Saturday, 5 July 2014

Review: Sweet Honey by Cathy Cassidy

Pub. Date: June 5 2014 
  Publisher: Puffin, Penguin 
 Series:  Chocolate Box Girls series (#5) Links to previous books in the series: (Book 1) (Book 2) (Book 3) (Book 4) 
Source: Copy for review   Author Twitter Here 

The chocolate box girls.Each sister has a different story to tell, which one will be your favourite?
Honey is going to live with her dad in Australia. Determined to make a fresh start, she couldn't be further away from the tough times at Tanglewood.
Her new life is a dream come true - until school begins. The girls are different from Honey's friends in England and the only person who seems to understand her is the cute boy from the beach she's chatting to online.
But when he, the girls at school and even her dad start breaking promises, who can she trust? All alone on the other side of the world, Honey's past is about to catch up with her . . .
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A huge thank you to those at Penguin for sending me this copy of Sweet Honey in exchange for an honest and full review. I was so excited to read the next and latest novel in Cathy Cassidy's amazing Chocolate Box Girls series, links to my reviews of the previous novels are above. 
I was so excited to read this book as it is written from the perspective of Honey Tanberry, the tearaway rebellious and rule breaking eldest sister. I really didn't know what to expect from reading a book set in Honey's mind but I was blown away by this book.

I loved the characters in this novel. Reading the book from Honey's point of view, I felt a lot more sympathetic towards her situation than I have felt in other books in the series and, surprisingly, found myself relating a lot to her mindset and the situations she found herself in. Underneath the facade she has emitted in the previous novels, Honey is a vulnerable and lonely child. I really enjoyed reading about her character and seeing how much she grew as an individual and as a character in this novel alone. 
I also liked the introduction of new characters in this book. Honey has gone to Australia to live with her Dad, and his girlfriend Emma. I liked the character of Emma, but felt she was a little too timid and weak to stand up for herself. She was a nice character and read as being very realistic. Honey's Dad, Greg, was my least favourite character of the novel. I had high expectations of him as in the previous novels, Honey is always talking about how wonderful he is but when she arrives in Australia, he is not exactly how she thought he was. He was very manipulative, selfish and angry. I really disliked his character as he only cared about himself and his image & reputation. 
Other new characters came in the form of Honey's new friends, Ash, Bennie and Tara. I never really formed a connection with Tara and Bennie but I did feel they provided a good role as background characters for the main story. Ash, I loved Ash from the moment Honey encountered him. His job at the beach cafe sounds magical and his back story was quite sad. I loved the friendship and relationship that formed between Ash & Honey over the course of the novel and hope to hear more about him in the next book. 
I liked the fact that although this book is focusing on Honey, her other sisters were still mentioned and semi-present in the story. Coco and Honey's relationship is the best one she has currently with her family and it was nice seeing that lovely sister relationship they have. I was also happy to hear about Summer throughout the story as I think her eating disorder storyline is one of the most difficult to write about in the series, yet Cathy Cassidy does an amazing job.
As said above, something Cathy Cassidy does in this series is not only create a cute and lovely storyline centred around an incredibly realistic teenage girl, but also twines in some serious issues into her novels. Summers eating disorder and recovery was very hard hitting, and in this novel we see Honey deal with the terrors of Cyber and online bullying. This is a problem most people on the Internet, not only teenagers, face regularly as everyone has a twitter, facebook, instagram, snapchat etc,. and are constantly updating their lives. The case of bullying in this book was handled and written really well and provided an honest and real view of how people gain your cyber trust and do these horrible things just because they can. 

Overall another amazing instalment on Cathy Cassidy's wonderful Chocolate Box Girls series. A read that will leave the reader glued to the book for hours and provide them with some honest reflections on social media and running away from problems. Cathy Cassidy's beautiful writing style, perfect characterisation and super sweet series will have readers from 11+ discovering a world of reading. 

Five Stars 
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1 comment:

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