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Member Reviews

I love Sarah Crossan's work so when I saw that I could review an extract from Toffee I was so happy. Crossan has a way with verse and how she forms in that is just magic. It is easy to read and packs a punch. I basically ate this extract up. It was so good. I think that Sarah Crossan narrates the story, it takes the action off in a specific way that I  can't wait to see where it goes. It also left on a little bit of a cliffhanger so I can't wait to read the rest of the story to see where it goes.
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Great as always, cant wait to read the full things, brings a real spotlight to alzheimers and relationships between young and old.
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Written in verse, this book is very different to anything I have read before.. This extract has certainly left me wanting more and I’m full of questions and assumptions...who knows whether the full novel will prove me write or not! I wonder who Marla is and whether she is suffering from Dementia, who was Toffee to Marla? And what was going on with Allison’s father? I’m sure there’s much more to be found out about all of these.

This short extract has left me keen to read the whole book and I’m sure I would quickly get used to Crossan’s wringing style. 

I received an extract of this book from the publishers via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review
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I'm gonna say this now - I think just sending out the extract was a mistake. In my opinion, they should have sent out the whole book. This extract confused me SO. MUCH. And not in a good way. The chapters, in the extract at least, are so short and all over the place that nothing seems to add up. Yes, the extract left me with question: How does she know the random lady? How did she get her nickname of Toffee? Why does her dad come across like such a dick? How did she get the burn that she keeps mentioning?

But, honestly. The extract didn't leave me wanting answers to any of those questions. Once I finished it, I was just left feeling 'Meh'. Maybe if I'd have read the whole thing, I'd have enjoyed it more. But, honestly, based on this extract alone, I won't be reading the book as a whole. Also, it may just have been in the extract that NetGalley sent out, but Jesus Christ it's one of my biggest pet peeves - USE SPEECH MARKS!!!!!
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Thank you to NetGalley for providing me with this ARC. 
I found this extract quite quick and very enjoyable to read. I was immediately encapsulated by Allison and Marla's story. I loved the poetic format and structure that their story is told through. I will certainly be purchasing this book and from just a few pages, I was enthralled.
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I absolutely adore Sarah Crossan’s novels. Whenever a new one comes out you can guarantee it is on my ‘want to read’ list. The same can be said about Toffee. It was one of those books that I didn’t want to know anything about I just wanted to dive in because I know that with a Sarah Crossan novel I will be presented with challenging topics in a moving way.

Toffee did not disappoint.

It is a book about relationships. Not the love kind, but more the familial or the platonic kind. The story follows Allison, a runaway who is desperate to seek solace in the one person who has ever shown her kindness, however, when she ends up alone and penniless in an unknown area Allison forms a friendship with Marla. The only problem is that Marla has dementia and doesn’t remember Allison from one day to the next.

Crossan deals with issues such as abuse, broken families, loneliness, and mental health in such a caring, non-judgemental way. She has a magical ability to make her characters likable even when we question what they are doing. She is meticulous in her characterisation and I absolutely adore her books, Toffee included.

Toffee by Sarah Crossan is available now.

For more information regarding Sarah Crossan (@SarahCrossan) please visit her Twitter page.

For more information regarding Bloomsbury Publishing (@BloomsburyBooks) please visit www.bloomsbury.com.
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A story is that is ‘toffee’, sweet, yet hard to chew. The fast pace perspective shift in time let’s you into the brutality of Allie’s life. And the leaves you waiting to see how she fairs as Toffee. Brutally beautiful. Read and read again.
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I very much enjoyed this. I've never given a review on such a short extract though. I do like Sarah Crossan as an author and have read other verse novels by her, so I am fairly confident that Toffee continues in the same vein it begins in. Crossan is good at dealing with difficult, sensitive topics and her teenage voice seems authentic to me. This deals with domestic abuse and in the section  I read it was handled both powerfully and thoughtfully. I would definitely read the rest.
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I'm still very much on the fence about how I feel about stories witten in verse. I often struggle to connect to the words more then I would with a book written in the 'normal way'. I'm very conflicted about 'Toffee', on one hand the writing style had me thinking this book wouldn't be for me but after finishing reading the extract I wanted to know what happened next. I find the premise very intriguing, I don't come across very many books that deal with dementia and memory loss in older characters. So even though I'm not the biggest fan of books written in verse, I could still see myself enjoying this book to see how the character's relationship develops and how Marla's condition effects Allison.
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This rating is of an extract of Sarah Crossan's novel Toffee and is only based on the short amount I read. I don't normally chose to review extracts but I loved the first book I read by this author, Moonrise. 

