Friday, June 16, 2006

The Magical Mystery Tour--Third Stop

I finished reading I Was A Teenage Fairy by Francesca Lia Block, book three in my portion of The 48 Hour Book Challenge.

I chose a this book because Block's name was tossed around on one of the listservs as an author who writes what could be described as magical realism. Her bio at her website does say "Block's early influences expanded to include the magic-realist fiction of Gabriel Garcia Marquez and Isabel Allende."

I also loved the title.

I Was A Teenage Fairy made me think of a really, really, really well-written The A-List. It has that same California, money, Hollywood thing going on. (Plus a really bitchie fairy.) It's a much deeper book, though, and for a large part of the story there is the possibility that the fairy, Mab, is a figment of the main character's imagination. Barbie has a controlling mother, a distant father who abandons her, and she's molested as a child. You don't have to have aced Psych 101 to see what's going on here.

This is a very decent book, but the sophistication of the writing and the grittiness of the situations may make it of more interest for the older teen/young twentysomething crowd.

In fact, it might be a Buy A Friend A Book Week selection for a twenty-something reader who is into California/Hollywood stories and would be surprised by the fantasy element. Or it might be good for girls who are fond of the wealthy-girls-gone-bad series. It has some of those same elements, but it would be taking readers many steps toward an appreciation of better quality writing.

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