Author: Laura Dave
Page Count: 242
“Was telling a white lie or two on Facebook or Twitter different than lying about everything in your life? Maybe that’s how you lose yourself to it. One small fabricated post at a time. Until your Facebook feed, which looked quite like you when it started, starts to look like someone you kind of know. Maybe someone you’d rather be.”
**I was provided an ARC of this novel by Simon & Schuster for review. In no way does this affect my rating or opinions.**
Sunshine Mackenzie is living the dream—she’s a culinary star with millions of fans, a line of #1 bestselling cookbooks, and a devoted husband happy to support her every endeavor.
And then she gets hacked.
When Sunshine’s secrets are revealed, her fall from grace is catastrophic. She loses the husband, her show, the fans, and her apartment. She’s forced to return to the childhood home—and the estranged sister—she’s tried hard to forget. But what Sunshine does amid the ashes of her own destruction may well save her life.
In a world where celebrity is a careful construct, Hello, Sunshine is a compelling, funny, and evocative novel about what it means to live an authentic life in an inauthentic age.
Hello, Sunshine is the kind of book that portrays life in the digital age in such a brutally honest way that you can’t help but be sucked in by the story. Sunshine Mackenzie is a YouTube cooking star, or at least that’s what all her viewers believe. However, when her Twitter account is hacked, her real life becomes shattered- simply because of her online life.
The story is so addictive for several reasons. One of those being how the story shows a different side of the internet, and how what someone does online can come back to bite you if you’re not careful. Another reason why the story is so addicting is the writing style! Dave uses quite a simplistic style of writing, but that plays to her advantage as it’s the perfect style for the story and characters. It’s a blunt and honest style of writing, which properly reflects the message of the novel.
The final reason of what made this book so addicting is the cast of characters. To be totally honest, it’s easy to not like Sunshine Mackenzie. When all of her secrets are revealed, it’s easy to see where her audience’s feelings of betrayal came from. Yet, you can’t help but feeling sorry for her. Through the scandal that is revealed, she loses just about everything. Sunshine is forced to leave her home, and retreat to her family (whom she is not on the best terms with), but in the end… it may be a good thing.
The story follows Sunshine rebuilding her life, and I loved almost every single word of it. There were a few short moments in the story where I felt as if nothing was truly happening, but they usually passed quickly. One of my favorite aspects of the novel was seeing how Sunshine’s relationships with the other people in her life developed. It was neat to be able to see her interact with people from her life pre-hacking and post-hacking, as it highlighted how much Sunshine herself has changed.
Of course, I can’t not mention the food part of the story. What made Sunshine famous on YoutTube was her cooking show, and I highly enjoyed all of the food references throughout the story. The motif of Sunshine’s classic recipe from her cooking show was also placed well throughout the entire novel, which I loved. Although, this book will likely make you hungry. Just a warning!
Overall, Hello, Sunshine is an addictive page-turning read that raises some interesting questions about the online life we all live. It may be a quick read, but it is definitely a thought provoking read. I definitely recommend reading this lovely story, and it’s perfect for a nice summer book!