Gorgeous: A Book Review


I changed up the format of my review a bit. Are you excited?! Be excited :)


Title: Gorgeous

Author: Paul Rudnick

Published: April 30th, 2013 by Scholastic Press

Pages: 336

Genre: Young Adult / Fantasy

Source: Birthday gift from my family / Hardcover

Series: Nope!

Summary: When eighteen-year-old Becky Randle’s mother dies, she’s summoned from her Missouri trailer park to meet Tom Kelly, the world’s top designer. He makes her an impossible offer: He’ll create three dresses to transform Becky from a nothing special girl into the most beautiful woman who ever lived. Becky thinks Tom is a lunatic, or that he’s producing a hidden camera show called World’s Most Gullible Poor People. But she accepts, and she’s remade as Rebecca. When Becky looks in the mirror, she sees herself – an awkward mess of split ends and cankles. But when anyone else looks at Becky, they see pure five-alarm hotness.

Soon Rebecca is on the cover of Vogue, the new Hollywood darling, and dating celebrities. Then Becky meets Prince Gregory, heir to the British throne, and everything starts to crumble. Because Rebecca aside, Becky loves him. But to love her back, Gregory would have to look past the blinding Rebecca to see the real girl inside. And Becky knows there’s not enough magic in the world. {from Goodreads}

My Thoughts: Well, this was quite an interesting read. Seriously, friends, I am not sure how to review this one, because frankly, it was just strange. The author, Paul Rudnick, seemed to have really good intentions, but by combining so many elements – beauty, self-image, magic, royalty, movie-making, hotel management – the story just ended up jumbled and disjointed. I think you must have the right mindset to go into reading this one; otherwise, you’ll be confused from the very beginning!

Let’s start off with the synopsis given, shall we? When I first received this, I was so excited to start it! The whole idea of being the most beautiful women in the world as an illusion really intrigued me, as I was interested in how the author would go about it. Unfortunately though, when I finished the book, and as I look back on the summary now, it’s really misleading. There’s not a ton about the magic/weird forces involved, although that makes up a HUGE chunk of the book. That always bums me out, because that’s one of the first things I look at to decide whether or not to get a book.

Speaking of which, magic is a pretty big element of the book, and it explains a lot of the major conflicts. Because of that, it reminds me a bit of Invisibility, in that I knew magic was going to be involved, I just didn’t realize that it was going to be the cause of a lot of events in the storyline. And, like I said above, the book as a whole felt weirdly disconnected. A lot of things seemed to have no meaning behind them, just thrown in for extra fluff. I was hoping for a better flow.

The biggest flaw for me in this book was the main character, Becky. I couldn’t connect with her on any level, and, in part, that is due to her role as two characters – Becky, her normal self from Missouri, and Rebecca, the girl that everyone swoons over. It was hard for me to ever get a real feel for her because she was always acting as one of the two people. On the other hand, I really enjoyed some of the secondary characters, even though many of them suffered from a lack of solid development. One of my all-time favorites was the prince of England. I loved his witty humor, and, despite my annoyance with the character of Becky, I really liked the relationship that grew between the pair. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t secretly rooting for them all along!

All in all, Gorgeous wasn’t my favorite, nor was it my most hated book of all time. To be perfectly honest, it was kind of forgettable, and while I do appreciate the effort of the author, I think there a good amount of books out there that do a much better job sending the message of positive body image. Unless you’re really interested in finding out what happens {although it is pretty predictable}, I suggest passing on this one.

Pros: The redeeming part of this book is the entertaining cast of secondary characters! I loved the humor they added to the storyline, even though they could have all used another look, development-wise. The storyline also moves really quickly and kept me fairly interested, so points for that too!

Cons: I really struggled to connect with the main character on any level. The plot had many holes, as well.

Heads Up: Language, definitely! Some terms and phrases that are thrown around could possibly offend, depending on your level of tolerance.

Overall: I give it 3 stars {***}, and I recommend it for ages 14 and up.

Have a lovely day!


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