes and heroines seem opposites in every way, but the more they get to know one another and the further insight readers are provided about who these characters truly are illustrates just how similar they actually are. Sophie Copeland is quite the hot mess, and while that shouldn’t be a big deal, since everyone can have those moments, it’s when she’s on national television and falls apart for the world to see that makes her tuck her tail and run. Sophie is definitely a heroine who readers will identify with on a number of levels. She is a bit of a contradiction when it comes to her personality traits, but it’s that complexity of character that intrigued me, especially when she was able to build her confidence back up after the fallout from her stint of television. Joel Barnes is an interesting hero who is nothing like the Green Valley rumors describe. He’s a man of few words, but what he does say matters, and the fact that he finds someone who wants to help him…who accepts him for who he is, not what she’s heard about him. She wants the man who Joel is, not the mystery that wraps around him from gossip and lies. This book is the epitome of a slow burn romance, and while, at times, it felt a bit too slow, I appreciate the time spent building the characters and their environment. I guess I haven’t read many books told through a single perspective, lately, because I missed the story being told through the point of view of both the hero and the heroine; it adds a more complete picture to the story line, and without it in No Whisk, No Reward, I found myself questioning words and actions more so than I would have if I had both main characters’ perspective. 3.5 Poison Apples

  21. 4 out of 5

    Romance Schmomance (Malia)

    Can I just tell you how much I love this series?! And now with the Winston Brothers series all finished, I wasn't quite ready to say farewell to Green Valley. No Whisk No Reward is book 3 in the Donner Bakery series and it has quickly become one of my favorites in the Smartypants Romance world. I liked the fact that Sophie was nomading it a bit as she makes her way to Boston to continue her love as a pastry chef. This was my first time reading a book by Ellie Kay and I.AM.HOOKED. She has such a Can I just tell you how much I love this series?! And now with the Winston Brothers series all finished, I wasn't quite ready to say farewell to Green Valley. No Whisk No Reward is book 3 in the Donner Bakery series and it has quickly become one of my favorites in the Smartypants Romance world. I liked the fact that Sophie was nomading it a bit as she makes her way to Boston to continue her love as a pastry chef. This was my first time reading a book by Ellie Kay and I.AM.HOOKED. She has such a fun and different style to her writing, it was evident how much I loved it because I couldn't put it down. I truly enjoyed reading about Joel and Sophie, their connection was definitely instant, but they take their time with things. Joel is definitely not what you think, there was more to him and I'm glad we get to know him a bit more as the book goes on. I know some don't like it when they call a romance story cute, but that's exactly what this one was. This series has been such sweet and cute reads. No Whisk No Reward is such a great addition to this series and I loved all the cameos we get. Feisty Sophie and Sensitive-Swoony Joel are here! Prepare yourself to fall in love with this book and author!

  22. 5 out of 5

    Shanda

    3.5 stars Sophie Copeland ends up stuck in Green Valley due to a broken-down car. Her plans to help her friend with her bakery are now delayed. Now that she is in Green Valley Sophie decides to take a seasonal job working for Donner Bakery. They are excited to have the help and Sophie gets a little down time before she has to leave. Sophie meets Joel on her way into town and is intrigued. Joel is a mystery. The town whispers about him and the Winston’s don’t like him. Sophie likes Joel and takes 3.5 stars Sophie Copeland ends up stuck in Green Valley due to a broken-down car. Her plans to help her friend with her bakery are now delayed. Now that she is in Green Valley Sophie decides to take a seasonal job working for Donner Bakery. They are excited to have the help and Sophie gets a little down time before she has to leave. Sophie meets Joel on her way into town and is intrigued. Joel is a mystery. The town whispers about him and the Winston’s don’t like him. Sophie likes Joel and takes the time to get to know him. Sophie starts to unravel Joel’s secrets and is determined to help him. Will the town and the Winston’s get on board and help Joel? Will Sophie stay in Green Valley or leave and takes Joel’s heart with her? This was a sweet story. I didn’t care for the mystery surrounding Joel. I think I was getting a little bored with his secrets. It did wrap up nicely and it was fun to get more Cletus Winston. Copy provided in exchange for a voluntary review

  23. 5 out of 5

    Kelly

    No Whisk No Reward was another great addition to the Donner Bakery series. Sophie and Joel are the main characters, with the secondary characters Tempest and Joy also featuring prominently in the storyline. I love Tempest, she is the main character in Stud Muffin (Donner Bakery #2), so I was super happy to see so much of her again. Maybe Joy will get her own story in the next round of Smartypants romance? ANYWAY, back to Sophie. She finds herself having an unexpected stay in Green Valley and also No Whisk No Reward was another great addition to the Donner Bakery series. Sophie and Joel are the main characters, with the secondary characters Tempest and Joy also featuring prominently in the storyline. I love Tempest, she is the main character in Stud Muffin (Donner Bakery #2), so I was super happy to see so much of her again. Maybe Joy will get her own story in the next round of Smartypants romance? ANYWAY, back to Sophie. She finds herself having an unexpected stay in Green Valley and also ends up employed for a short period of time at Donner Baker (YES - this means more Jenn and Cletus, always happy to see more of my guy Cletus). After a rather anxiety ridden first meeting with Joel, Sophie finds herself spending more time with him and enjoying his company. My favourite thing about Sophie was how she just accepts Joel for who he is/the person he shows himself to be during their interactions. She doesn't allow the preconceived notions of others affect how she views him. No Whisk No Reward was an enjoyable way to spend a few hours on a Sunday arvo.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Melena Torretta

