Author: Jackson Pearce
Published: August 23rd 2011
Synopsis from Goodreads
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.
Greta's view of Hansel and Gretel
The story of Hansel and Gretel has always ticked me off. Two fat German kids roaming through the forest snacking on bread and leaving a trail so they can find their way back home to stuff their little piggy faces with more food but little do they know that Mommy and Daddy don't want them cuz they can't afford to feed them.
Or at least... that's the one I always tell ;)
And then they find this candy house and start chow dowing on it and licking all the doorknobs and royally ticking off this witchy woman that she decides to totally trap them and eat them before they mistake her for a chocolate bar and wind up eating her.
And while the witch is totally doing her patriotic duty to rid the world of these cavity kids this hunter dude comes along and calls her a child abuser and then murders her while throwing her into the fire thus saving the kids... and then realizing "OH SNAP! Now I have to feed these kids." And I assume they eat him cuz he tastes like a Ranger Cookie or something.
WOAH! That would make Hansel and Gretel like cannibals or something. COOL!
Butters.... In this book we have a slightly different retelling of Hansel and Gretel... more modern and less people eating ;)
Darkfallen devours Sweetly
This was truly amazing. There just isn't any other way to describe it. Hauntingly fantastically gripping...yea that might work!
I don't want to say to much because I will ruin it, and no one wants that. So here I go.
Ansel and Gretchen are all grown up now, but no matter how bad they wish they could that day in the woods. The day that the witch chased them. The day they no longer were the happy threesome, but now the two that lost their sister. No one believed there was a witch in the woods. A witch with yellow eyes. A witch that waited to strike and then took children. Vanished. That's what their little sister had become. As if that wasn't enough their mother couldn't look at Gretchen anymore. All she saw was the twin that vanished. Until eventually the grief took her too. Not long after dad followed suit. Leaving Ansel & Gretchen with a step-mother that couldn't be bothered with them. Ansel was forced to be the rock for Gretchen. Always saving her from her nightmares. Trying to save her from losing half herself.
Now Ansel is 19, Gretchen 18, their step-mother kicked them out...and Gretchen is still afraid of the woods. So here they are driving across the country to South Carolina. Swapping out the dense forests of their childhood home for the sandy beaches and ocean views, when their care breaks down outside a small town called Live Oak, South Carolina.
That's when it all starts. With no money for a tow or repairs Ansel agrees to help Sophia with odd jobs around her candy shop. But Sophia has secrets. Secrets Ansel can't see through because he is blinded by her beauty. But Gretchen isn't has charmed by the candy maker. And she gets even more cautious when she finds out that girls have gone missing. Vanished, they say...just like her twin sister. After Gretchen tries to put her fears aside, and ventures into the words behind the candy store one night, she finds what she has spent her life scared of. The witch is back. But it's not at all what she thought all these years. It's worse...and only one person can help her. Samuel the "town lunatic", but will he agree to help her?
Relationships build, the twist keep twisting, and it all come down to Gretchen in the end. Will she be able to put an end to this before more girls vanish, or will the trees in the forest forever be a place of terror?
Greta's Q and A's herself:
Were you totally entertained by this book?
Well, there were some slow spots but once you get to the last 100 pages you'll eat that up as fast as you can. It was most awesome.
How did you feel about the characters?
I was just happy that they weren't overweight German kids.
Are you trying to say you got picked on a lot because of this fairytale?
Like uber yeahs!! So, I'm quite picky with retellings of this because you know... as a Greta I have to be.
But there isn't a Greta in Hansel and Gretel.
Ummm...... and your point is?
Did you dig the plot?
To a point. I think there were parts that could have been chopped out because I always think fairytales should be short but I really enjoyed where the book wound up at.
Was there any romance?
Not much. A teeny tiny bit.
This is the second book in the series. Is it ok to read them out of order?
Yes it is because I have yet to read SISTERS RED and I wasn't confused at all.
Who do you think would enjoy this book the most?
I would say girls. I'm not sure if a boy would enjoy this story. There are guns and stuff but I don't think the'd appreciate the first 200 pages.
What is the moral of the story?
Candy is not always as sweet as it tastes.
We don't care what you have to do to get your hands on this book. Paranormal Wastelands is not opposed to suggesting petty theft even. But do whatever it takes to read this. It will pull at your heart, and leave you shaking in your boots long after you turn the last page!