A huge Thank You to Simon & Schuster Canada, via Netgalley, for allowing me to read Stay Sweet by Siobhan Vivian in exchange for an honest review.
Summer in Sand Lake isn’t complete without a trip to Meade Creamery—the local ice cream stand founded in 1944 by Molly Meade who started making ice cream to cheer up her lovesick girlfriends while all the boys were away at war. Since then, the stand has been owned and managed exclusively by local girls, who inevitably become the best of friends. Seventeen-year-old Amelia and her best friend Cate have worked at the stand every summer for the past three years, and Amelia is “Head Girl” at the stand this summer. When Molly passes away before Amelia even has her first day in charge, Amelia isn’t sure that the stand can go on. That is, until Molly’s grandnephew Grady arrives and asks Amelia to stay on to help continue the business…but Grady’s got some changes in mind…
Publication Date: April 24, 2018.
My thoughts on Stay Sweet prior to sitting down and reading the book are that even though the premise for Stay Sweet is interesting, I wanted to keep my expectations low. I thought that Stay Sweet would be a story overflowing with fluff. Kind of like a dreamy summer read. Instead, Stay Sweet was more down-to-earth, more realistic. Amelia has graduated high school, and this summer, she’ll be working at the Meade Creamery before she’s off to college.
Molly Meade dying was something that I don’t think ever crossed Amelia’s mind. However, when Molly is found dead, Amelia’s world seems to come down around her. From then on, the book has it’s high’s and lows.
I honestly tried to keep my expectations of Stay Sweet low. I didn’t want to be disappointed by the end of the story. However, the more and more I put off reading Stay Sweet….the higher my expectations became. So while I did get a reality check while reading this book, I can say that I enjoyed almost every minute of Amelia’s story.
The beginning of the story was cute, and the prologue really set the theme for what the Meade Creamery ice cream stand stands for. Which is a moving part of the story!
Reading Stay Sweet made me want to go out and buy an ice cream maker and make ice cream!! When I read Stay Sweet, I had to take breaks in between, just because I was so immersed in the story and Amelia’s feelings would become my own. Which is a compliment to Vivian’s writing style, but a downer for me, since Amelia’s anxiety and stress became my own stress until I could separate myself from the story.
I actually really enjoyed Amelia’s point of view. I enjoyed getting to know Amelia’s character and getting to know her fears, how she deals with stress, and the likes of friendship with Cate.
I found that Amelia and Cate’s friendship was incredibly realistic, and I myself did not like Cate at some points, but that is just me. Something about Cate feels off, and I cant describe it. Like, if Cate were a person in real life that I knew, I’d probably be distant towards her.
For the few first chapters, I think until chapter 8, I was waiting for the other shoe to drop. I’m glad to say that the shoe finally drops in the 9th chapter.
Something that I absolutely loved was the fact that while there is some romance in Stay Sweet, it’s not the main plot of the story. The romance doesn’t take a huge focus of Amelia’s life. Nor does she immediately become jealous and severely attached to the love interest. I’ve got to say though, I called it when I thought that Amelia and her love interest would be a thing.
Overall, I really wanted to end up giving Stay Sweet 5 stars. While I genuinely enjoyed it, the story was somewhat of a miss for me.
I was actually really looking forward to reading Stay Sweet. I’ll admit that this book would have been better, had I not gotten my hopes up.
I like what happened in the story: Amelia grew into her own skin + found out what she wants to do in college, and Amelia doesn’t become overly attached to her love interest (saw that coming miles away).
I give Stay Sweet 3 stars.