katewrites: (Default)
This book was somewhat charming in that typical YA way, except I couldn't help compare it to Ella Enchanted, and it didn't measure up. The main character (Aza) is very ugly and unlike most YA where ugly isn't ugly, she's described as actually not attractive. And then she spends the whole book obsessing about how ugly she is and wanting becoming pretty. I knew almost nothing about her character other than that she hated being ugly.

Which... I mean, I guess that was characterization? But I didn't know a single thing about her other than that she sings really well (but so does everyone else) and that she hates being ugly. After 350 pages, the self hatred started to get grating. I don't think main characters always need to like themselves, but in general it's boring to read about a character who experiences no growth at all in a novel.

One of the awesome things about Ella Enchanted was that GCL showed us Ella and the Prince falling in love. We saw what attracted them to each other, we saw how she made him laugh and how he tried to impress her. In Fairest, I had no idea what attracted Aza to the Prince. Was it because he was handsome? Was it because he was funny? We saw so few of their interactions that I had no idea of their chemistry.

Essentially, they loved each other because GCL said that then they were in love, which was incredibly disappointing.

Finally, the plot was random and kind of forced. I was annoyed because the plot of Ella Enchanted seems to flow naturally and everything makes sense. Here, there wasn't any payoff, the people who were mean to her never get punished and the resolution is a giant Deus Ex Machina.

I'm curious to read another GCL book to see if it is more like Ella Enchanted or Fairest.

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katewrites

February 2016

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