Rating: 4 paws
One quote from the book that I particularly cared for: “Men have feelings too, you know. You bruise the petals of my manflower.”
Summary of the book in one sentence: Beauty Queens is a wonderful story about how the Liberal Agenda triumphs over Crass Commercialism Ideals.
First paw consists of the writing style – this is the technical aspect of the book. It was a bit disconcerting, the different points of view and snippets of commercials interspersed through out the book, but I think that Bray actually handled it well, and it wasn’t so jarring that it threw me out of the book. It was definitely a departure from first person, single protagonist writing, and, to be honest, I loved the snippets. Also? she’s hilarious. At least, she feeds my sense of humor. And, as her audience, that’s really all one can ask for.
The second paw is “emotional connection” – basically, was I *interested* in what I was reading? Even while I wanted to throw something at the characters from time to time, I was emotionally connected to them. Actually, me saying that I wanted to throw something is probably a pretty good indicator that I was emotionally connected to the book. And, it’s certainly a book that, simply because of the values it’s preaching, is going to make people connect – either in a good way, or a bad. It rather depends on how one reacts to the values, and preaching.
Third paw is plot – akin to writing style, but purely about The Story. As it’s political/social commentary and satire, and it’s also very Agenda-ed writing, the plot is very predictable and easily seen through. Of course, there’s not much that one can do about that, with Agenda-ed writing. I think that the blatant humor running rampant throughout, and the highly entertaining and endearing characters more than made up for it, though.
The last paw is “Other Stuff,” which is pretty much anything that doesn’t go into another category but is still note-worthy. While I very much enjoyed the book, it also made me want to go read something that was the exact opposite, afterwards, simply to have a more balanced world view. That’s purely a “me” thing, though. Also, I read this book over a year ago, and I still remember bits and pieces of it, and would be more than happy to re-read it. I thought it highly enjoyable.