A Piece of Cake

  • There are shelves of memoirs about overcoming the death of a parent, childhood abuse, rape, drug addiction, miscarriage, alcoholism, hustling, gangbanging, near-death injuries, drug dealing, prostitution, or homelessness.

    Cupcake Brown survived all these things before she’d even turned twenty. 

    And that’s when things got interesting….

    You have in your hands the strange, heart-wrenching, and exhilarating tale of a woman named Cupcake. It begins as the story of a girl orphaned twice over, once by the death of her mother and then again by a child welfare system that separated her from her stepfather and put her into the hands of an epically sadistic foster parent. But there comes a point in her preteen years—maybe it’s the night she first tries to run away and is exposed to drugs, alcohol, and sex all at once—when Cupcake’s story shifts from a tear-jerking tragedy to a dark comic blues opera. As Cupcake’s troubles grow, so do her voice and spirit. Her gut-punch sense of humor and eye for the absurd, along with her outsized will, carry her through a fateful series of events that could easily have left her dead.

    Young Cupcake learned to survive by turning tricks, downing hard liquor, partying like a rock star, and ingesting every drug she could find while hitchhiking up and down the California coast. She stumbled into gangbanging, drug dealing, hustling, prostitution, theft, and, eventually, the best scam of all: a series of 9-to-5 jobs. But Cupcake’s unlikely tour through the cubicle world was paralleled by a quickening descent into the nightmare of crack cocaine use, till she eventually found herself living behind a Dumpster. 

    Astonishingly, she turned it around. With the help of a cobbled together family of eccentric fellow addicts and “angels”—a series of friends and strangers who came to her aid at pivotalmoments—she slowly transformed her life from the inside out. 

    A Piece of Cake is unlike any memoir you’ll ever read. Moving and almost transgressive in its frankness, it is a relentlessly gripping tale of a resilient spirit who took on the worst of contem-porary urban life and survived it with a furious wit and unyielding determination. Cupcake Brown is a dynamic and utterly original storyteller who will guide you on the most satisfying, startlingly funny, and genuinely affecting tour through hell you’ll ever take.

  • A Piece of Cake: A Memoir

    By Cupcake Brown

    Paperback: 480 pages

  • "It dazzles you with the amazing change that is possible in one lifetime. We see a woman learn to build a family from strangers who help her because she is another human being trying to overcome horrendous circumstances. It is a story that is poetic in its simplicity, beautifully stripped to the basics" Washington Post "Extraordinary... An engaging account of a remarkable life filled with pain and wisdom, hope and redemption" San Francisco Chronicle "Her story of survival and triumph is incredible and often rough. Readers who like gritty, urban nonfiction will enjoy this" Booklist 20060315 "Want to be inspired by a story that's far from run-of-the-mill? Curl up with Cupcake Brown's harrowing, sugar-free memoir..." Marie Claire "Incredibly frank and funny memoir " Closer


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