Customer Reviews for

Beauty Queens

Average Rating 3.5
( 192 )
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5 Star

(82)

4 Star

(45)

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(21)

2 Star

(18)

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(26)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

13 out of 15 people found this review helpful.

Now if you'll excuse me, I have to go unscrew my smile!

Wow. I may not have been a crazy stalker fan of Libba Bray beforehand (the Gemma Doyle series didn't do anything for me - yes, you may duct-tape me now), but I think Beauty Queens has me wondering what crazy schemes this author will cook up next because I'm pretty sure ...
Wow. I may not have been a crazy stalker fan of Libba Bray beforehand (the Gemma Doyle series didn't do anything for me - yes, you may duct-tape me now), but I think Beauty Queens has me wondering what crazy schemes this author will cook up next because I'm pretty sure that I will be in that serving line! Even if it is chicken-tasting grub from some random island.

I realize that this book may not be for everyone - I wasn't even 1% sure if Beauty Queens would be my cup of tea. Yes, I was that uncertain of it. I kept glancing at the book in the bookstores, admiring the lipstick bullet belt concept, but unsure if I was ready for a leap of faith. So I borrowed it from the library and took the book out for a spin.

And holy smokes! Did Beauty Queens grab my attention from the get-go and shook me silly in a similar fashion that Miss Congeniality did? Except 200% more to the power of infinity and whatever goes beyond that? I think flying toasters might be involved in the beyond.

As far-fetched as Beauty Queens may sound, Libba Bray really applies her witty parody quite liberally like sunscreen - and I loved all her shout-outs and snark-outs that celebrated (or eulogized) all things pop culture. Everything was outrageous - everything, that is, except the message that it is okay to be yourself, even if that includes a little crazy or ugly or random. I cannot imagine how much FUN Ms. Bray had with re-inventing the world of pop culture because they are truly quite clever!

What really impressed me with Beauty Queens is how the girls were introduced to the readers via pageant bios and then the next chapter focused on digging deep into what makes them tick, even though everything was told in third-person. It really gave me enough time to connect with each girl and then gradually tie them as one large group into the main story arc. With so many characters to juggle around and decide who gets centerstage for certain moments, I give props to Libba Bray for managing to find a way to make it easy for the readers to befriend the characters. It almost felt like 4 years of high school with a class of 200+ individuals - you start off as strangers, but leave as one big family.

I think Libba Bray may very well be the next Douglas Adams or Joseph Heller in my book. Not a whole lot of authors can serve such a ridiculous dish of random that makes me clutch my stomach from laughing too hard and yet I couldn't stop from devouring the pages!

And for your reading pleasure (in truth, this is for my own because I probably inhaled a pepperoni up my nose when I read this snippet), bar none my favoritest quote from the book because the delivery is GOLDEN:

"I count the time like my hemorrhoids."
"TMI, MoMo."
"TMI to you, too, my darling."

Please excuse me while I ROFL with pepperoni up my nose. (Dear Readers, you may just want to go out and try this random slice of paradise.)

posted by epicrat on October 1, 2011

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Most Helpful Critical Review

34 out of 61 people found this review helpful.

Question..Can I have my brain cells back?

I picked this book up off a display and thought it would be absolutely hilarious and a great read because it was by Libba Bray, unfortunately it was a dissapointment. This book should be on the back shelf not on a display for everyone to see. If you can get over the mai...
I picked this book up off a display and thought it would be absolutely hilarious and a great read because it was by Libba Bray, unfortunately it was a dissapointment. This book should be on the back shelf not on a display for everyone to see. If you can get over the main characters ghaustly language and bimbo mindset then it might actually be good, but it drove me insane. There was just to much going on! From lesbian contestants to transexual contestants, to the undercover contestant, the contestant that somehow survives the entire time with a tray sticking out of her head and the contestant that loses her mind that was enough...then we have the reality TV show british hunky pirates that land on the island. You can't forget the military/corporation compound hidden on the island making arms deals with the Republic of ChaCha (??really??) that happens to be with a guy that dresses like Elvis?? AND being from Texas it was a little upseting that the Miss Texas contestant talks like she is the biggest redneck hick known to man..and she is the biggest bimbo of all minus the knowledge of using guns..then happens to be the one that goes completely insane...yeah...not cool.
To much for me..I mean you may like this but I would personally like my time and brain cells back. Saying this book was a dissapointment and a disaster is being nice.

posted by cara_ann on May 26, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 1, 2011

    Awful.

