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I Was a Teenage Fairy
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I Was a Teenage Fairy

3.81  ·  Rating details ·  6,310 Ratings  ·  228 Reviews

Maybe Mab was real. Maybe not. Maybe Mab was the fury. Maybe she was the courage. Maybe later on she was the sex . . .

A tiny fairy winging her way through the jasmine-scented L.A. night. A little girl caught in a grown-up glitz-and-glitter world of superstars and supermodels. A too beautiful boy with a secret he can never share . . .

From the author of Weetzie Bat comes a m

Kindle Edition, 192 pages
Published (first published September 25th 1998)
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I Was a Teenage Fairy means a lot to me. I'll never forget when I first discovered it at the library. I must have been somewhere between grades five and eight, but I'm not really sure. I grabbed it from the "young adult" section in the children's room. I remember feeling like I read a scandalous, hidden treasure. The content was a bit too racy for me to even understand at the time, and I think that's what makes this book mean even more to me today.

I eventually purchased the book. I'm not sure h
Kristi-The Book Faery
Feb 18, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fae, harperteen

I read this story on a whim as I'm a lover of all things Fey. To say it wasn't what I expected is an understatement! Ms. Block takes a serious look at a sensitive issue-child molestation and throws a few other wrenches in as well.

Barbie, a child model molested by a photographer at age 11 discovers she has the ability to see Mab, a small fairy that only appears to her. Barbie develops a relationship with Griffin at age 16, both sharing the same experience with the same photographer
Jul 27, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This book was fustrating until the end, then it became slightly less fustrating. I enjoyed the concept of Mab and was disappointed that she was merely a coping mechanism. When I think of Mab, I think of Queen of the Fairies, not a little minor fairy that hangs out in a doll house. I was also upset with the way Barbie and Griffin's emotions were written. It just seemed to skim the surface of their anger, confusion, and numbness. That kind of situation would leave a lot more emotional residue than ...more
Bark's Book Nonsense
This book is about a young girl named Barbie blessed (or cursed) with beauty and forced into modeling by her controlling mom (an ex-model herself, living vicariously through her child). When she's 11 she meets Mab, a sarcastic fairy, who almost reluctantly becomes Barbie's friend. During this same time she's molested by a lecherous photographer. Her mother tells her not to cry, that life is full of problems and she had just better learn to deal with them.

Fast forward 5 years and Barbie's a rail
Mar 02, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: library-book
Wasn't one of my favourite Block books, but it was lovely.
Mar 03, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: you.
transports you to a new world of faeries, bubble gum and happy-ever-afters in teeny bopper LA. one of those books that leaves you different than before.
Jan 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
First book I read by Francesca Lia Block and I fell in love. I was 13 at the time and had never read anything like Block's book. Long before Speak or The Perks of Being a Wallflower came out, Francesca Lia Block was writing about topics that few young adult authors dared to tread. While now it is more commonplace for young adult books to deal with heavy topics such rape, sexual abuse, drug use, and dysfunctional families, when Block was first doing it, she was alone. She was also banned in many ...more
Bree Mclaren
Jan 14, 2010 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Mab was funny I will admit, but the writting was trashy to me. The book was essentially pointless with random sex scenes, it was lik porn hidden behind a fairytale title. I read this book and was going to get rid of it. However, I felt that passing on this trashy story with immature writing technique would be inflicting torturous stupidity on others. So, thinking of the well being of mankind (and lets not forget the children) I threw this exactly where it a dumpster.
Stuti (Turmeric isn't your friend. It will fly your ship
Nowhere near as good as Echo. WHY DO I OWN THIS ONE AND NOT THAT? I want to re-read Echo, dammit!

Sometimes I think Lia Block's words can never be translated into movies and pictures; other times, I can't help but wonder at the factor by which her book's awesomeness would be increased were it made into a movie with music and whispers and fast breaths.
Dec 07, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: finished
this reminds me of the song Lullaby by Shawn Mullins. it has stuck in my mind for years now. it's the kind of book you don't forget
Dec 26, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya, 2005
This was really different. The closest I can think it coming to is Judy Blume with a talking Fairy and more sinister overtones.

