Nothing Taste As Good by Claire Hennessy

Nothing tastes as good as this book. I’d booked myself to go and see Claire Hennessy and a couple of other authors talk YA in Brighton Waterstones and wanted to go in armed with the knowledge of their latest books. I wasn’t sure what I was going to expect when I ordered this book, bit I could have never imagine the reaction I ended up having.

Annabel isn’t keen on the idea of being a guardian angel – if you can even call her that – but when her first assignment is former classmate Julia, Annabel completely understands why – Julia is fat. Slowly getting her thoughts across to Julia, Annabel starts to control Julia’s way of thinking and ‘help’ her.

The blurb does this book no justice whatsoever. The guardian angel aspect of the book, although true, makes it appear cheesy from the outside. And this book couldn’t be further from the truth. It meant that it was not what I was expecting at all, and honestly in some aspects I think it made it a better, more surprisingly enjoyable read.

I genuinely adored this book and flew through it so quickly. I think it was because it took it to places that I was not expecting at all. There were numerous times in the book I whispered under my breath and couldn’t quite believe what I was reading, a complete roller coaster of emotions but written in a tactful way. For that I really commend Claire Hennessy and writing.

Although I was aware of the theme when I picked up the book, I was wary of how it may be done. I’d read books that had done it fantastically before, and others that hadn’t quite hit the market so was intrigued how this book would approach it. But I was blown away by how it was actually ended up being portrayed. I felt like it got its teeth into the topics that were addressed, especially as I don’t see very often.

I think what really aided my opinion on this is how Annabel’s voice was so bitter and cynical. Althoigh at first I wasn’t too sure as to how it would pan out, it was actually such a good, and different perspective. She says phrases that are such a taboo, but by doing so I think that is what makes the book so damn effective. There aren’t the typical signs of a book that addresses difficult situations, instead ploughing straight through them. The no bars hold approach is really effective.

There were more than one issue addressed as well. I was blind sided by the storyline with Dermot and helped make this book stand out to me. It ended up tackling other serious subjects as well without brushing them just underneath the rug or sidelining them in favour for others. I loved Mat and his storyline for the same reason. Again it addressed more than one serious issue in this book and is a good reflection of reality that is sometimes bypassed in books like this. Also, the reaction to all the subjects was done so well and none were left feeling insignificant even if they weren’t the main storylines.

It also helped that I loved Claire’s enthusiasm when I listened to her at the talk I went to.

I’m definitely going to read more of her books – such fantastic writing and ideas – and this book has slotted firmly into one of my favourite books.

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*When I went to the wondeful panel that included Claire Hennessy, I got my copy signed!

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