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Sweet

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October 29, 2015  
 
2.9 (11)
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4 reviews with 1 stars

11 reviews

 
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Overall rating 
 
2.9
 
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Ratings (the higher the better)
Story held my interest
Writing style
Characters
User Review
Discuss the setting and the role it played. Describe when and where the story takes place.
Who are the main characters? What problems or conflicts does each character face in the book? Briefly describe each character.
What are the good points of this book? What did the author do well? Tell why you liked the book.
What, if any, were the bad points in the book? What did you feel the author did poorly? Tell why you didn't like the book.
This is where you give a brief summary of the book. Tell about at least two events that took place in the story. Don't give away the ending but give a 20 second synopsis that describes the story.
Without giving away the ending tell whether or not the ending was satisfying. Did the end fit the story?
4 results - showing 1 - 4  
 
Ordering 
 
Overall rating 
 
1.3
Story held my interest 
 
1.5
Writing style 
 
1.0
Characters 
 
1.5

The Not-So-Sweet Truth about Sweet

User Review

Setting
The book is set in modern times, or the very near future, aboard The Extravagance, a luxury cruise ship that appears to be even more magnificent that the Titanic. The brilliance of the ship provides a striking contrast to the grotesque events that take place in the book, which is interesting to observe as a reader. In addition, a cruise ship is an unusual setting for a horror novel, which provides uniqueness to the story. The fact that the book is set in the present also develops a sense of tension in the reader, because it suggests the possibility that the events that take place in the story are not far off from events that could happen in real life.
Characters
I felt like the characters in Sweet were not believable at all. For example, Laurel, one of the book’s two main protagonists, is just generally irritating to listen to. The chapters that are written in her point of view started off as snarky and quirky at the beginning of the book, which is acceptable at the beginning of the book because the tone is a lot less intense. Her immaturity comes off as endearing, and as a reader, I overlooked it. However, later in the novel, once the action picks up and the scary events begin to take place, she still remains just as immature and annoying. It’s frustrating to listen to her state obvious facts and sigh about how attractive Tom is when she really should be more worried about the literal murders going on around her! I did find it refreshing that she, as a character, was legitimately comfortable in her own shoes and confident with her body type, but I think she doesn’t develop throughout the story at all. She starts out as an immature, teenage girl who swoons over hot celebrity personalities, and this is basically the same way she ends the novel. She doesn’t learn anything about herself, she just falls into a couple lucky situations and somehow lands a famous boyfriend in six days. There was almost no change in her, and this layered on top of her unrealistic reaction to the events around her makes for a character that I didn’t want to pay any attention to at all. The other protagonist, handsome television star Tom Fiorelli, really wasn’t much better. I found him boring and cynical of everyone around him, which made the chapters written in his point of view unpleasant to read. His so-called “love” for Laurel is extremely unbelievable. The two have only known each other for six days. Six! That is nowhere near enough time for these two polar opposites to fall in love. It makes sense that they would be allies in this situation, since neither of them had any Solu, and I may even be able to see them becoming friends because of the sheer amount of horrifying experiences they go through together, but the whole relationship felt out of place. Why are they worrying about kissing each other in Laurel’s closet while there are multiple mass murders going on just outside? The romantic aspect of their relationship was too hurried, too unbelievable, too fast, and ultimately unnecessary to the plot of the novel.
Good Points
This book was tolerable, at best. I wouldn't call it good.
Bad Points
The writing style of this book were overall immature. It was incredibly frustrating to read. The author overused parentheses, using them to cut off thought processes, include unnecessary information, or just separate information that really should have been put together. The terminology used by both characters felt childish and disjointed, which made it hard to get to the story’s actual plot. For example, Laurel uses the phrase “My God” about 900 times throughout the course of the novel. I wish I was joking. Not only does she say this out loud in her dialogue, but she also ccrams it into every piece of her narration! It’s childish and an inaccurate representation of how a teenager would act in this situation. The switching viewpoints between Laurel and Tom didn’t help either, because I felt like it was unnecessary. It separated the plot between two characters I didn’t really want to hear from, which made me lose interest in the book. In addition, the book takes on a sort of satirical attitude towards its own story, creating a paradox where the scenes being portrayed are horrific and serious, but the attitude of the narrar was flippant or just over exaggerated. The book made fun of itself, and not in an intentional way, and this really help back the potential of the book. All the errors with the writing style made his really made the book hard to read, and the concept of what might have been a very interesting story was lost.
As I’ve made very clear, this book had several weaknesses. The immaturity of the writing style, the unrealistic characters, the underdeveloped characters, the overly casual phraseology, and the forced romantic relationship between Tom and Laurel all dragged the seemingly interesting concept of the book down and made it hard to read. This was disappointing for me, because I was actually very excited to read this book. I loved the idea, and I wanted so badly to like it. But overall, it just didn’t work. Honestly, it seems like it was written by a semi-talented thirteen year old, who had a really good idea for a story, but couldn’t quite carry it out. The concept had potential, but it was drowned in the childish writing and hastily thrown together characters with no real depth or opportunity for change. It seems like a waste to let a story with so much potential get completely destroyed by the author.
Plot Summary
Sweet by Emmy Laybourne is a horror novel that tells the story of a diet sensation gone wrong. Aboard the Solu Cruise to Lose, the nation’s largest soda corporation, Pipop, launches its new diet sweetener Solu, which promises to get rid of spare weight without ever having to diet. Passengers are promised to lose over 5 percent of their body weight in just six short days, which sounds like a dream come true to the overweight upper class of America. Enter our first protagonist Laurel, who was dragged aboard the cruise by her binge-eating, weight-obsessed, and conveniently rich best friend Vivika. Although Laurel has always been very happy with her size fourteen body, Vivika would do anything to get thin, and the two end up on the cruise together. Our other protagonist Tom Fiorelli is a rising television personality that is looking to use this cruise as a way to shake of his embarrassing memories as a childhood tv star and secure a more serious career. When the new diet sensation is finally revealed on the first day of the cruise, both Tom and Laurel refuse to eat it. Over the next few days aboard the cruise, the passengers are delighted as the sweetener works wonders on their weight, transforming them overnight from obese to model-worthy. However Tom and Laurel are skeptical because it appears the Solu may be working too well. The weight transformations go from drastic to devastating, and the pair soon realize that Solu is not just a trendy sweetener, but a highly addictive drug with eerily grotesque side effects. As Tom and Laurel are hunted down by the bloodthirsty passengers, they struggle to find the truth behind Solu’s nature and the way to save themselves and those they love from the deathly circumstances aboard the ship. Two significant events include the introduction of the Solu at the beginning of the book, where the sweetener appears to be innocent and even magical, and the mob near the end of the book that tramples a man and hangs the creator of Solu in a desperate attempt to obtain more of the diet wonder-drug.
Ending
The ending of the novel, sadly and unsurprisingly, didn’t save the book from its downward spiral. It felt rushed and hurried, like the author was trying to force feed a half-baked conclusion down the throats of her characters and her readers because she had to run out and get groceries later that night. Laurel and Tom are both severely injured by their own stupid decisions, and the way they ended up escaping the ship was ridiculous. They ended up creating more problems than they solved. The cliffhanger ending in the last chapter was especially unsatisfying, because it was just completely unnecessary. What was supposed to be a chilling end to the novel was, in reality, a cheap grab at a cliche cliffhanger that didn’t feel like it matched up with the rest of the book, except that it was equally ill-written. I believe the author was trying to send a message to her audience about the importance of a positive self-image and the seriousness of weight as a worldwide issue, but honestly obesity is not a worldwide problem. It’s not something that we need to write horror novels about, because it is so rare and insignificant when compared to other, more pertinent world issues like, say, world hunger. Sweet, in the end, just came off as a badly written, unbelievable, and irritating book to read.
Do you recommend this book?
No
Language
G
Sexual Content
PG
Violence
R
Drug and Alcohol Use
R
Overall rating 
 