Mar 24, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who give a shit, abuse survivors
this is one of the most beautiful things i have ever read. it makes me cry every time. its like it leaves you feeling desperate and sad but in a way where everything will be okay.
Leigha's Little Library
There are parts I like, and parts I did not like. I was confused a lot of the times, but maybe it was the writing style.

I want Mab to be real.
Natalie Jenkins
Sep 26, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Those with the artist's soul.
Shelves: young-adult
I have read this book five times. Five wonderful, fantastical, intoxicating times. It is the story of a girl in her early teens named Barbie, who longs to be as different as possible from the plastic doll that she is named after. It is the story about Griffin - a boy so androgenously beautiful that boys and girls alike fall in love with him. And, of course, it is the story of Mab - a punky pinkie-sized fairy that helps Barbie learn to stand up for herself in a world full of abuse and sadness. Ba ...more
Jul 14, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Summary: Barbie has not lived up to her fellow doll's name or her mother's expectations as a model. She is thrown into the career by the crocodile at a very young age. She is left with a photographer where you are left to assume what happens behind the closed door... It skips to Barbie being 16 and effed up. She is now the most famous model out there but basically drifts through the days in her mind. Barbie likely would not have survived childhood and beyond if it was not for Mab, a tiny and fie ...more
Alicia Scully
Barbie's mother is obsessed with the need for her daughter to have the modeling career that she always wanted. Her mother pushes her so hard that Barbie loses touch with others and awful things happen to her. Barbie's only friend is a fairy named Mab who visits when things get rough. But what is Mab really? Barbie is unsure if Mab is real or if Mab is an imaginary friend but she doesn't care as long as they're together.

This book was interesting because it was unclear how Mab was to be interpret
Allison Floyd
I'm on a Francesca Lia Block kick and rapidly coming to the conclusion that anything she writes is worth reading for the writing alone.

This is a good story and everything--surprise!--turns out fine. I'm still not convinced that being a beautiful butterfly pinned to the corkboard of life is the cruelest fate that can visit a teenage girl, and I'm still not convinced this subject hasn't been done to death, maybe because I was a teenage changeling and have difficulty relating. And I'm really not su
Feb 26, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: juvenile-ya
I read this several years ago and just barely remember it. I do remember thinking that Francesca Lia Blockhas the ability to perfectly attune to the sentiments of your average teenager.

The main character feels put-upon by the world and the struggles she's had to face so Mab (real or imagined) is there to spar with her and encourage her when there is no one else she feels she can trust.

And come on, what teenage girl didn't wish at some point that there was a special fairy or guardian angel to ke
Nov 27, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Teen girls
This little novel reminded me of why I love Francesca Lia Block. It's pretty, short, and full of Los Angeles imagery that I can only get through Block and Janet Fitch. I love how Block's novels always read like children's fantasy stories but are really about things that affect teenagers all over the world- beauty standards, sexuality crises, and being molested as a child, to name a few.

I loved how this book was the perfect mix of sweet and sour and how everyone got a happy ending.
Feb 06, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this in the summer once when I was in either middle school or high school. I really liked this book. It was really different than anything I had ever read, and it really kind of sparked my imagination. The fairy world has never been something I was ever really interested in, but this book for some reason, intrigued me. I loved it when I read it. I probably might revisit it one day just because.
Carrie Sownie
Dec 17, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of those stories that had a large influence on my growth as a person. A perfect book for a teenager or pre-teen, though it does have some very heavy themes.
Elizabeth(The Book Whisperer)
This story was beautiful! It made me cry, it was sad and full of hope at the same time. I highly recommended it!
Lisa Hoang
The author's style was visual and imaginary; something I've never seen before. However, the plot and the characters are, meh. I was expecting a lot from this book and was disappointed. In this book, Barbie slowly became friends with a fairy name Mab. Barbie was hinted that she got molested by a photographer when she was 11. This same thing happened to a guy name Griffin; who didn't do much. The molestation was glossed over and didn't went into more detail; which I hoped it did, then I would unde ...more
Jun 29, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The beginning was horrible. Sorry Francesca but part I really sucked. Part II threw me off so much. Don't get me wrong. By the end I really did like it but the transition between part I and part II didn't exist and the writing styles were completely different. After I got used to the new writing style of part II I was able to get into the book. Although I definitely wouldn't recommend it for kids. Probably for mature ppl. Since there is swearing in it and inappropriate behavior hinted at. But ov ...more
Day Sibley
Part I
Barbie & Mab
We are first introduced to Barbie Markowitz troubled childhood (particularity at the age of eleven) or as Likki Li would sing in her lyrics "the rich kids blues." Barbie life is anything but perfect and grand despite what some might think. She has to put with a demeaning mother, who likes to go by Mrs. Marks instead of Markowitz because she thinks it ruined her career as a model, even though it was washed up a long time ago. Now she expects nothing but perfection as she fo
Catfairy Reads YA



