Friday, December 2, 2011

Review: The Sugar Queen by Sarah Addison Allen

Pages: 294
Genre: Adult Fiction, Magical Realism
Publisher: Bantam Press, Random house
Release Date: 14/04/2009
Bought it online

In this irresistible novel, Sarah Addison Allen, author of the New York Times bestselling debut, Garden Spells, tells the tale of a young woman whose family secrets—and secret passions—are about to change her life forever.

Josey Cirrini is sure of three things: winter is her favorite season, she’s a sorry excuse for a Southern belle, and sweets are best eaten in the privacy of her closet. For while Josey has settled into an uneventful life in her mother’s house, her one consolation is the stockpile of sugary treats and paperback romances she escapes to each night…. Until she finds her closet harboring Della Lee Baker, a local waitress who is one part nemesis—and two parts fairy godmother. With Della Lee’s tough love, Josey’s narrow existence quickly expands. She even bonds with Chloe Finley, a young woman who is hounded by books that inexplicably appear when she needs them—and who has a close connection to Josey’s longtime crush. Soon Josey is living in a world where the color red has startling powers, and passion can make eggs fry in their cartons. And that’s just for starters.

Brimming with warmth, wit, and a sprinkling of magic, here is a spellbinding tale of friendship, love—and the enchanting possibilities of every new day.

 Ever since reading 'Garden Spells' at the beginning of this year I have had very high expectations for novels written by this author. The two that I've read since (Including 'The Sugar Queen') have definitely met and exceeded those expectations. 'The Sugar Queen' by Sarah Addison Allen is a wonderful novel that -like Allen's other novels- made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

One thing that I really enjoy about books by this author are the small town settings. 'The Sugar Queen' is no exception to this typicality. While all three novels I've read do use a small town as a setting Allen fails to bore me by giving each town its individuality through its quirks.

The characters in her novels are all written about in third person without that feeling of intrusion or judgement that some writers create in their novels. I also liked how the author showed how characters were viewed differently by other characters, rather than just showing things from one perspective. She gives all of her characters a few chances to prove themselves or be understood.

The main character Josey is a little overweight and a bit unsure of her self. I thought she made a great main character because there are a lot of people out there that have the same feelings of self-consciousness or nervousness. Everybody feels a little ashamed of something about themselves, so this book sent an empowering message that you can live life no matter who you are or what you look like.

This book shows us that relationships can be formed through people not because of where they come from, but because of how their lives intersect and who they are as a person. 'The Sugar Queen' shows us that some people still do believe that certain people are untouchable because of who they are. Like 'Jane Eyre', 'The Sugar Queen' shows readers that it's what's on the inside that counts and  that different people look for different things in a person.

The element of magic was also included in this book. The magic isn't necessary to make the story work, but it definitely adds that something special. I really enjoy how this writer makes ordinary things more mysterious and otherworldly. Like anything could happen and the universe is right there at everyone's fingertips.

Another familiarity I was pleased to be accompanied with in this book was the mention of food. Sarah Addison Allen's books have so far talked about barbecue, cakes, food with flowers and now candy. It all makes me incredibly hungry.

Overall, I love love loved this book. 5/5 Stars and a new favourite. I also love the cover. I can't wait to read 'The Peach keeper', but another part of doesn't want to because it might be my last Sarah Addison Allen read for a while. Hopefully she writes plenty more books. I recommend this to anyone with a heart and a sweet tooth.

Garden Spells: Review
The Girl Who Chased the Moon: Review
The Peach Keeper
Your Favourite Blogger,

No comments: