Thursday, July 17, 2014


Title: Bittersweet
Author: Sarah Ockler
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publication Date: January 3, 2012
Genres: YA, Contemporary Romance
Reviewed by: Ellen Fritz
Ellen’s rating: 4/5


Once upon a time, Hudson knew exactly what her future looked like. Then a betrayal changed her life, and knocked her dreams to the ground. Now she’s a girl who doesn’t believe in second chances... a girl who stays under the radar by baking cupcakes at her mom’s diner and obsessing over what might have been.

So when things start looking up and she has another shot at her dreams, Hudson is equal parts hopeful and terrified. Of course, this is also the moment a cute, sweet guy walks into her life... and starts serving up some seriously mixed signals. She’s got a lot on her plate, and for a girl who’s been burned before, risking it all is easier said than done.

It’s time for Hudson to ask herself what she really wants, and how much she’s willing to sacrifice to get it. Because in a place where opportunities are fleeting, she knows this chance may very well be her last...


A tale of self-discovery, friendship and shifting relationships, Bittersweet utterly captivated me. When Hudson Avery botches her chance at professional ice skating, and her parents separate, she becomes the cupcake-making queen of the town. However, despite her success with her tasty, inventive cupcakes and her efforts to help her mother in their diner, the ice continues to beckon her.

The main character, Hudson Avery, is the kind of strong yet realistically vulnerable female lead that I like. Throughout this story of self-exploration, this skillfully crafted character shows natural, and often painful, growth. Her inner dialogue is extremely witty and definitely makes for numerous laugh-out-loud moments.  

Although I generally dislike love triangles, the relationship between Hudson, Will, and Josh moves the story along rather than provide the reader with pages full of romantic angst. Both Josh and Will seem to have a hidden agenda throughout the story and it is only close to the end that the truth about these boys are revealed. The relationships between Hudson and her mother as well as that between her and her best friends, are described in an in-depth, but still entertaining, way. Ambition and corruption play a major role in this book and have a profound influence on all the relationships.

The lively, quirky dialogue, enhanced by Hudson's imaginative, dreamy thought patterns, kept me smiling. A wonderful book to relax with, I highly recommend this story of friendship, important choices, exciting moments on the ice and tastefully written romance.

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Sarah Ockler is the bestselling author of novels for teens, including The Book of Broken Hearts, Bittersweet, Fixing Delilah, and the critically acclaimed Twenty Boy Summer, a YALSA Teens' Top Ten nominee and IndieNext List pick. Her latest, #scandal, hits the shelves in June 2014.

Sarah is a champion cupcake eater, coffee drinker, night person, and bookworm. When she's not writing or reading at home in Colorado, she enjoys taking pictures, hugging trees, and road-tripping through the country with her husband, Alex.

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