"If Los Angeles is a woman reclining billboard model with collagen-puffed lips and silicone-inflated breasts, a woman in a magenta convertible with heart-shaped sunglasses and cotton candy hair; if Los Angeles is this woman, then the San Fernando Valley is her teenybopper sister."

10 MABTASTIC STARS**********!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

It was such a pleasure to be able to re-read this story! Last time I read this book I was an impressionable 16 year old and once I read the first sentence I was mesm
Jenni Valentine
Apr 24, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I Was a Teenage Fairy by Francesca Lia Block is a story of a young girl named Barbie Marks, who is forced into the glamorous life of modeling at the young age of 11 by her former beauty pageant queen mother whose own career tanked too soon. But, life as her mother’s own personal play doll proves both dangerous and devastating as Barbie becomes subject to molestation by an Ogre photographer, and abandoned by her disapproving father. Yet, with the help of Mab, the pinky-sized pixie, she finds he ...more
Nov 30, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A wonderful story about the human condition. It runs along the same vein as Lovely Bones in the simplistic and symbolic way that deep human emotions are expressed.

The most symbolic thing in the whole book is Mab. The story really centers around how she changes and impacts all these lives, mainly Barbie's. Mab not only "the fury...the courage...[and] later on...the sex" but she is like the voice inside their heads, inside everyone's heads. She is that annoying buzzing in the back of your brain th
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Translation? 2 15 Sep 03, 2014 12:37AM  
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Francesca Lia Block was born in Los Angeles to a poet and a painter, their creativity an obvious influence on her writing. Another influence was her childhood love of Greek mythology and fairy tales.
She has lived in the city all her life, and still resides there with her daughter, Jasmine Angelina (about whom she wrote her book Guarding the Moon), her son Samuel Alexander, and her two dogs: a spr
More about Francesca Lia Block...

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“If Los Angeles is a woman reclining billboard model with collagen-puffed lips and silicone-inflated breasts, a woman in a magenta convertible with heart-shaped sunglasses and cotton candy hair; if Los Angeles is this woman, then the San Fernando Valley is her teenybopper sister. The teenybopper sister snaps bug stretchy pink bubbles over her tongue and checks her lipgloss in the rearview mirror, . . . Teeny plays the radio too loud and bites her nails, wondering if the glitter polish will poison her.” 41 likes
“If Los Angeles is a woman reclining billboard model and the San Fernando Valley is her teenybopper sister, then New York is their cousin. Her hair is dyed autumn red or aubergine or Egyptian henna, depending on her mood. Her skin is pale as frost and she wears beautiful Jil Sander suits and Prada pumps on which she walks faster than a speeding taxi (when it is caught in rush hour, that is). Her lips are some unlikely shade of copper or violet, courtesy of her local MAC drag queen makeup consultant. She is always carrying bags of clothes, bouquets of roses, take-out Chinese containers, or bagels. Museum tags fill her pockets and purses, along with perfume samples and invitations to art gallery openings. When she is walking to work, to ward off bums or psychos, her face resembles the Statue of Liberty, but at home in her candlelit, dove-colored apartment, the stony look fades away and she smiles like the sterling roses she has brought for herself to make up for the fact that she is single and her feet are sore.” 15 likes
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