Author: Jackson Pearce
Series: Fairytale Retellings #2
Release Date: August 23rd, 2011
Number of Pages: 310
Publisher: Little Brown
SWEETLY is a modernization of Hansel and Gretel and a companion book to SISTERS RED.
Twelve years ago, Gretchen, her twin sister, and her brother went looking for a witch in the forest. They found something. Maybe it was a witch, maybe a monster, they aren’t sure—they were running too fast to tell. Either way, Gretchen’s twin sister was never seen again.
Years later, after being thrown out of their house, Gretchen and Ansel find themselves in Live Oak, South Carolina, a place on the verge of becoming a ghost town. They move in with Sophia Kelly, a young and beautiful chocolatier owner who opens not only her home, but her heart to Gretchen and Ansel.
Yet the witch isn’t gone—it’s here, lurking in the forests of Live Oak, preying on Live Oak girls every year after Sophia Kelly’s infamous chocolate festival. But Gretchen is determined to stop running from witches in the forest, and start fighting back. Alongside Samuel Reynolds, a boy as quick with a gun as he is a sarcastic remark, Gretchen digs deeper into the mystery of not only what the witch is, but how it chooses its victims. Yet the further she investigates, the more she finds herself wondering who the real monster is, and if love can be as deadly as it is beautiful.
This book should come with a warning: This book will probably leave you craving for chocolate, especially if you love chocolate.
I must say I really, really enjoyed this book. I did like Sisters Red, but I didn’t like it as much as this one. It was fun, captivating and excitingly good. I love the uncertainty of who’s real bad, who’s not, who knows, who doesn’t, ect…
The story is set in the same world as Sisters Red, but revolves around new characters. The narrator, Gretchen, was fun to follow. I liked that there was only one narrator, even if I was slightly curious to know what Ansel was thinking. Gretchen was interesting to follow, because there was more going on in her head than simply the story with Sophie and the missing girls. She had her past to deal with, her vanished sister. I like that even thought she was scared of the “Witch” she was trying to become stronger, to be able to defend herself against him.
Ansel wasn’t my favorite character in this book, simply because I didn’t enjoy his story line with Sophie that interesting. I wanted to know more about Sophia, but through Gretchen rather that him. Why? Because Gretchen was a much more complex character that we may have thought at first. There’s more than meet the eyes with her, that for sure. We can see that easily when she is with Samuel. Ah, Samuel. I liked how he was with Gretchen. I liked that he wasn’t simply the nice guy that Gretchen could fall in love with. No, he has a strong personality that makes him a little less approachable.
Jackson Pearce’s retelling is far from the Disney version of Hansel and Gretel. A new twist on a story that most of us think we know. Yet, do we really?