    This book started off a bit slow, but the characters and story grew on me the more I read. Sophie lands in Green Valley for longer than planned when her car dies during her road trip. Since she's not due in Boston to help her friend open a bakery for awhile, she stays in town and gets a temp job at Donner Bakery. Nearly everyone she meets warns her away from Joel, a local mechanic who owns his own garage. It's hard to stay away from him, though, when he is her new landlord and maybe friend. If my This book started off a bit slow, but the characters and story grew on me the more I read. Sophie lands in Green Valley for longer than planned when her car dies during her road trip. Since she's not due in Boston to help her friend open a bakery for awhile, she stays in town and gets a temp job at Donner Bakery. Nearly everyone she meets warns her away from Joel, a local mechanic who owns his own garage. It's hard to stay away from him, though, when he is her new landlord and maybe friend. If my memory serves me correctly this is the first of the Smartypantsromance releases to be told from only one POV. I was hoping to get chapters from Joel, but having a single POV works well in this book as Sophie is trying to unravel the mystery of who Joel is and if he's connected to the Iron Wraiths at all. I really enjoyed the progression of their relationship as they spend more time together. Both characters have personal growth over the course of the story that felt natural and unrushed. No Whisk, No Reward is a sweet story and features appearances by some of the Winston Brothers and also newer characters from the Donner Bakery series. I hope we see more from Ellie Kay in the Smartypantsromance universe and I am looking forward to reading her other books. Thank you to the author for providing an ARC for an honest review. . . . Bookstagram Post: https://www.instagram.com/p/B40dIKtA8fo/

  25. 4 out of 5

    Cassandra

    This was very cute but definitely not my favourite of the series. I enjoyed Joel and Sophie a LOT. They were very enjoyable as lead characters... I just felt this lacked whatever it was that the others had. I think it might have moved a little too fast? Perhaps slowing down and letting the characters talk and get to know each other on the page instead of in-between unwritten time jumps would have benefit the story moreso than jumping weeks at a time? I'm not sure. Either way, not mad about this This was very cute but definitely not my favourite of the series. I enjoyed Joel and Sophie a LOT. They were very enjoyable as lead characters... I just felt this lacked whatever it was that the others had. I think it might have moved a little too fast? Perhaps slowing down and letting the characters talk and get to know each other on the page instead of in-between unwritten time jumps would have benefit the story moreso than jumping weeks at a time? I'm not sure. Either way, not mad about this at all and would definitely check out this author a little more. This one just ended up not being quite right for me.

  26. 5 out of 5

    M.E. Carter

    Welp. I wasn't expecting to cry. But of course I boohooed and ended up with puffy eyes for church.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Patricia Wonderland

    No Whisk No Reward is Ellie Kay's debut novel. For her first book she delivers a good story with two interesting characters. I really liked Sophie, her passion for her job, her determination, her generosity, her humor. She doesn't judge others by listening to gossips. She's confident when she's cooking but when she participated to a show on television she lost her way and that's something we can relate. Yes she's human with an anxiety issue, being in front of cameras can disturb everyone. Her new No Whisk No Reward is Ellie Kay's debut novel. For her first book she delivers a good story with two interesting characters. I really liked Sophie, her passion for her job, her determination, her generosity, her humor. She doesn't judge others by listening to gossips. She's confident when she's cooking but when she participated to a show on television she lost her way and that's something we can relate. Yes she's human with an anxiety issue, being in front of cameras can disturb everyone. Her new coworkers/ friends help her build her confidence back. They're a great team, really supportive. So i liked our heroine even if her inner monologues are a bit too long sometimes. For everyone in Green Valley Joel is handsome but cold, distant, dodgy, he speaks very little and is not trustworthy. Because of prejudices and rumors he's lonely. But of course he's not what those rumors say. I loved his story and the lesson behind it. In a very small town, where everybody knows everybody, gossip can destroy a life, or at least isolate an innocent. Sophie is the first person he meets who doesn't want to trust gossip and sees him for who he really is. And he's a good man! In this book Jenn and Cletus Winston are very present but they are so different from what we are used to, i was disappointed... Same issue for Tempest from Stud Muffin. So a 3.5* for me.

  28. 5 out of 5

    KathyB

    I liked this story, but didn't love it. I thought the slow burn was a little too slow, and story stalled a little near the end. The hero was great at the beginning, but the push back near the end didn't work for me. This was a decent addition to the series, but not a favorite. 3.5 Stars

  29. 5 out of 5

    Carissa

    I only got to 60% before I dnf. this is my first book my Ellie Kay. Sadly, the main couple and the story just wasn't for me. I received this book at my request and have voluntarily left this unbiased review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Cassandra Martin

    This was such a fun read! This debut author did a wonderful job adding to the Donner Bakery Series. Again I'm off searching for copycat recipes that are mentioned in the book! It was lovely to see a redemption story for some of the characters we didn't 'like' in Penny's Books (Winston Brother's Series). Sophie and Joel found their own redemptions in this very sweet story.

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