Review - Sugar and Spice and all those Lies by Evy Journey

By Carmen, 13 November 2018
My Copy of the Book

Year Published: 2017

Genre: Chick Lit; Suspense; Mystery

‘I’ve kept my focus on the one thing my mother knows best, which she’s passed onto me – cooking.’
- Gina Lambert, Sugar and Spice and all those Lies


Cooking a sumptuous meal is an act of love. An act of grace. An art and passion Gina inherits from her grandfather —a French chef felled by a robber’s bullet.

Raised in a marginal neighborhood, she’s keen to taste life in the world where she’s been chosen to cook. A scintillating world of wealth and privilege, great food, new challenges and fascinating friends.

But beneath this new world, unexpected danger lurks. Gina’s passion for cooking is all she has to help her navigate it.

Amidst her culinary adventures, she befriends the pastry chef, worldly loyal Marcia. She falls in love in different ways with two very different men. Leon is a rich playboy, carefree and complicated but charming, persistent, and true to the demands of his legacy. Serious and idealistic Brent is a lawyer turned brooding detective. Haunted by the many violent crimes he has worked on, he prefers to be alone.

Can the lessons Gina learned about cooking and life help her survive and thrive in this other world of privilege, pleasure, and menace?

About the Author:

Evy Journey, SPR (Self-Publishing Review) Independent Woman Author awardee, writes Women's Fiction, an amorphous category of stories written mostly for women, from a women's point of view, as varied as that is. They can lean towards romance, chick lit, or literary genres.

Evy has a Ph.D. in psychology so her particular brand of women's fiction spins tales about well-drawn characters as they cope with the problems and issues of contemporary life. These stories explore the many faces of love, loss, second chances, and finding one's way. Often, they're laced with a twist of mystery or intrigue.

She's also a wannabe artist, and a flâneuse who wishes she lives in Paris where art is everywhere and people have honed aimless roaming to an art form. She has lived in Paris a few times as a transient.

Connect with the Author:

Facebook: Evy Journey Twitter

Twitter: Evy Journey Twitter

Author Website: Evy Journey Author Website

Buy the Book:

Amazon: Amazon Purchase Link

Editorial Review:

Plot: 4/5

Flow: 3.5/5

Character Development: 4/5

World Building: 3.5/5

Overall: 5/5 Stars

This is a book that builds up in slow stages, and is told from a first person point of view. The prologue entices the reader to keep turning the pages to find out what happened to the protagonist. The main genre of this novel is chick lit, though there is an underlying theme of suspense and mystery, with romance being a background theme. The narrator is someone who is to the point, but also does a lot of internal thinking which is evident throughout the writing.

Since this book builds up in stages, I mistakenly thought at first that this book lacked a little bit, but once the narrator starts engaging in the characters and environment outside her work place and her flat; things start to become more interesting and fuller. There was mystery that surrounded some of the characters, and I get the idea that that was the intention of the author. There were also some ends that were left a little bit open – that wasn’t quite concluded in my mind.

This book also explores the theme of the mysteries of the mind as well as emotions that can be tied to personal experiences as well as how people sometimes act without really thinking, where pent up emotions and unresolved issues can sometimes explode onto other people. Out of the whole book, I feel that the plot and the characters were done the best. The flow and world building was sufficient, though I wouldn’t have minded more exploration in these two areas either.

My Take on the Book:

I personally loved this book – I think it was the plot that did it for me; but I was also intrigued by the mystery of some characters, especially of Leon Barrett and Brent Hanson. I had one or two ideas of how this book could have ended – and one of them did end up being right. Gina Lambert didn’t seem to be a character who made rash decisions. I received a review copy.

Please note that this is an Editorial Review, and I received a review copy from BooksGoSocial (The International Review of Books), though part of this review includes opinions that are my own. If you’re an author, please consider supporting ‘The International Review of Books’, you can find out more information here about them.