Review: Paris Daillencourt is About to Crumble

Title: Paris Daillencourt is About to Crumble
Author: Alexis Hall
Series: Winner Bakes All (2)
Source: Netgalley. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Genre: Contemporary,
Explicit? Nope
Trigger Warning: Depression, anxiety, cultural insensitivity/ignorance. Author warns for all themselves.
Summary: Paris Daillencourt is a recipe for disaster. Despite his passion for baking, his cat, and his classics degree, constant self-doubt and second-guessing have left him a curdled, directionless mess. So when his roommate enters him in Bake Expectations, the nation’s favourite baking show, Paris is sure he’ll be the first one sent home.

But not only does he win week one’s challenge—he meets fellow contestant Tariq Hassan. Sure, he’s the competition, but he’s also cute and kind, with more confidence than Paris could ever hope to have. Still, neither his growing romance with Tariq nor his own impressive bakes can keep Paris’s fear of failure from spoiling his happiness. And when the show’s vicious fanbase confirms his worst anxieties, Paris’s confidence is torn apart quicker than tear-and-share bread.

But not only does he win week one’s challenge—he meets fellow contestant Tariq Hassan. Sure, he’s the competition, but he’s also cute and kind, with more confidence than Paris could ever hope to have. Still, neither his growing romance with Tariq nor his own impressive bakes can keep Paris’s fear of failure from spoiling his happiness. And when the show’s vicious fanbase confirms his worst anxieties, Paris’s confidence is torn apart quicker than tear-and-share bread.

This review contains spoilers

Read more: Review: Paris Daillencourt is About to Crumble

Oh boy did these two certainly give me fits throughout this book. Both Tariq and Paris are distinct, different characters with their own neurosis and issues.

Paris needs help, and to be honest it is evident from the first few pages that he does. I do empathise with im, but it is almost like he is a character who has become comfortable in his own misery. This competition is about him reaching outside of his comfort zone, but he is often in his own way and I found myself frustrated with him as often as my heart broke for him.

Tariq is almost too much as well, but his opposites attract attitude drew me in quite quickly, though both he and Paris seemed a bit combustible from the get-go. His ability to admit when he was wrong made him a likeable character even as I wondered throughout the book if these two belonged together.

The baking competition remains a wonderful breeding ground for colourful characters, including ones from the previous book who had me laughing out loud, tsking and shaking my head all in good turn. I can’t wait to see what happens here next, and who stumbles upon the stage. It also left me wishing for a little more behind the scenes in my regular baking competition.

It was also interesting to see how the characters responses to things changed based on where they were. Neither felt comfortable out of their own environments and the way they interacted in each of them seemed to change, both of them off kilter when it came to the competition and the differences in each other’s lives.

The ending was hopeful without being too bitter which was appreciated but it was by no means perfect and that was exactly how it should’ve ended. The two characters trying to put aside their differences, reaching for each other while reaching for help externally was a good, hopeful way to end it.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s