Published by Hodder and Stoughton in 2008
Challenges - 100+ and Library.
This is one of those books I have been waiting to get my hands on for ages and when the library called to say it was in, I was so excited. I absolutely love Sarah Addison Allen and this is only her second book.
I read her first book Garden Spells last year and thought it was fantastic, a romantic book with a touch of Practical Magic, and an apple tree that keeps throwing apples, I was desperate to read her second book too.
The Sugar Queen did not disappoint and I actually read it in one sitting, to the point where I am seriously lacking sleep today because of it.
The Sugar Queen is about a young woman called Josie, who comes from a wealthy background and has got it into her head, that because she was such an awful child, she has to spend the rest of her life waiting on her invalid, haughty, widowed mother to make up for it. Josie takes her to all her clubs and lunches and beauty treatments without a thought for herself. Basically Josie has no life.
She wakes up one morning to find Della Lee, the local prostitute and minor offender camped out in her wardrobe, refusing to move and needing somewhere to stay and sort her life out. Josie is unable to get rid of her and is secretly scared that Della will tell her mother about her secret stash of sweets, cakes, romantic novels and travel brochures hidden in the false back of her cupboard.
So Josie is stuck with Della for the foreseeable future, keeping her secret from the rest of the household.
Della is on a mission to change Josie's dull life and sends her on various errands where she encounters news friends. She becomes friendly with Chloe a cafe owner who has split up with her boyfriend and also in need of a friend. Together they become good friends and help each other to change their lives.
I am not going to tell you any more because it really would spoil this book as their are lots of very magical things that happen. This is not your average chick lit book and would definitely appeal to Alice Hoffman fans.
The characters all have unusual qualities. Chloe is my favourite, as she attracts books. All through her life, books would just turn up and basically follow her around until she read them. During this book, Chloe is constantly followed by forgiveness books, which keep appearing to help her solve her relationship problems. I would love to be Chloe and have books just turn up begging to be read!
The book is set in Bald Slope Ski Resort just before the winter holiday makers arrive and takes you through a magical and food filled Thanksgiving. The book is packed full of scrumptious food references, from the sugary frost, to the lemon tart lotions and the peppermint oil house fragrance.
I absolutely loved this book and it will definitely be in my top ten by the end of the year.
I can't say there is anything I didn't like, only that I don't have a pile of Sarah Addison Allen books left to read.
Sarah Addison Allen's next book doesn't come out until 2010 and is called The Girl Who Chased the Moon and I cannot wait to get my hands on it.
I have just noticed that Sugar Queen has only just come out in paperback in America this week, so go buy it and make me jealous that you have the thrill left of still having this book to read.
Here is Sarah's website which has some fun competitions on.