The fifty contestants in the Miss Teen Dream pageant thought this was going to be a fun trip to the beach, where they could parade in their state-appropriate costumes and compete in front of the cameras. But sadly, their airplane had another idea crashing on a desert island and leaving the survivors stranded with little food, little water, and practically no eyeliner.
What’s a beauty queen to do? Continue to practice for the talent portion of the program–or wrestle snakes to the ground? Get a perfect tan–or learn to run wild? And what should happen when the sexy pirates show up?
Welcome to the heart of non-exfoliated darkness. Your tour guide? None other than Libba Bray, the hilarious, sensational, Printz Award-winning author of A Great and Terrible Beauty and Going Bovine. The result is a novel that will make you laugh, make you think, and make you never see beauty the same way again
Okay, first of all, can I just say that this is one of my favorite covers to date? Look at that! Lipstick lined up the same way army men wear bullets, crossed with a pageant sash? Perfection.
I had heard so much about Libba Bray’s Beauty Queens, about a plane full of teenaged pageant contestants who crash on an island, that I think maybe I built it up unfairly in my mind. Don’t get me wrong: it was a great book, full of humor, great messages, a really unique plot, and really unique subplot.
The beginning was well-written but failed to draw me in. I kept reading strictly because of the humor and the fact that I had heard such amazing things about this book, but in the beginning, unfortunately since all we know about these girls are that they’re beauty pageant contestants, I just didn’t give a hoot about them.
Once I made it about 100 pages in, however, my opinion changed. The humor and poking at society was still there in spades, but now we started finding out more about these girls. What made them tick, how they got to the point of entering Miss Teen Dream, how they relate to others, and we find out that there is more to the plot than there seems. And I started to love all of them.
Yes, even Taylor.
This book was hilarious. Here are some phrases I want to start using because of Beauty Queens:
“They bring the giggles.” – Momo B. Chacha, Dictator of the Republic of ChaCha, p. 111
“Don’t be such a douche nozzle.” -Taylor, Miss Texas, p. 105
“It’s a whole new world of pretty.” -Miss Teen Dream theme song, many many pages
By the end of the book, I was pumping my fist and fighting the urge to yell “F yeah! Fight the power, ladies!” I was also wondering about a Beauty Queens movie in the back of my mind. Miss Congeniality meets Castaway anyone?
Rating: 4/5. Libba Bray is truly a gifted and very very funny author.