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Wondrous Strange (Wondrous Strange #1)

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3.69  ·  Rating details ·  19,590 Ratings  ·  1,446 Reviews
Seventeen-year-old actress Kelley Winslow thinks that playing the role of the fairy queen Titiana in a production of Shakespeare's Midsummer Night's Dream could be her lucky break - if she can pull it off. But when she meets the handsome Sonny Flannery, Kelley has to face the shocking truth that the world of Faeries is all too real - and that she an unwitting part of it. S ...more
Paperback, 327 pages
Published December 2009 by HarperTrophyCanada (first published January 2009)
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jecama It honestly could go either way. Personally, I loved this book (five star rating) and my average rating for most books is about 3.2 stars. But then…moreIt honestly could go either way. Personally, I loved this book (five star rating) and my average rating for most books is about 3.2 stars. But then again, I read this trilogy when I was in 7th or 8th grade, so obviously, my tastes have changed. For a paranormal romance, it is a little simple, but I still love the characters! Instead of buying it, you could try to pick it up at a library to see how it goes?(less)

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Michelle
Feb 09, 2009 rated it did not like it
I have two comments to make on this book:

1. There is a character named Tyffanwy. No, my typing has not, in fact, developed a lisp, it is the truth.

2. During a scene in which a full-grown man is sitting on a little wooden painted pony on a carousel, the following description appears: "Kelley stared at Sonny, who sat easily on his mount, like a knight in shining armor on the back of his charger" (page 181).

And then I threw up, and that was the end of that.
Kristi
Sep 06, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-i-own, own-arc
I think I’ve written and then rewritten this review about a hundred times now! And I know it’s going to come across one way, and that’s just how it’s going to have to be, because I simply cannot write it any other way. So here is goes... fangirly-ness and all. I hope you last through it.

I loved it, I LOVED it. I love it so much I want to marry it. If you are a fan of faerie books, you’ll want to read this one. If you’ve tried faerie books before, but didn’t like them, you’ll want to read this. I
...more
Marcy Jo
Jan 09, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Wondrous Strange is one of those gems that I stumbled across completely by accident. I was in the book store looking to grab the second book in the BIFN series and of course I had to spend some time browsing while I was there. The cover of this book (gorgeous yes?) caught my attention, as did the title. Both of them put me in mind of "Wicked Lovely."

It was too much to resist. Without even reading the inside flap, I grabbed the book and headed to the register. This was a fortuitous happening.

I'
...more
Cait • A Page with a View
I mostly just liked seeing how Queen Mabh, Fennrys Wolf, the fae lord of the Spring Court, and all of the other typical mythological figures + the characters from Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream would fit into the story.

Kelley gets thrown into the role of Queen Titania in A Midsummer Night's Dream and is wandering around Central Park practicing her lines when she runs into a Sonny. He's one of the Janus Guard who protects the mortal realm from escaped fae and there's a portal in the par
...more
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by The Story Siren for TeensReadToo.com

I loved it, I LOVED it. I love it so much I want to marry it. If you are a fan of faerie books, you'll want to read this one. If you've tried faerie books before, but didn't like them, you'll want to read this. If you aren't a fan of faerie books, you'll still want to read it. It's that good.

Incredible characters, incredible writing, incredible plot. It was really just so fantastic, it's hard to find the words to describe it. I never in a million
...more
Alethea A
Dec 21, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: faerie-lovers, romantics, and wannabe princesses everywhere
Recommended to Alethea by: the book cover faerie!
Always choose a book by its cover... ahem.

First, a disclaimer! I liked this book. Despite what I am about to say next.

Definitely better written and far less angsty than Wicked Lovely, somewhat lacking in the descriptive area (esp. in comparison to the Marillier I just read--Wildwood Dancing) but the story ties up nicely and the characters are amusing. It was more humorous than I expected, which was good. It was less dramatic than I expected, which was not so good. (I know, ambiguous, huh? I exp
...more
Audrey
Aug 16, 2008 rated it it was ok
I see that most people seem to have really liked this book, but it really rubbed me the wrong way. It felt very flat and predictable. I would have liked to have had a sense that there was real danger at hand, but the writing lacked the necessary tension to pull off the New York City apocalypse scenario. (See: The City's End Two Centuries of Fantasies, Fears, and Premonitions of New York's Destruction) I generally really enjoy books like this, but it just didn't draw me in. I love the cover art, ...more
Khanh (the meanie)
Apr 04, 2013 rated it it was ok
Unreadably bad.

If I found a fairy horse in my bathtub, I'd call animal control. Come on, you're mature enough to move to NYC on your own and make a living as an actress but you don't know how to call the police?

