The only problem with reading the first of a series of thriller novels, KNOWING that you're reading the first of a series of thriller novels is that y...moreThe only problem with reading the first of a series of thriller novels, KNOWING that you're reading the first of a series of thriller novels is that you know that the MC is going to survive anything that's thrown at him. Kinda takes the impact out of the scenes. HOWEVER, that's countered by Baldacci's willingness to throw everyone else under the bus and kill off any of his other characters. You know that Stone's going to survive, but that's all that's granted. I also liked that the media and politics were portrayed in such a way that I could agree with it, without it getting preachy.(less)
Beauty Queens is a wonderful story about how the Liberal Agenda triumphs over Crass Commercialism Ideals. It's about Woman Power and Being Yourself, n...moreBeauty Queens is a wonderful story about how the Liberal Agenda triumphs over Crass Commercialism Ideals. It's about Woman Power and Being Yourself, no matter who thinks you should be someone else. It's about not falling into the self-hate trap that the media so desperately wants to sell young women. It is a book that every young woman should read.
And then promptly read just about any newspaper, eat a bag of sodium, and realize that all of the ideals Bray is spooning into you, the real world is trying to rip away from you.
Books like this is at once a refreshing change and a frustrating slap in the face. It's refreshing to read something that says "it's okay to be you, for whatever value of you it is." But at the same time, it's frustrating to have all of these ideals pitted so obviously against "the opposition." Not all conservatives are hypocritical. Not all corporations are evil. And while we're doing our best to allow our girls to be all they can be, lets not make men into The Bad Guy, okay?
This book was wittily and wonderfully written. The themes were deep but covered with enough humor that it tasted good going down. The characters, who I didn't want to like, made me love them, even for their shallow, not-as-clever-as-me flaws. All in all, I think it's a wonderful, powerful book.
It just makes me want to read something that's pro-conservative now, in an effort to not be a hypocrite.(less)