InkBitten's Reviews > Beauty Queens

Beauty Queens by Libba Bray
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F_50x66
's review
Jan 01, 12

bookshelves: sarah
Read in July, 2011

Judged by a Cover: How do I actually like this?
I hate stock photos. I hate headless people. I hate lipstick and beauty pageants. Yet somehow, I adore this cover. Maybe it's because the person isn't the focus in the photo. She's WAY to close to the camera to really admire/ hate her. Maybe it's because lipstick is being used for a practical purpose such as hitting people with (must do research on using lipstick tubes as bullets.) Or maybe it's because this cover actually shows what's in the book. It's a novel about a bunch of brainless beauties lying on a beach. Still, it would be interesting to brandish this at school and see the looks people gave me......

What's Up?
The plot is basic. A bunch of pageant girls get wrecked on an island and learn the meaning of true beauty and hidden problems. I don't mean to down play it as it works out really well. The girls are funny, the characters are well developed, and most of the girls have brains and secrets. I think that's a big thing with beauty queens. Pageants stereotype girls, and crush them down into acting dumb, docile, and stupid(can you tell I'm a feminist yet?). No one actually wonders why these girls would ever parade around wearing almost nothing. the book did a good job explaining why each of the girls do this(and no, girls don't do pageants just because they enjoy having hair ripped off their body and foreign chemicals sprayed on their skin.)


Characters: 4

Don't get me wrong, loved the main characters. These are tough, strong girls who aren't afraid(by the end of the book) to stand up to insane people who are holding exploding bikini wax. However, this book dealt with a lot of hot button issues, such as homosexuality, trans-genderism, extra-martial sex, and of course, stereotyping pageant girls. I can respect the girls views on the topics, and of course cheer them on, but I don't agree with a lot of what happens. Also, with so many main characters, it became hard to keep track of who was who. I wouldn't mind saying hi, but that's probably about as far as our conversation would go.

Romance: 7
Okay, Libba Bray intended to turn this into a young adult novel, so halfway through the book SEXY BRITTISH PIRATES show up. Now, some of the are absolute jerks, so I cant give it a 10, but there were a couple of romances romances that had me absolutely squeeing with delight. And then someone started quoting classic literature............

Bonus Features: Pirates

Because, seriously, what's better than reading about hot pirates and beautiful, blushing, beauty queens in bikinis on a beach.

Feminism

This one is sort of a no brainer. You are reading a blog set up by a group of girls who are planning on conquering the world one day. It was refreshing to read a book that for once got the notion of feminism right. It really isn't about foreswearing men and make up like some people scew it to be. I loved reading about the girl power in this novel while still watching them be able to find love. It was nice to see a book that understood that in a perfect relationship, each partner should be able to stand on their own.

Beauty Pagents

First, I'd like to clear things up. I have, nor ever will compete in a pagent. My idea of style in something that won't get ruined when a newborn I babysit for drools on it. Still, I've seen a lot of good movies and books that involve beauty pagents. Namely, Miss Congeniality (which now occurs to me is more anti-beauty pagents with explosives thrown in for good measure.) Plus, I think it reveals alot about us as a society. Basicaly it show that we value beauty over brains, and that it's perfectly fine to over sexualize young girls. Maybe a better tiltle for this would be anti-beauty pagents

Final Flavor: Delicious french fries
This book is really a perfect beach read. What with a blend of romance, mystery, satire, and hilarity, it was just as good as it initially looked.Its one of those books that you wouldn't mind buying to read over, and over, and over again. Just don't go near the seagulls.

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