It probably didn't help the book that the main love interest's name is Sonny, and when I think of Sonny, I think of an annoying, chubby little boy in 4th grade who annoyed the f*** out of me.
Shannon (Giraffe Days)
At seventeen, Kelley Winslow has finished school and moved to New York to pursue a career on the stage. Being promoted to understudy for Titania in A Midsummer Night's Dream is a dream come true; when the actress playing Titania has to pull out and Kelley is given the role, it's so much, so suddenly, she's terrified and messes up all her lines. She finds a quiet spot in Central Park to practice, and it's there that she meets Sonny Flannery.

Sonny is a stolen child in Auberon's Fae realm, now serv
...more
Amelia, the pragmatic idealist
Wondrous Strange to me offered a very clever, very interesting amount of mythology and folklore to explain the faerie world. This is particularly interesting because the entire story takes place in New York City - the "Otherworld," as it is known, is only referenced.
There's something in particular that I found really neat: So often in faerie fiction, you hear the same things over and over: Seelie/Unseelie, Winter & Summer Courts. Well, those concepts are all here, but Livingston brings more
...more
Laurel
*Slight spoilers*

I write this review as I stare at my Pretty Pretty Princess board game.

Why?


Because this book makes me wish I was a ginger fairy princess myself, so that I could take Kelley's place and think rationally rather than try to save a half-ton horse, especially when it's a kelpie and trying to kill me so it can eat me. Or try to prevent hypothermia by taking the hottest shower ever. THAT'LL help me...

I got to page 80 something, and I just couldn't kid myself, I was bored out of my fuck
...more
Anne Osterlund
Apr 28, 2011 rated it really liked it
Kelley is an actress. Well, actually more of an understudy/glorified stagehand, but when the person playing the faerie queen breaks an ankle it’s . . . show time! Or more accurately time for Kelley to forget half her lines and stomp off to Central Park for some serious rehearsal AKA self-reproachment.

Which results in . . .
A. Kelley receiving a rose from “the mysterious good-looking guy” (whose real name is Sonny, and who is actually a changeling human in charge of guarding the gate to faerie and
...more
Cecelia
Apr 18, 2009 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kimberly Derting
Dec 22, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I got this one for Christmas...YAY!!!
Heather
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jilly
Jul 30, 2014 rated it really liked it
Being a Shakespeare lover would help with this book. That's not really me. I mean, I like Midsummer Night's Dream, but actors, especially theater people who do Shakespeare are annoying as hell. I was born and raised in L.A., every other person I knew in my twenties was an actor. Most of them are fine, unless they are in character, but this brand, the Renaissance festival folks...ugh!

My next gripe is the love interest guy's first name is Sonny. Really? My dog's name is Sunny - a big yellow lab. I
...more
Mike (the Paladin)
The rating is a gift, I know it's a book certain people will really enjoy. I didn't finish it. I didn't care for the way it was written, the tone nor the way the story was laid out. I suppose it might be that I'm just too old, too male, and too well read.

Please enjoy this if it's your cup of tea...or fairy wine. It's not mine. I have a long to be read list and I really wasn't enjoying this, so please my "friends" who have enjoyed this series, don't hold it against me...I just didn't care for it
...more
Amy
Feb 25, 2010 rated it did not like it
this book was hilarious but in a bad way. intrigued me because it was a modern take on shakespeare's a midsummer night's dream but it was so poorly written and executed that it had me laughing at it's sheer stupidity. ashamed to say i finished it. dialogue could've been written by a 12 year old.
Serena (Cioccolato e Libri)
Non potevo scegliere un titolo migliore di "Wondrous Strange" per affrontare il mio periodo di ritorno al passato, a quando leggevo i meravigliosi fantasy della collana Lain della Fazi.
Questo libro mi è piaciuto tantissimo, partendo dai personaggi per poi arrivare a tutta la trama. Ho amato in particolar modo i continui riferimenti a Shakespeare e Sonny, il protagonista maschile.
Ci sono dei libri che semplicemente, con poche pretese, hanno una struttura fatta molto bene e riescono a coinvolgere
...more
Reading Sarah
Aug 23, 2009 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Erica (daydreamer)
Wow. This book was really good. Lesley did an incredible job at creating a magical fay story based on a Midsummer Night’s Dream. It was fantastic. The writing was beautifully done- it pulled me in from the beginning. I had a hard time putting the book down.

The characters were amazing. Kelley was perfect. I loved that she would not believe Sonny about what he was trying to tell her. She would have none of it, convinced that Sonny was stalking her, which any woman in her right mind would think abo
...more
Katie
Jan 23, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: books-i-own
Wondrous Strange was a magical mix of fun and adventure. With every faerie story I’ve read, it’s either been strictly intense or dolled up, but I love that Lesley Livingston found a happy medium.

