Young Adult Book Reading Challenges discussion

Beauty Queens
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Beauty Queens > Satire & Parody

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message 1: by Angie, YA lovin mod!! (new) - rated it 1 star

Angie | 2687 comments Mod
What did you think of the satire in this book (beauty contestants, reality TV)? Did it work for you? What about the parodies presented (pirates, corporations, bad dictator)? Did you notice that the books also tries to be serious (body image, racial diversity). How do you feel about these mixed into the same novel?

alisonwonderland (Alison) | 30 comments I absolutely loved the satire! I'm all about the empowerment of girls, but I liked the satire more than the "message."

message 3: by Grace (last edited Aug 11, 2014 08:35AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Grace (gdaminato) | 520 comments I felt the satire in the first few chapters was very effective in several ways. In spite of the wild exaggeration, it's very easy to see how the different elements Bray talks about - body image, racial and sexual diversity, women's roles - are viewed in our society and how so many people unwittingly go along with what they THINK most people believe.

By presenting the girls as stereotypes at the beginning, it makes their transformation into real people all the more satisfying as the book develops.

I particularly like Tiara's summary of what the girls experienced on the island (view spoiler) on page 227 of the edition I have.

Grace (gdaminato) | 520 comments Quite a few things were satirized in the book. What do YOU (the readers) think about the way Libba Bray satirizes:
-beauty pageants in general but particularly for very young girls
-sex education (or the lack of meaningful programs in schools)
-reality programs
-product placements
-cosmetic products (Lady 'Stache Off)
-political machinations (secretly supplying weapons to terrorists)
-the role of ethnic participants in beauty pageants (systematized tokenism).

Does the satire make you question your own opinions on those topics?

Stephanie (stephsco) This is one of my very favorite YA books. I ended up buying the audio book after reading it, which is totally hilarious including sound effects for the commercial breaks, which for this book really fit.

I loved the satire of beauty products the most, having grown up obsessed with teen magazines and progressing to beauty and fashion websites. I still like those things, but viewed with a keener eye you can see the manipulation and how damaging it can be. I love the message couched in wicked and funny satire. The author pulled this off so well.

Oscar | 51 comments I like the satire and this included the commercial breaks and silly footnotes. However, the ethnic and just cultural stereotypes of how each girl is supposed to be based on her state is probably what stood out the most for me.

The best way for me to describe the satire is as Manic. I can see how readers would be turned off since it's so over the top and just one thing on top of the other. Bray does go for broke here and I don't know if I could read books like this all the time, but I just like her imagination and the weirdness of this book that I enjoyed it.

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