Monday, April 9, 2012

North of Beautiful

  :My random thoughts:
What is wrong with me? Romances I enjoyed, and Teen chic novels I love/hate? Oh oh bother. 

When I first started this book, I hated it with venom.  Terra, in my opinion, was a selfish, vain person.  All she cared about was her appearance, and she seemed like a shallow person.  I put it aside, and vowed never to pick it back up.  That never works. I have a pride that every book I've borrowed from the library I've finished, and I didn't want to break that flawless record.  I picked it back up one night when Insomnia was being annoying, and I'm afraid, I didn't hate it so much.

Because of Jacob.

The Goth guy really just...Mm..He got me right in a tender spot.  But mostly because he taught Terra that what is on your face doesn't matter! It is what your inner self is like.  Jacob redeemed the novel.

:Publisher's Description:

As he continued to stare, I wanted to point to my cheek and remind him, But you were the one who wanted this, remember? You're the one who asked-and I repeat-Why not fix your face?

It's hard not to notice Terra Cooper.

She's tall, blond, and has an enviable body. But with one turn of her cheek, all people notice is her unmistakably "flawed" face. Terra secretly plans to leave her stifling small town in the Northwest and escape to an East Coast college, but gets pushed off-course by her controlling father. When an unexpected collision puts Terra directly in Jacob's path, the handsome but quirky Goth boy immediately challenges her assumptions about herself and her life, and she is forced in yet another direction. With her carefully laid plans disrupted, will Terra be able to find her true path?

Written in lively, artful prose, award-winning author Justina Chen Headley has woven together a powerful novel about a fractured family, falling in love, travel, and the meaning of true beauty

  :info to know:
Author: Justina Chen Headley
My recommended age: 13+ (Girls)
Their recommended age: NA
Publisher: Little Brown Books for Young Readers
Number of Pages: 384
  • Characters:  As mentioned above, I don't like Tessa. Even though she gets over her face issues, I still never got the attachment to her that I probably should've to fully enjoy the book.  Her Dad, I hated, but it was a good hate. His character was so perfectly written, you can't help but hate him. Despicable man.  Her Mother is truly a sweet dear, even though sometimes I grew exasperated with her.  She was such a wilted flower, and didn't even try to help herself.  I guess thats what can happen to people though, when they are in a verbally abusive relationship.  And Jacob...How do I even start with him? He was wonderful.  If he hadn't been there, and if his character had been any different, I might never have had the love/hate I do for the book, it would be just a hate/hate.
It was enjoyable, and truly makes you yearn for travel.

Writing Style:
It was good.  No huge remark, nothing really struck me.

Well, its evident the girl on the cover doesn't have a port wine stain, and it would've been nice if the artist had gotten a model that did.

There is some good here.  The whole novel, I expected Terra's mom and dad to get divorced in the end. And I don't think divorce is a good, Christian thing (not that this novel is a christian YA to start out with). So I was cringing a little inside.  But if anything, the whole book showed the adverse, bad affects of Divorce. And in the end, Mr and Mrs. Cooper don't divorce, but rather reach a middle ground.  Does Terra's Dad miraculously change? No. And that was very realistic. You can't expect someone to change their ways (which They've had for years) in one night.  It doesn't happen.  

World Building:
Well, Ms. Headley certainly showed the bright and bad sides to China.  I like my plumbing, thank you.

The Lord's name is taken in vain by Terra  and Jacob many times through out the book.
Drugs and Drink:

Romance and sexual content:
It happens before the book, but if briefly mentioned twice, Terra and Erik (Why did she have to name him Erik? Why? I love the name Erik, as it reminds me of my beautiful Erik The Opera Ghost) had sex. Not a subject this reviewer likes to see in books she reads.
And there is a scene in the beginning where Erik gropes Terra, again, I didn't much enjoy that.
Jacob and Terra kiss once.


This was an experimental novel. I wanted to see what it was today's girls read, and did I close the book pleased and ready to jump into the ring myself? Nope.  The book gave me enough of a taste that I've decided to stick with my action, adventure, sci-fi, thrillers.
(And Historical Romance might be an upcoming favorite of mine...jus'sayin') 

But My rating is:

If you already like Teen girl novels, you'd probably enjoy this one.  But as for Me, Myself and I? I'll take my Artemis Fowl, Classical, and CHAOS society and curl up in a little corner with a Trench coat and Tea.

Do you read any Teen Chic Flicks?


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