“Maybe there is some combination of sugar, eggs, and flour that can make me care about school dances and four-hundred-meter relay times and college applications. If there is, I will gladly eat piece after piece every day for the rest of my short type-2-diabetic life.”
Molly is a seventeen-year old girl from Florida who suffers from severe depression. Her mother, on a quest to help her feel better and do something she believes will be therapeutic for Molly, decides to take a challenge that will have her baking a different cake every day for one hundred days. While having all the cake she could possibly eat might cheer up some, Molly isn’t sure it will help her. The only thing that makes Molly feel alive and somewhat happy is spending time with her friend, Alex, during their shifts at FishTopia, a local shop that sells saltwater fish. Together they watch old episodes of The Golden Girls and eat take-out from the Chinese restaurant near the shop, and it gives them the perfect chance to spend time together and just hang out, since they rarely get any customers.
Along with Alex, her mother and sister, Molly spends time with her best friend and her therapist, Dr. Brooks (whom she has a massive crush on).
When Molly and Alex’s boss, Charlie, tells them that he is selling FishTopia, Molly is heartbroken – after all, it is the only place where she feels safe and like everything in the world outside the doors to the store is put on hold, and she can just keep spending time with Alex and trying to be happy. So she tries her hardest to come up with a plan to save the store, even if she isn’t sure it will work.
100 Days of Cake is a really cute contemporary romance that deals with a big issue – depression. Depression isn’t talked about too much in YA books, but it’s a very real, lonely, and oftentimes very heartbreaking disorder that affects millions – children, teenagers, and adults alike. I thought the way that depressive disorder and Molly’s treatment was portrayed well in this book, and I really give the author a lot of credit for writing this book. I have suffered from depression since I was a young teenager, and this is the kind of book I would have loved to have in my hands to help me feel like I wasn’t so alone. While Molly, the main character in 100 Days of Cake has a very caring mother and friends, it isn’t the case for everyone who suffers from depression, and I believe this book could be a big help to some of those who aren’t quite as lucky to have a support system on their side.
I can’t count the amount of times that I laughed while reading this book – the tone was often lighthearted and witty, and it really made the pages fly by as I read chapter after chapter, thoroughly enjoying reading about Molly’s life, her thoughts and feelings, and, well…the cakes.
The thing is…this book felt so real. It was a novel full of raw emotions that really lend a voice to what depression actually feels like for the person suffering from it – and those around that person who care. While it was told from Molly’s perspective, you get to witness how those around her who care for her (Molly’s mother, sister, friend, Alex) feel as well, and because of that, it feels like such a true portrayal of the life inside a teenager who is depressed.
“Maybe Alex was right. My need for everything to stay exactly the same was what screwed things up. If things never change, they eventually decay.”
From the very first time I read about Alex and Molly together, it was so obvious that they were perfect for each other. There was such chemistry there and I spent the entire book hoping they would get together. I loved Alex – he was goofy, sweet, and really cared about Molly.
Also, at one point Molly gets a pet hermit crab named Pickles, and Pickles is by far the coolest. He even gets his own little couch! Pickles plays a big part of Molly’s life, and is very important to her…making him very important to the story, as well.
There was one part of the book that I thought wasn’t the best choice to add to the story, and it involves Molly and her therapist, Dr. Brooks. I don’t think that it added anything to the book that was absolutely necessary, and it was probably the only part of the book I really disliked. I managed to get over my dislike for that part of the story, because it was such a good book otherwise, but I just wanted to add that to my review.
100 Days of Cake is a powerful, emotional novel that adds in a bit of humor and inspiration, and has the possibility to really change someone’s life. If you get the chance to read this one, please don’t miss out on it!