Kelley is probably one of my favorite literary characters of all time. She’s snarky, sarcastic and strong, and she doesn’t let the sudden intrusion of powerful faeries into her life get her down. Her stubborn but highly entertaining attitude stayed in check throughout the entire novel, and I loved every
...more
The UHQ Nasanta
It had such promise, and it disappointed.

The premise intrigued, but the writing was flat and immature. The characters were two dimensional, not well developed, and did not grow. Questions were left unanswered, certain plot developments were glossed over, and there was a serious lack of character introspection, which would have given the book more depth.

The romance was poorly written. It seemed as if one moment they are somewhat friendly strangers, and the next in love. It also suffered from a
...more
Susan
Aug 11, 2011 rated it really liked it
WONDROUS STRANGE is one of those books you read on a crisp fall day--and seeing as fall has already fallen here in Deutschland, it was the perfect story to fill my YA/paranormal/fantasy cravings.

I loved Kelley's character. She's spunky, funny, and strong--things I always look for in a heroine. The way the Shakespeare elements were woven in with the Faerie elements was fantastic. I mean, *spoiler!!* having Puck actually be Puck? Genius!

And oooooh, I loved the Queen Mabh element. Just imagining he
...more
Alexandria
Jan 23, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone who likes fairytales, romance, and the paranormal
Recommended to Alexandria by: I stumbled across it in Barnes N Noble
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Tammie
I thoroughly enjoyed reading Wondrous Strange. The main character Kelly was brave and spunky, but not so much so that she lost her femininity. It was romantic without being over the top and it had an element of innocence to it that I loved. There was also humor in there that was a nice surprise. As soon as she found the horse in her bathroom I was hooked. I also loved how A Midsummer Night’s Dream was woven into the plot.
Arsnoctis
Non mi fa piacere vedere un'unica storia divisa in tre volumi senza apparente motivo e questo è proprio il caso della trilogia di Wondrous strange. Ciò premesso: la prosa della Livingston è buona, forse un po' troppo ricca di orpelli qua e là, ma buona.

Il punto di forza di questa serie sono indubbiamente i suoi personaggi che risultano essere credibili e di gradevole lettura, ma veniamo alla nota dolente da parte mia: la trama.

Il sistema magico/fantasy funziona bene e, come scrivevo poco fa, i
...more
Ariel
Jun 09, 2017 rated it it was ok
No bueno.
I really didn't like this book. I went into it thinking this was actually going to be enjoyable BUT I'm not sure where it went wrong. It took such a long time for the story to actually get going that I trailed off a bit. Kelley was such an inconsistent character. She had attitude but then was incredibly insecure. She tried to be a badass but failed miserably. I didn't like her. I didn't like any of these characters. Even the idea that she was stolen because Sonny was stolen was this we
...more
Malene
"Det gale bæst svingede sit bisonstore hoved i Kelleys retning og fæstnede sine røde øjne på hende. De savlende kæber åbnede sig ufatteligt meget..."

Jeg elsker feuniverset og selvom jeg ikke var helt væk i 'En Skærsommernatsdrøm', så nyder jeg virkelig at læse historier, der er inspireret af Shakespeares stykke.
Historien om Kelley er ingen undtagelse - igen mødtes jeg med Oberon, Titiana, Puk og alle dem omkring dem, hvilket var et interessant og underholdende gensyn.

I bogen følger vi skiftevi
...more
Marija
Mar 17, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: ya-mg, fantasy-sci-fi
*3.5 stars*

Not quite sure how to rate this book. On the one hand it’s better than some of the young adult fantasies that I gave three stars to, but it’s not as good as some of the books I gave four stars. It’s a cute book, a good light read…a simple story not too overcomplicated with crazy situations, the focus is more on character development. In that way it reminds me of the old L.J. Smith novels.

There is the Shakespeare connection here as well. Besides the obvious connection, that being Kell
...more
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Wondrous Strange (3 books)
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Share This Book

“Kelley. Your name is Kelley, isn't it?" He didn't wait for her confirmation. "Yes. Well. Tell me...that bit just now...was that from Dante's Inferno?"
Uh...no," Kelley stammered. Her face felt hot.
Really?"
I'm in for it.
Are you sure?" he continued. "Because it most certainly wasn't from this play. And it bloody well sounded like hell.”
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“Believe me, Kelley. If I’m not…it’s because I’m already dead.” He stroked her hair, and she could feel his breath warm on her forehead, like a kiss. “Because anyone that would seek to hurt you would have to kill me first.” 52 likes
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