0.5
Story held my interest 
 
0.5
Writing style 
 
0.5
Characters 
 
0.5

User Review

Setting
The story takes place on a cruise ship. Being on the ship makes it hard to leave and escape which becomes difficult when everyone but Tom and Laurel become addicted to Solu and are killing to get more. The book was written in modern day and attempted to show the “trend” of being thin.
Characters
Laurel and Tom are both main characters in the book Sweet. The chapters alternate between the two characters so the reader can see two different perspective on things. Laurel is a character who is perfectly fine with her weight and does not think she needs to be any thinner. She does not think her friend Viv should worry about her weight either. Laurel is 17 and the youngest on the ship and by far the biggest misfit. Laurel has a romantic relationship with Tom, a character who “loved her just the way she was’’ It was such a typical, overdone relationship that all authors use in teenage novels. Tom was the celebrity who loved an average girl and did not want her to change.
Good Points
The only good thing about this book was the author at least switched the chapters between Laurel and Tom for alternating perspectives.
Bad Points
The book was absolutely terrible. It was boring and was it was painful to get through. The book took forever to get to the action and when it did, it was rushed. There was no build up or suspense. The book made it seem like weight was the biggest problem in the world which is wrong.
Plot Summary
In the book Sweet by Emmy Laybourne two best friends, Laurel and Vivika go on a cruise where a new sweetener, Solu, that helps with weight loss is being given out. The cruise is filled with many celebrities, many of who do not need to lose weight. Tom, an anchor for the cruise, happens to interview Laurel and Vivika. Laurel is seasick and throws up on Tom. Because she is seasick she does not eat anything with the sweetener but very self conscious Viv does. Tom also does not eat anything with the sweetner because his trainer Derek does not think he should risk all the progress made. With Solu being so addictive anyone who had it became willing to kill and it was up to Tom and Laurel to make it out alive and stop everyone not on the cruise from buying such an addictive substance.
Ending
I was not satisfied. The ending left potential madness and Laybourne has no plan on writing another book. (which is fine I would not waste my time reading if there was) The ending was stupid but so was the rest of the book. Laybourne was trying to get everyone to love and be comfortable with their weight which would be more effective if she wrote a decent book. All i got out of this novel was how to not write a book.
Do you recommend this book?
No
Language
PG
Sexual Content
PG
Violence
R
Drug and Alcohol Use
G
Overall rating 
 
