Series: Sweet #1
Author: Emmy Laybourne
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends, Macmillan
Publication date: June 2nd 2015
Target Audience: Young Adult
Genres: Action & Adventure, Contemporary, Horror, Romance, Social Issues
Length: 288 Pages
Find It: Goodreads
Buy It: Amazon|B&N|Book Depository
Emmy Laybourne, author of the Monument 14 trilogy, takes readers on a dream vacation that goes first comically, then tragically, then horrifyingly wrong!
The luxurious celebrity cruise launching the trendy new diet sweetener Solu should be the vacation of a lifetime. But Laurel is starting to regret accepting her friend Viv’s invitation. She's already completely embarrassed herself in front of celebrity host Tom Forelli—the hottest guy ever!—and she's too sick to even try the sweetener. And that's before Viv and all the other passengers start acting really strange.
Tom knows that he should be grateful for this job and the chance to shed his former-child-star image. His publicists have even set up a romance with a sexy reality star. But as things on the ship start to get wild, he finds himself drawn to a different girl. And when the hosting gig turns into an expose on the shocking side effects of Solu, it's Laurel that he's determined to save.
“Looking around, I see all these wealthy people – all the minor celebrities and their faces are drawn and lined and angry.
Clothes are draping off them.
They look like extras in some bizarre modern-day luxury-cruise production of Les Miserables.”
- Laybourne’s writing style is to the point and easy to read making this a fast quick summer read. I was sucked in from the start and really wanted to know what was going to happen next…because believe me…if something sounds too good to be true…it usually is!!
- With more than one important social issue at it’s core…Sweet is more than just another
- The dual POV’s. It worked here. It was great to be able to see what was going on during the cruise from both Laurel & Tom’s perspectives.
- Speaking of their perspectives…they both worked…especially Laurel’s. I’ve mentioned before that character development is one of Emmy’s strengths and I believe that show’s here. Laurel and Viv are both such different people…yet they both…especially Laurel, stand true to their beliefs and they have such a great relationship. I’m so proud of Laurel:)
- The tension build up….the whole 1st half of the novel, we know something is coming…we just don’t know what…love that!
Less than Purrfect Elements:
- The secondary characters were not as strong as I would have liked…although they were all interesting foils to Laurel and Tom.
- The romance was a bit too much insta-love for my taste…even considering the forced confines and stress of the situation.
- The last third of the book just threw me for a loop. I don’t want to give anything away…but I was right…something was coming…just not in exactly the way I expected! lol
This is a great summer read that has the ability to check multiple boxes all at once. You’ve got Romance, horror and some great underlying commentary on multiple social issues ranging from our societies crazy focus on celebrities to our cultures skewed perspectives on body image. A quick read that didn’t wow me as much as I’d hoped…but was thoroughly enjoyable and left me thinking.