Sweetly, by Jackson Pearce is another book that I found by cruising the 2.99 deals over on the Nook page. I love fairytales, and even though this one is a little short (clocking in under 300 pages on my Nook), it never dawned on me that this might be a young adult / younger readers novel. I didn’t know that was indeed the classification until I went back to the book page to grab a shot of the cover. We’re going to have to explore this more fully, soon.
Plot in a Jot: What if… Ansel and Gretchen escaped the forest and the witch that stole their sister from them, only to end up on the other side of the country. Facing another witch (this time a sweet one, who makes candies), another forest… and more questions about their own past.
One of the things that stood out in this for me was Gretchen’s struggle for a voice. She calls it making sure she won’t just vanish… But it could just as easily be her voice, her purpose that she’s seeking. Until she is firmly in place within herself, she can’t even say her sister’s name.
But girls have gone missing in the town where they end up, too. All the way across the country, more and more girls are disappearing. Because the town is so small, most assume that the girls (all 17-18) have up and vanished of their own free will.
It’s a great retelling of the Hansel and Gretel story, taking it and spinning it out into a contemporary “what if” scenario.
Bottom Line: 3.5/4 Woohoo’s… because when a girl not only finds her voice but the guts to battle her witch? That’s something to celebrate.