Friday, September 9, 2011

Review: The Sweetest Thing

 I do not own this picture. It is from Goodreads and used for review purposes only (

Title: The Sweetest Thing
Author: Christina Mandelski
Source: NetGalley
Publisher: Egmont USA
Publication Date: 05/10/2011

Blurb from Goodreads (which I do not own but am only using for review purposes):

In the world of Sheridan Wells, life is perfect when she's decorating a cake. Unfortunately everything else is a complete mess: her mom ran off years ago, her dad is more interested in his restaurant, and the idea of a boyfriend is laughable.

But Sheridan is convinced finding her mom will solve all her problems - only her dad's about to get a cooking show in New York, which means her dream of a perfect family will be dashed.

Using just the right amount of romance, family drama, and cute boys, The Sweetest Thing will entice fans with its perfect mixture of girl-friendly ingredients.

The Genre: This is a contemporary hobby/romance YA. It's heavy on Sheridan's love for cake decorating with romantic complications and emotional turmoil and decisions. No magic, just buttercream.

The Cover: I think the cover is pretty cute. It definitely matches the book, and I almost prefer that they did this as opposed to having a cake on the cover, because they talked up Sheridan's Cake Girl skills so much that if I had actually seen what they consider to be awesome cake-wise, I may have been disappointed. So, this is the safer, colorful alternative.

The Plot: This is definitely a chick flick teen novel. I picked it up because I'm a foodie TV watcher, and an entire book about cooking shows and a girl fanatical about cake decorating sounded neat to me. The food elements of the book were HUGE, with lots of romantic complications, but there was a big emotional element with Sheridan and her less than perfect family issues. My warning, though, the reader will see a lot of chick-flick-like woes and complications. It can run a little predictable as far as the romance is concerned, but that's kind of what you sign up for with a chick flick. If you want an easy breezy book that will have the necessary train-wrecks of complications that move the plot along, this book would fit the bill. Another thing worth considering is the fact that there is a religious element to the book that I wasn't expecting. It's not preachy, but it is present, in the Catholic but Baptist friendly variety.

The Romantic Element: There is a love triangle, but it's more frustrating than anything else. One of the guys, you'll know who, is great and honest, and makes the book readable, and the other…is…not so great, but the reader can understand the appeal.

The Carry-on Factor: As a sugar sweet romance, The Sweetest Thing delivers exactly what you'd expect, and tons more in the emotional department. It has all the workings of a Lifetime foodie movie for YA, plus family drama that set it apart from other books. I hadn't read a book with a mother like The Sweetest Thing had, that's for sure. And Sheridan can be a frustrating character, but it's done purposefully. As someone who watches cake shows, I knew everything Sheridan was talking about, but it could be new info for those who are interested in cakes, but haven't watched shows about them.

Overall: I can see the appeal of this book. It's sweet; it has lots of ups and downs, and when you think it's getting too frustrating on Sheridan's part, another character will try to balance things out and right the madness. I hadn't read something like this before, and I'd say it's a good read for someone in 9th-11th grade or someone who wants a breezy read that tries to pack a emotional punch (or several). 

For some good news, I just won Harmonic Feedback by Tara Kelly from For the Love of Contemporary. Woot. (FYI, the blog is/will be the bee's knees for all YA sans magic). 

Now to leave you with a song to write by, "Emotion" by Destiny's Child. Because I like the song, and it matches this book sad for sad. lol.

Happy Friday and Happy reading/writing and such!!!

P.S. I did not receive compensation in exchange for this review, but there are several Amazon affiliate links within this post.


  1. Oooh this sounds fun! Thanks for the review!

  2. Great, original review. I've been wanting to pick up this book, but I'll definitely more inclined now. And congrats on winning Harmonic Feedback.That's another book on my TBR list.

  3. This sounds like such a fun read. I LOVE the cover! I would pick it up based on the cover alone.

  4. I wanna eat up that book cover :)
    And I loved EMOTIONS from Destiny's Child. Those were the times when Beyonce still knew how to make a good pop song, before she married that JayZ who ruined her with hip hop :(

  5. You always pick the best songs, Kelley :)

  6. Thanks for the review! I like the cover of the book, and like you, I'm intrigued by the cooking aspect. I'm actually okay with predictable chick lick romance threads. That's why I read these kinds of books. :D

  7. Awesome review! I'll check it out!

  8. Thanks for the review! I've never heard of this one, and I love hearing about new YA books. Thanks!

  9. This book is going to make me hungry, isn't it? It sounds so cute! Great review!

  10. Wait, buttercream isn't magic? I disagree ;) good review.

    I am in your Paranormal group for the Writing Campaign. I accidently left it out when I started following all my group members and am now trying to get caught up!

  11. never heard that version. cool. wrote a few sentences during it.

  12. Sounds like an interesting read! Thanks for the review.

  13. Thanks for posting this great review. Will check this one out!

  14. Hi there, we are in the same YA group, just thought I would pop by and say hello. Sorry it's taken me so long....I'm only just catching up as i've been away. x

  15. it is certainly a delicious cover.