0.7
Story held my interest 
 
0.5
Writing style 
 
0.5
Characters 
 
1.0

Sweet

User Review

Setting
The story only takes place on the ship and only at the end does Laybourne describe the world off of the ship. Because the characters are confined to the ship in the middle of the ocean, you feel the tension when things start to go wrong and they cant leave. People are literally killing each other and there is no way for the characters to escape. Because the reader knows they can not leave it creates this tension for the characters that the reader can relate to.
Characters
Viv I feel had the best effectiveness because Laybourne uses her to discuss some serious social issues like obesity and body shaming. Laybourn, in a kind of satoricall way, tries to show her readers the problems society has of the need for the picture perfect body and anything other than perfect is in inadequate. The character I feel had the least effectiveness was Tom, because the only point to his character was to create the romantic aspect to the novel which was short lived and he only showed interest in laurel for the reclaim of his fame.
Good Points
None...
Bad Points
Laybourne wrote this book with the mixed tone of an unintentional satire mixed with a coming of age story. I feel that Laybourne added so many unneeded exaggerations to her story that the underlying message of eating disorders gets undermined by the satirical elements of the story. I also feel that the switching viewpoints throughout the book was confusing and unnecessary.
Plot Summary
Emmy Laybourne’s novel Sweet starts with a 17 year old girl Laurel and her friends Viv and Tom who go on a cruise where a new diet sweetener, Solu, will be launched. Laurel is fine with the way she looks so she does not try it, she is just there to support Viv who is ashamed of her weight. When the sweetener has obvious side effects Laurel and her friends are stuck on the boat and has no other option but try to stay alive.
Ending
I feel like Laybourne was trying to bring to realization that obesity and eating disorders are a problem in todays society and they need to be addressed.
Do you recommend this book?
No
Language
PG
Sexual Content
PG
Violence
R
Drug and Alcohol Use
PG
Overall rating 
 
1.0
Story held my interest 
 
0.5
Writing style 
 
1.5
Characters 
 
1.0

Sweet

User Review

Setting
This novel was written in modern times. The characters talk about what the coolest new trend is on tv and they are addicted to their phones. The novel based on a cruise called “The cruise to lose” on the pacific ocean. Some characters are from all over the world to try this new dieting sweetener. The sweetener has a side effect that makes people so addicted to it that they are willing to do anything to get it.
Characters
The main character Laurel Willard is a young girl who is the most unexpected person to go on the cruise. She is awkward and the only reason she is going on the “cruise to lose” is because her best friend invited her. She does not fit in at all which in my opinion is what makes the story interesting. I feel that laurel is the only character that was somewhat portrayed good. Tom Fiorelli is a boy who is just looking for fame. I think that his character was a little cheesy. The two of them end up having a short lived romance which i think is just bs and did not work at all.
Bad Points
I felt like the whole book was a bit rushed and confusing. I can see where the author tried to be complex with using the point of view changes but i felt that it was confusing. I feel as if there was no character development. The writer was trying to compile a horror, mystery, and romance and i just dont think she pulled it off. I feel as if she missed some key points that make a good book a good book. I felt that some of the characters were just useless and unnecessary as if she was trying to add character development but failed. I did not think this book was good in a sense that it was a waste of my time to read.
Plot Summary
In the Emmy Laybourne novel, Sweet is supposed to be a thriller that gets people's attention in a weird way. A young girl named Laurel gets invited by her friend ,viv, to go on the adventure of a lifetime cruise. The cruise is filled with wealthy celebrities who want the change to lose weight, and that is exactly what this cruise is supposed to do. Since the cruise is full of top chart celebrities, of course there is a new anchor. Tom is a boy who grew up as a famous little boy called “Tom Tom”, but once he grew older he was not as popular as he once was. Tom is trying to gain his publicity back by attending this weight loss cruise. The whole idea of the cruise is a new sweetner that is supposed to help people lose weight. The sweetener has an unexpected side effect that leads the ship to horror.
Ending
I felt that the ending was a way of the author just kind of wrapping things up to be done. I felt as if the ending was just going back to the beginning with no plot or anything. I got out of this book that some people think that weight is a huge big issue, but in my opinion it is not the biggest world issue.

Do you recommend this book?
No
Language
PG
Sexual Content
PG-13
Violence
PG-13
Drug and Alcohol Use
PG-13
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