Sugar and Spice by Lauren Conrad | Rating: ★★★☆☆
If you're looking for a dishy, quick and non serious read for your bedside table, then you should look no further. Lauren Conrad's L.A. Candy trilogy is fun, dramatic and indulgent. Over the course of two previous books, we've witnessed a great deal of drama catered to young adults with a love for reality television. Lauren Conrad's writing is surprisingly fun and although it isn't the greatest release in young adult literature, it's still a blast from start to finish--so long as you don't take it or yourself too seriously. Sugar and Spice wraps things up nicely for fans and also sets the stage for a spin-off trilogy and proves once again to be the perfect beachy read. It's fictional paperbacks at its dishiest and full of scandals which will appeal to fans of Gossip Girl and The A-List.
Onto the goods. Not a lot of time has passed since five young women's lives were changed upon signing on to film their day-to-day lives for a reality series titled L.A. Candy. Jane, Scarlett, Madison, Gabby and Hannah have reached new levels of fame in different ways and after the explosive ender to the previous installment, Conrad is sure to have more tricks up her sleeves.
And she did! I will say that I feel as though this third and final installment to Jane's story was a bit lackluster compared to the other two. But at the same time, it was fitting. I think Lauren did a nice job of wrapping things up and having a proper send-off for some characters while also having set a foundation for The Fame Game.
A lot of people are keen on weaving Lauren's life with Jane's and matching up each character with who they may--or may not--have been based upon. It's a lot of fun trying to match up the who's who and all that but please, don't let it take away from the actual story. Messy and glamorous as it may be, it's still mostly a fictional release.
I loved seeing a portrayal of reality television like this one because it's very much so right on the nose in accuracy. Trevor is manipulative and dead set on making great television that he forgets that these girls are, well, people and I think he is sourced from quite a few prominent television producers. In a lot of ways, I think Madison is the same way: devious, despicable and passionate about making a name for herself even if it means stepping on everyone to get there.
Fame is such a prominent theme; it equal parts destroys and glamorizes all those pesky Hollywood stereotypes. I liked seeing it because it had a ring of truth to it while still be soapy and over the top. There were so many additions and revelations this go around that it was fun to see karma take its hold when it came down to some things and also thought that the way we were introduced to some other characters. It was all very reminiscent of The Hills and the introduction of someone's, ahem, sister and the drama that followed. I think fans will appreciate that--the even mix of reality and fiction.
The thing about these characters and situations they find themselves in is that they're very dishy and sometimes their actions are shitty. But somehow you are fascinated by them in a non-serious manner. That's my number one thing about the trilogy, they're just a good old fashioned trashy paperback escape and boy is it fucking delightful and frustrating all rolled up in one.
Lauren Conrad keeps readers going on luxury, scandal, cute moments and catty backstabbing plots. L.A. Candy was full of twists and turns, and Sugar and Spice brings on even more. I would be interested in seeing what else Lauren can create in terms of books because her writing, though weak, shows great promise and is rather fun to get into. This isn't going to be for everyone but I had a blast flipping through the pages and can't wait to read its spin-off and to see what shenanigans Madison gets up to in her own series.