After reading Toffee I was disappointed that I was only reading an extract because I really enjoyed the bit I read. 

Toffee was a pleasant read and one I enjoyed from the first paragraph. 

"Her name is Marla, and to her I am Toffee, though my parents named me Allison."

The part of the extract that made me want to read more was this: 

"This is not my home. This is not my room. This is not my bed. 

I am not who I say I am. Marla isn't who she thinks she is. I am a girl trying to forget. Marla is a woman trying to remember. 

Sometimes I am sad. Sometimes she is angry. And yet. 

Here in this house, I am so much happier than I have ever been." 

Allison is a runaway from an abusive home. She run away to try to find someone she once knew and ends up taking shelter in a shed. The next morning she accidentally finds herself face to face with Marla. From the little I read of this book I think there will be an interesting dynamic between the two of them. 

A great idea for a book.
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Brief thoughts on the extract of Toffee:

I always enjoy Crossan's non-prose style, but it took a little while to hear the separate voices here. By the end of the extract, I did want to continue and find out how the two characters would interact and what their stories were.

There are going to be 'issues' covered here as always, and Crossan is an assured and capable writer, the two very different characters are going to be a fascinating pair to watch forming a relationship.

Wish I could have read the whole thing!
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This sampler was a perfect set up for the story between Allison and Marla. I wish this had been a full arc as I really liked what I read and thought that there was a lot of promise with this. This is definitely one I will pick up when released!
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Absolutely intriguing and brilliant extract,can’t wait to read the rest of the book.
Particularly loved the style of writing and the introduction to the characters,Toffee and Marla.
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This was such an original book and due to that, it was right up my street. It's a unique read which uses a poetic format and structure to tell the profoundly moving story of Allison and Marla whose paths cross inexplicably and they grow to become close despite the substantial age gap between them. Two different generations finding comfort in one another was heart-warming and as the story highlights issues both generations go experience it was topical, thought-provoking and intensely compelling. I simply can't wait to read the entirety of it. 

The award-winning and critically acclaimed Ms Crossan is a masterfully storyteller and this verse novel has all the hallmarks of a tour de force. You can tell exactly how talented she is even from this short excerpt. An emotional, visceral and all-powerful tale that explores issues of mental health, illness, the fallibility of memory, the importance of support, friendship, comfort and the family ties that bind us all. Superb. Many thanks to Bloomsbury Publishing for an ARC.
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The absolute worst thing about extracts is that I WANT THE REST OF THE BOOK RIGHT NOW!
Sarah Crossan's writing is one of my favourites and I NEED THIS BOOK
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A beautiful and heartbreaking extract from what promises to be another powerful book from Sarah Crossan, Toffee is the story of a young runaway who finds herself hiding out it the home of an elderly woman with dementia who mistakes her for an old friend. From the short extract I can see the beautiful use of language I have come to expect from this author, and the beginnings of an intriguing story and relationship. I look forward to reading more when the book is released.
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I love Sarah Crossan's style of writing in verse. I allows the story to flow really well. This extract has wet my appetite to read the full book.
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"I like the idea of being 
sweet and hard,
A girl with a name for people to chew on."

This is a really wonderful extract and I can't wait to have an opportunity to read the book in its entirety. 

Toffee is a girl trying to run away from her past when she comes across a woman who can't remember her own. Toffee might look sweet, but this this tale has enough bitterness and spice to keep things interesting.

Told in a poetic, beautiful and entirely captivating way, the plot moves swiftly along. I'm hooked! 

Many thanks to NetGalley, Bloomsbury Publishing and Sarah Crossan for a copy of this extract.
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Wow, what a start. So keen to read the rest of the book. Will definitely buy it for my students. I’ll buy anything by Sarah Crossan and I have a boys school library, she is always a hit. Can’t wait to read the whole book.
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Oh wow! I seriously need more of this. I can not wait to get a hold of a full copy now.  Crossan always manages to pull you in, keep you in...
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