Thursday, July 25, 2013

Book Review: The Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Robin Palmer

The Corner of Bitter and Sweet
By Robin Palmer
Release Date: June 27, 2013
Source: Librarything
Summary: Gilmore Girls meets Postcards from the Edge crossed with L.A. Candy

Sixteen-year-old Annabelle Jacobs never asked to be famous, but as the daughter of Janie Jacobs, one of the biggest TV stars in the world, she is. Growing up is hard enough. Having to do it in public because your mother is a famous actress? Even harder. When your mom crashes and burns after her DUI mug shot is splashed across the internet? Definitely not fun. Then your mom falls for a guy so much younger than she that it would be more appropriate for you to be dating him? That’s just a train wreck waiting to happen.

From Robin Palmer, author of Geek Charming and Wicked Jealous, this is a novel about the most complicated relationship a girl ever has: that with her mother.

Review: One look at the cover of this book and I knew I had to read it. So when a copy arrived in the mail for me, I did a little happy dance, then immediately dove into the story. And wow, the story I got was definitely not what I was expecting at all. 

Annabelle has been taking care of her mom for so long, she can barely remember a time where her mom was the one taking care of her. As the daughter of a famous actress, Annabelle has grown up in the spotlight, trying to live life while hiding the fact that her mom's an alcoholic. So when her mom gets a DUI for driving on the wrong side of the highway, Annabelle needs to find a way to get her mom's life back together before their lives fall apart for good. 

I had no idea this book would be so centered around the relationship between Annabelle and her mother. I ended up really enjoying reading about Annabelle's character though. While her obsession with smelling play-doh and Barbie heads was really weird, her personality was really fun and so easy to connect with. All Annabelle wants is a normal life, yet her mom kind of makes that impossible. It's great seeing how she copes with her mom being pretty much crazy. 

The first half of the book took awhile to get through because it was mostly Annabelle complaining about her mom and how she's self centered and can't take care of herself. But once we get over all that and her mom gets a DUI, things get really interesting and actually start going somewhere. Annabelle's life changes and I really liked seeing her embrace a new life where she becomes friends with the people she least expected to bond with. Oh, and the photography aspect of her life was really cool too. It was great how she dealt with all of her stress and emotions through photography. 

By the end of the book, I really enjoyed reading about Annabelle and her family's journey towards getting their lives together. While the book had a slow start, things finally pick up and there's even a little romance thrown in, which is always a plus for me. And I definitely felt that Gilmore Girls vibe with the whole mother-daughter relationship. Not to mention the added Hollywood aspect made things fun and much more interesting. So overall, The Corner of Bitter and Sweet was a great read that deals with both the heavy, emotional side of family and the fun, crazy side of life in Hollywood.

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