Confession, I love all things prep: ivy league schools, prep schools, uniforms, Ralph Lauren, weekends in the Hamptons, you name it. Have I ever reall...moreConfession, I love all things prep: ivy league schools, prep schools, uniforms, Ralph Lauren, weekends in the Hamptons, you name it. Have I ever really experienced those things, no. That’s why I read books like this. I liked this book A LOT better than I did Prep by Curtis Sittenfeld. I had picked Prep up expecting to read what I had gotten in The Disreputable History, but was sorely disappointed (and a little scandalized). Not until I read The Disreputable History did I finally get what I was hoping to out of a school about boarding schools and those that reside there. Make sense? Frankie is an amazing character. Truly fantastic! The book opens up with her writing a letter to the headmaster taking blame for all of the things that went wrong. Hilarious! I was grabbed from that moment onward.
The other characters were good fun as well. This isn’t a cookie-cutter book. Without giving too much away, I really liked how many twists were thrown in. At first, things just seem like they are going to go along just like they do at any other prep school, but this one goes deeper. As you go deeper, you get to know Frankie better and sympathize with her hopes and dreams. Yes, how she carries things out is slightly criminal, but it’s still amusing. I wish that I had enough brains and guts to be as much of a prankster as Frankie is.
The writing style sometimes threw me off. There were some parts that were written in ways that I’m not really used to; it’s hard to explain. However, this doesn’t really detract from the story, and I was able to get into the flow of things fairly fast.
I hope Lockhart doesn’t stop here and keeps telling us about Frankie’s adventures in Junior and Senior years. I’ll definitely being trying some of her other stuff though, just because she is such a great story teller. (less)
So, I liked this book, I did, but I didn't love it.
To start off, the pre-released cover of a girl in a purple dress with some space scene behind her had me thinking this was going to be kind of sci-fi, and then the newer covers had me confused because they had nothing to do with my original impression, which is fine, but I just didn't know which direction it was all going to head. As many have said before me, the newer covers match the book better!
It's set in a kind of desert, Arabian world and I actually found myself wishing to ride a camel and smell exotic spices. This has been a long dream of mine, but I abhor intense sunlight. Moving on...
What I found most interesting about this book was that it was descriptive, yet direct. Ms. Carson doesn't waste words going into long winded details about things. Actually, she's a little abrupt and that took me some getting used to at first, but she was still able to convey the beauty of the world and the people in it.
Another thing I liked about this book was that the protagonist isn't a skinny waif. I myself have some meat on my bones so the fact that Elisa liked to eat (though a little too much sometimes) helped me relate to her more.
I love transformational books where the main character learns to become stronger and finds more about themselves. This book had that for sure. However, towards the end... I don't know, it just worked a little too easily.
Religion is a big part of this book, but it wasn't overbearing or preachy. Bravo Ms. Carson!
So, why 3 1/2 stars as opposed to higher? I don't know... it's kind of hard to put into words but I didn't find myself sitting on the edge of my seat. I wanted to know what happened, and I knew not everyone would survive but....I was ok with that. I wish I could have been little bit more heartbroken about what happened towards the end, but I wasn't *spoiler down below*.
Overall, a good read and I'll continue the series, but not as intense as I was hoping for.
*spoiler coming up!*
*spoiler spoiler spoiler*
*spoiler- so, I read somewhere, I think an author interview, where she said that after she decided to kill someone everything started to work out better. This was before I had read the book so when I started it I was looking for who would die. Enter Humberto. I liked the kid, and I was glad he appreciated Elisa for who she was, but I didn't feel he was going to be able to grow with her as the leader she would need to be and so....I knew he was going to die. Thus, I wasn't totally as into him and I think the author wanted us to be and so when he died I was kind of like...yup, saw that coming. I wasn't expecting Alejandro to die as well so now I'm left looking for a new romance aspect (I HAVE to have me some romance in the books I read) so my thoughts are straying towards the captain of the guards...forgot his name.....what are your thoughts? spoiler*(less)