This wholesome story about leaving the big city to start over in the country is a worthwhile and fun read. The Cupcake Queen deals with many relevant topics, including divorce, grief, communication, friendship, and bullying. Small town mean girls are particularly vicious to newcomer Penny, publicly humiliating her and making her life miserable at school. A revenge plot is hatched and carried out, but the main message is that it is best to ignore the meanness or to make fun of it in order to defuse it. Language is very mild and mostly consists of lots of slang names for manure (cr-p, p-op, dung, feces). Penny is a tough and resilient character who provides a good role model for getting through difficult situations. A valuable message is conveyed with regard to the importance of communication between family members. Art in many different forms is used as a vehicle for healing and working through issues, and many characters are artistically talented. This will be an appealing read for older tween and younger teen girls.