top of page
  • Writer's pictureKelly Swan Taylor

The Winning Ingredient Goes on Tour!

Updated: Jan 6, 2022

It happened like a whirlwind. One day, I was chatting with one of my young reviewers, Haadiya, about great ways to get my book in the hands of like-minded readers, when she suggested a book tour with the company "Turn the Page Tours."** Shortly thereafter, I was signing and packing up a couple dozens copies of my young adult novel The Winning Ingredient for avid reviewers, bloggers, and booktox users, and sending along my ebook version to international readers.

Once the initial excitement faded, I admit I was shaking a bit in my boots at the thought of my debut book being spotlighted. But once I got over my nerves, I was blown away by the experience and the readers' posts. The reviewers and bloggers were kind, thorough, and dedicated to their task with amazingly creative posts and thoughtful and touching comments. Not only did they spend time with my words, they connected with them, the story, and the characters. Below are some of my favorite posts. I hope you enjoy them as much as I did!



Favourite #1: Baking, FOOD, YUM.

The whole book is about baking. A lot of things I cannot eat (nut allergies, yas), but there was so much other stuff that I could eat and I really wanted to lick my Kindle. Many a times. Believe me. I just wanted to give my Kindle a big slobber to see if any taste would come true. I just love all that Mia cooks up in the kitchen and I loved how she kept adjusting, trying, reverse engineering the food. I wanted to be her friend. To be a tester for her. And not only baked goods make an appearance, we also read about delicious lasagne, pasta and meatballs, and a lot of other food and yes, while writing my stomach remembers those and is rumbling. XD

Favourite #2: The romance, the chemistry, just KISS already.

While for most of the book nothing exactly happens between Mia and Bryce, I was still shipping hard. Cheering loudly for these two. From the moment they met I just loved their chemistry and I was looking forward to seeing them connect, get closer. However, with Mia reading something she shouldn’t have, things were a bit bumpier. Oh, and Mia is also just like me, totally oblivious to anyone’s advances. XD But despite it taking a long time for Mia to figure out her feelings, I loved the romance. Because anyone can see the spark. And I don’t mind a slowburn with tons of sweet moments that make you scream that the characters should just Kiss already.

Favourite #3: Sports, tackles, oh my.

I am normally not a football (was that the sport) fan, I mean it is not a thing in my country. And normally I am not 100% in it, but the author managed to make me very excited for the sports in this one. It helps that it was a big part of the story. The it was something important to all the characters. Plus, the matches were very well-written and it was as if I was there. I also love that Mia knows a lot about the sports and can also kick some butt at it. It is quite rare for books with football in it to have a female character being good at it/having a very big interest in it.

Favourite #4: Side-characters, Zach, Eli, Chloe, YAS

This book has a TON of fantastic side-characters and I just love love love them. From tiny little brother Eli who is just the cutest (and maybe a bit overdosed on sugar after the events in this book) to friends Chloe and Harper who were so fun and sweet. There wasn’t a side-character I didn’t like, in fact I loved all of them and loved it when we got a new character added to the cast. I loved the friendships between the characters.

Favourite #5: Mental health, standing up for yourself, mourning, I am struggling with the words

There are various in this one. From Mia needing to stand up for herself and take better care of herself because she is burning out at this rate and how her friends try to talk to her about it and try to help her to Zach’s and Bryce’s losses. Bryce’s a bit fresher, but Zach’s still very present in life. We see how each character try to grow, get better, feel better. I love how everyone is there for each other. Mia has her friends and Bryce. And Mia tries to help her friends as well, I just ADORED what she did for both Bryce and Zach to help them out.

And not just that, but Mia is learning how to stand up for what she believes in, like the bakery. Throughout the book we see her try to perfect everything, but her friends also tell her that she should just go for it. I was so proud of her when she finally went for it.

Favourite #6: The Writing Style

I just adored the writing style of this book. Everything really flowed and clicked and matched together. As I said, great side characters, but that is also a clear sign of great writing style. I have read enough books with tons of side characters and in the end they just felt like the same character… or they just never stood out. In this one each character was brought to life. The writing style kept me into this book, made me want to read.

There you have it 6 favourites! I would highly recommend this book to everyone!

**To read the full review, check out:

MY FAVORITE BOOKTOK - BY ALEX LOPEZ @thereadingcornerforall

"I’m excited to share my review reel for #TheWinningIngredient by debut author @kellyswantaylor!

Reasons why I loved the winning ingredient

The main characters, Mia and Bryce were written with a beautiful sense of vulnerability.

There were so many delicious descriptions that it makes you want to run to a bakery.

In her debut work, Kelly Swan Taylor is able to weave a love of heritage, the ingredients to love, and the foundations of friendship.

Be sure to treat your shelf with this read!"


Thanks to: @EllisonLane, @midnightbooklover, @shereadsagain, @brinnsbooks, @ilashreads, @sparetimereader, @sheafandink, @leannreadsbooks, @tattooedtreereads, @delightful.reading, @moonlight_rendezvous, @ebmackenzie, and @purpleshadowhunter


--"The Winning Ingredient is a novel full of heart, baking, and football." --Caitlyn, @delightful.reading

--"The author brings two unlikely people together who while discovering each other's struggles also find an unexpected friendship that encompasses their community. The ending was perfect." --Candy, @purpleshadowhunter

--"There was a part where tears were just streaming down my cheeks! Patriotism gets me every time." --Tristen, @sharetimereader

--" Mia and her best friend Zach had a strictly platonic relationship this whole book. It’s kind of rare to see this in a YA novel. It’s refreshing to see a girl and a guy stay friends without any romance added. I am extremely grateful to the author for this. Also, the friendship between Chloe, Harper, and Mia really felt like an authentic girl friendship . . .

The focus on family, in general, and cherishing memories of lost loved ones is poignant. Honestly, this might be one of my favorite portrayals of grief in a YA novel . . .

I am really excited to see what Kelly Swan Taylor writes next! I can’t believe this is her debut." --Caitlyn, @delightful.reading

--"High school football and a family's Italian bakery are a winning combination of friendship and passion. My only caution is to avoid reading on an empty stomach!" --@jan35104974

--"I really loved the baking aspects! They were both super fun and infuriating. I wanted the cannoli and biscotti Mia was always making, and I was so sad that I couldn't have it. Seriously, torturing us with all of those beautiful descriptions was evil . . .

I enjoyed the way this flipped the normal stereotypes in romances, it was a breath of fresh air. Their personalities complimented each other nicely, and I enjoyed their banter." --@brinnsbooks

--"One of the strongest elements of the book is surely its cultural representation as our protagonist Mia, is Italian-American. Her bakery is an extension of her past, ancestors and culture and carrying on this legacy is a burden Mia carries quite proudly." --Diya



Thank you again to my tour organizer Haadiya, "Turn the Page Tours," and the readers. I loved your enthusiasm and seeing my novel through your eyes. Can't wait to share what's coming up next!

**Learn more about Turn the Page Tours and its owners Belle, Nathalie, and Nikole here

39 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All
bottom of page