Sunday 12 July 2009

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Review: Sugar Rush by Julie Burchill

Sugar Rush by Julie BurchillSugar Rush by Julie Burchill - When Kim’s father makes her move from her posh girls school to the school full of trouble makers. Sure she’s not going to fit in for being thought a snob, she’s surprised when Sugar, the most popular girl at school, befriends her. As Sugar leads Kim down the road of alcohol and drugs, Kim experiences things she never has before, including feelings for Sugar. Is she falling for her new best friend?

I’m so glad I never really saw the TV programme before I read this. From what I know of the programme, some of it is different from the book, like Sugar’s race for instance, which is a small but important part of the book. I’m not too sure if I liked this book. It was good, but I got annoyed Kim some of the time when she wasn’t treated too well. I suppose heterosexual or homosexual, though, we all get a little blinded when we really like some, and make mistakes, so I can’t really fault her too much.

It was sad seeing that Kim’s home life wasn’t too great, with her mum leaving home, but I got annoyed with how a lot of the book was of Kim and Sugar doing practically the same things over and over, and Kim agonizing over whether or not her and Sugar were an item. It was just all a little bit samey.

I don’t really know what I expected, but the only thing that makes this lesbian fiction is the two girls, but it’s a story all girls know too well, the only difference was that Sugar wasn’t male. There isn’t really anything on the hardships of being homosexual; there’s no coming out to parents, no having to deal with homophobia, no being worried about what people will think. There is however a few occasions when guys like that the girls are kissing, which Sugar uses to her advantage.

The front cover warns that the book contains explicit content, but I don’t know what was explicit about it. The sex was mentioned, some sexual acts were hinted at, but we never actually got to “see” anything, and there wasn’t any detail. Compared to some other books, this novel is quite tame.

I don’t think Sugar Rush was especially amazing; there wasn’t anything all that special about it. However, it has spiked my interest enough for me to want to pick up the sequel, Sweet, to find out what happens later on to the main characters. Overall, an ok book.

Published: 2004
Publisher: Young Picador Julie Burchill’s Website


  1. Great review Jo. As I've said before, I'm not a fan of this book at all. It just didn't hold my interest. I might watch the show sometime, as I hear it's very good. If you read the sequel, you'll have to let me know if it's better than Sugar Rush!

  2. I've read the sequel but not the first book! From what I remember, it *did* have explicit scenes, but I thought it was notable for the way it seemed to set out to shock, more with Sugar's attitudes to sex than with the sex itself. I think that was Sugar's character, though - she desperately wanted to be shocking at all costs. I thought this gave a different perspective from a lot of the other books you've covered this month - I think Sugar was definitely using sex to gain power.

    Actually, now I come to think of it, she's a bit like Faith in Screwed. I hadn't thought of that before!

    I need to read Sugar Rush sometime, though, as I only know half of the story!

  3. Ohh, that's interesting! I'll definitly check out Sweet now! Thanks, Luisa :)

  4. You're welcome! I should warn you that I found Sugar extremely hard to like, though - which I'm sure is deliberate on the part of the author.

  5. She's not very nice in Sugar Rush either. Not a nice girl.

  6. Thanks for an honest review. I don't think I'll read this book as it doesn't seem very captivating.

  7. You're welcome. It wasn't the most amazing book, but it was ok. I still want to find out what happens in the next novel.

  8. read the book recently because of your review, actually, and I thought it was overdoing things a bit. It uses sex more for the shock factor and not for ~actual purpose... it's like a very pop art book, in the sense that it's pretty and all but not... real.

  9. I can get what you mean! I'm sorry you didn't enjoy it :( I was disappointed with it too.