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** - Youthjuice


YOUTHJUICE

E.K. SATHUE

**


From Sophia Bannon's first day on the Storytelling team at HEBE, a luxury skincare/wellness company based in New York City's glitziest neighbourhood, it's clear something is deeply amiss. But Sophia, pushing thirty with plenty of skeletons in her closet next to the designer knock-offs, doesn't care. Though she leads an outwardly charmed life, she aches for a deeper meaning to her flat existence - and a cure for her brutal nail-biting habit. She finds it all and more at HEBE, and with Tree Whitestone, HEBE's charismatic, sinister founder and CEO.


Soon Sophia is addicted to her HEBE lifestyle, especially youthjuice, the fatty, soothing moisturiser Tree has selected Sophia to test in top secret. But the unsustainability of HEBE's system is rapidly growing apparent, and Sophia is going to have to decide how far she's willing to go to stay beautiful forever...


MY REVIEW

**


Sophia has just started a job at Hebe, a wellness and beauty company capitalising on all the latest trends. But how far are people willing to go in pursuit of the perfect skin?


I think I may have spoilt the effect of Youthjuice by having finished the brilliant Rouge by Mona Awad recently. They are very similar in terms of concept, but I think Rouge succeeds where Youthjuice sadly falls down. Part of the issue is down to the writing style, although it’s very descriptive in places, there’s a lot of tangents and flashbacks which muddy the story and make it difficult to know what’s happening in places. I also really think the cover of the book ruins the main twist which takes away the impact that could have been gained.


Sophia is a complex character and gets seriously unhinged as the book goes on. I really enjoyed this, but some of the decisions she makes are questionable and I didn’t really understand her motives at times. I found the flashback scenes quite dull and slow-moving and they didn’t really add anything to the plot. There’s also quite a lot of plot-holes, unrealistic scenarios and unanswered questions which spoilt the experience for me, but I don’t want to list them here for fear of spoilers for other readers.


Overall, I think this book doesn’t quite hit the mark as well as other similar novels that are out there, sadly. Thank you to NetGalley, Dialogue and Renegade Books for the chance to read the ARC in exchange for an honest review.


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