    A lot of prejudice against American girls! Hey we are not airheads! Besides Miss NH and Miss Cali and Miss Colorado the girls werent very educated, except in the end they kindda came to their senses....but still! :P

    3 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 3, 2013

    Poorly written

    This book was hard for me to follow. While there were entertaining parts about the characters, I felt they were under developed. Very strange read.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 10, 2012

    I got this book because I heard it was really funny. It was sort

    I got this book because I heard it was really funny. It was sort of funny, but the stupidity of some of the girls was just hard to read. And some of the things that happened seemed really unrealistic. Like the snake that had swallowed Sosie. Also how Miss New Mexico had survived with a tray in her head the entire time. Some parts were extremely predictible, too, like Petra's big secret. I found that out almost right away and was just waiting until they finally said so. I didn't understand the random commercial breaks and all the notes on the bottom. Why were they there? I know everything with Agent Jones and such helped end the book, but throwing it around at random confused me a lot.
    So this book was okay. I don't think people need to get offended about how people from their state were dumb or went crazy, because that wasn't really the point. I wouldn't really suggest reading this. At least don't buy it, if you want to read it, check it out from the library.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 9, 2013

    It was too feminist.

    It was too feminist.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2012

    Not what I expected..

    I wish i could do 1.5 stars

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 15, 2012

    Ehh

    It is pretty complicated and unrealistic i didnt enjoy it

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 25, 2011

    I Also Recommend:

    Meh

    Like the header says. This book is just...meh. Just dissapointing. I loved Bray's A Great and Terrible Beauty series and I realize that this wasn't supposed to be like that but come on. This is the first book I bought for my new nook color and I got it even after reading some of the bad reviews because I love Libba Bray's writing. Unfortunately I regret purchasing this book. It is just ok, nothing to write home about. The idea was great but it didn't follow through. The story is told from way too many characters POV's and all of the characters ended up being underdeveloped. I won't completely trash this book though I mean it did have some moments that made me laugh out loud but other than those moments I just found it silly and hard to get through. Read it if you're bored but save yourself the $10 and check it out at the library.

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  • Posted September 20, 2011

    Not great.

    What I liked: 1) Well, I've already said I liked the cover. It really fits the story very well, and pops off the shelf. 2) The concept. Beauty Queens stranded on a "deserted" island? That just screams amusement to me. 3) The humor. There were parts of it that were funny. 4) There were some...Lord of the Flies parallels that I'm not sure were intentional, but I liked finding them. It's hard to find a good Lord of the Flies joke these days.

    What I didn't like: Unfortunately, I didn't like most of the rest of it. 1) I couldn't find any of the characters that I liked. At first, I thought I was going to like Adina, because she's a snarky character who thinks that pageants are superficial stunts to objectify women. But even she grated on my nerves. And I read books with shallow characters. I've said before that I love Pretty Little Liars. But something about these girls, they just weren't believable. Even the issues that they face and the way they try to solve them. 2) There were just too many side stories going on for me to ever feel very committed to any of them. Part of that was because there were so many characters that we were following and everyone had their own stories, but it was very difficult keeping up with everyone. The only thing that could have been harder had they all had those really confusing Russian names (think Dostoyevsky).

    Overall thoughts: Well, I really don't like to call anything unbelievable because I am a lover of paranormal fiction. But I felt like this book was really reaching to find an audience that could find anything to relate to in the story. The characters were not likeable, the plot line didn't flow because it was broken up by too many uncompromising storylines, and even the end was just...strange. I didn't feel satisfied when the book was over, more like relieved. The most redeeming part of the book was the satirization of Lord of The Flies. That being said, I think Libba Bray has a really good sense of humor, and I'd like to see how some of her other books are. If you haven't read one of them before, I don't think I'd suggest starting with this one.

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  • Posted June 5, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Definitely Not What I Had Expected

    I can't decide whether or not I liked this book. It had so many different plot lines, it was hard to follow.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted July 13, 2011

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