Saturday, February 25, 2012

Review: Bittersweet by Sarah Ockler

Rating (Out of 5): ~3.5 (Closer to 3 than 4)
Publisher: Simon & Schuster (Simon Pulse/Pulse It)
Spoilers?: No.

Goodreads Synopsis:

 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...

This was not as good as I hoped it would be, but not as bad as it could have been, I guess.
Hudson, the main character, used to be a figure skater, until she (intentionally) blew a competition, making the other people on her team hate her and 'resulting' in her parents divorcing. It's been three years since that happened, but she's still not over it. Her mother owns a restaurant that is going down in business (which bothered me a little, since it seems like they're always busy, but I guess that's not always enough?), and her father lives in another state and seems to always have a different girlfriend. And she's secretly started skating again, along with helping out her high school's hockey team, when she gets a scholarship entry into a skating competition.
I didn't particularly like Hudson. At first I didn't mind her, but then she got annoying later in the book. She got quite self-centered, started not paying attention to her best friend, and was thinking that everything was riding on that competition, when it really... wasn't. She wasn't being very cool to her mother, who also wasn't being very fair or cool back. It really bothered me how she was treating her best friend, though. And she kept blaming herself for the divorce, and would not let that go, which annoyed me. She would just not move on from this stuff.
I did like her relationship with Dani, though (when they weren't fighting), as well as her little brother Bug. But Bug is just adorable. He's too smart for his own good, he doesn't complain about anything, he builds a robot (among other things), and he loves his sister. He's just so sweet.
Oh, and Hudson, aside from her skating abilities, can bake. She makes cupcakes for the restaurant, as well as parties. There are little descriptions at the beginning of each chapter, and they all sound amazing, and immensely tempting.
And the hockey team. The thing that bothered me about them, was that it didn't seem like she really helped them all that much but suddenly they were amazing and winning games. Also, I don't understand how the school let their not really having a coach go on. But aside from that, I really enjoyed the team. I favored Josh over Will, although I didn't see as many bad things about Will as she was warned about. Josh was more fun, and she got along with him better. There was more (happy) chemistry between her and Josh than her and Will.
The climax didn't really get to me, either. I see why she did what she did at the competition, but it just seemed like a waste to me. A lot of that middle-to-end part bothered me, particularly with the way Hudson was acting.
But whatever. It wasn't all bad, and I did enjoy some of it.
[Oh, also, I read this online on Pulse It's website, as they upload about two complete books every month.]

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