by Libba Bray
A plane full of Teen Dream beauty queens has crashed into a seemingly-deserted island. With chaperons dead and only what survived the crash to sustain them, these beauty queens must learn to rely on each other to survive – and keep up that perfect tan.
Short summary, I know. But too much more and we’re getting into spoiler territory (Although, apparently, spoilers aren’t that big of a deal). Also, if I say too much more, the description would be half a page long. Because, in typical awesome Libba Bray snarky fashion, Beauty Queens is chock full of twists, turns and surprises of both the good and bad variety.
Much like her Printz Award winner, Going Bovine, Bray’s newest is satire, brimming with pop culture surprises and snarky opinions on everything from Elvis to pirates. The bonus in BQ, though, is we get footnotes. We all know how I feel about footnotes in fiction. Nothing can go wrong there.
Just like there are numerous plot twists, there are also a number of issues Bray tackles through her multiple characters. Largely, though, the book deals with feminism and, really, what makes a woman strong and successful. It goes without saying that Bray, as usual, tackles these issues with both humor and tenderness.
I mentioned the multiple characters and, while I understand the benefit on focusing on all of them, I think having so many was a touch confusing. A few of the lesser characters I almost completely wrote off because I couldn’t keep track of them. (Bray did help with this by calling characters by both their states and their names – I’m not sure why that was useful, but it was.)
There were a few characters that really stood out for me. Most of my favorites were insane, as usual, and had me laughing so loud that my cat jumped off the bed terrified.
While I didn’t enjoy this one as much as Going Bovine, I found Bray’s venture back into pop culture satire absolutely delightful and I cannot wait for the next one to come out. (No pressure or anything, Libba!)
Where this book came from: My library!