VOYA - Jane Chen
This book is predictable. The plot seems obvious and lacks surprises. The characters seem overused in teen-girl literature-the smart, pretty girl outwardly hates but internally loves the smart, popular, handsome boy who also secretly loves her. The ending is obvious before reading the second page. But the writing was fluid, and it was not a bad book to read. I would recommend this book to girls who like this genre.
VOYA - Ava Donaldson
This novel is full of clichTs and a predictable story line. Despite its fluffy and unrealistic plot, there are a couple of believable and likeable characters, but even they seem to follow all the trends and rules of a uniform "girl-meets-boy" story. Better written than most in its genre, this book still has nothing new to offer, is filled with impractical social boundaries, but is overall a fun if not unsurprising read.
VOYA - Cindy Faughnan
Honor student Charlotte's job in the mall as a perfume spritzer earns her money, but it also involves her with a small boy who attempts to shoplift shoes for his mother and enables her to discover that her best friend's boyfriend, Bryant, is dating another girl. She tries to convince the National Honor Society members to do a community service project for Christmas for the children of St. Matthew's Elementary School and attends a high-society party, trying to catch Bryant with the other girl. When she becomes interested in Bryant's best friend, who is also a member of her study group, she has to end her refusal to date boys from her own high school. Charlotte's buying a pair of $70 shoes for Reese, the little boy trying to steal them, is a bit unbelievable, but Charlotte's intentions are good and her willingness to work for the underdogs is evident in her actions. Funny situations abound, such as Charlotte eating the centerpiece at a party, inadvertently telling Reese to throw soda on Bryant, and setting the decorations at the winter dance on fire. As in other books of this type, Charlotte's quest to gain the perfect boyfriend is filled with humor, misunderstandings, and finally success. Although the book is predictable, the writing is readable, and it is nice to have a regular, smart teen with a regular family as the main character. The cover might not entice readers, but girls who like this type of book will find it quite satisfying.
Children's Literature - Rihoko Ueno
Charlotte is a smart, pretty high school student who learns more from her time at the mall than her time at school. She loves her part-time job as a perfume spritzeruntil she catches sight of her best friend Brianna's boyfriend flirting with another girl. When Charlotte tells Brianna what happened, nobody believes her. The incident sets events in motion as Charlotte learns to negotiate the shifting allegiances and teenage crushes of high school. Later Charlotte's generosity proves as problematic as her honesty when she takes on more than she can handle by helping a child in need. At this point the story falls into caricatures of the rich and the vaguely described struggles of the poor without ever creating a convincing portrait of Charlotte's altruism. The book reads like a future Lindsey Lohan movie. It arrives just in time for the holiday season, with a subplot about Christmas-giving thrown into a plot largely about a girl stumbling towards love.
School Library Journal
Gr 6-10-By people-watching at the mall, Charlotte learns who is on the prowl, who is depressed, and that her best friend's boyfriend is cheating. When she tells Brianna that Bryant was with another girl, she is accused of trying to split them up. Each of her attempts to catch him in the act is foiled by the handsome wrestler, Colton. Her clumsy antics don't help as she draws attention to herself by setting a table on fire, splattering fruit trays all over a room of society teens, and pushing Colton into a pool. To add to the predicament, Colton promises to use his father's financial resources to take Christmas presents to a group of underprivileged children if Charlotte will stop stalking his friend. Charlotte is deftly characterized, and her personality and history organically emerge. The same cannot be said for the other teens. The rich kids are stereotypical, Bryant is a cad, and Brianna is a damsel in distress. Although it is obvious from the beginning that Charlotte and Colton will end up together, it is hard to become invested in their budding relationship. What is compelling is Charlotte's desire to help the little boy she catches stealing shoes. That story, rather than the protagonist's relentless pursuit to catch Bryant, is the one that drives this novel.-Heather M. Campbell, Philip S. Miller Library, Castle Rock, CO Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Charlotte is a girl with problems, mostly of her own making, in Rallison's funny character study. Charlotte works at the mall, spritzing perfume on unsuspecting, innocent shoppers. When she spots her best friend's boyfriend, Bryant, with another girl, she's outraged. Her attempts to alert her friend, help a charming little boy and maybe even start her own romance with Colton, Bryant's handsome, rich friend, lead to more comedy. Charlotte first has to decide, though, if she wants Colton as a boyfriend. She constantly misinterprets whatever he says and can't stop drenching him with various liquids whenever they meet. Meanwhile, charming Colton sees right through her and tolerates her silly blunders. Rallison reveals Charlotte's character through her faults, yet winds up with an appealing portrait. It's a deft performance done with a light touch, adding up to a romp that will delight Rallison's fans. Plenty of laughs and some insight too. (Fiction. YA)
From the Publisher
“If you like witty and hilarious page-turners that keep you interested and laughing all the way through, then IT'S A MALL WORLD AFTER ALL by Janette Rallison is the book for you! This is the kind of book that keeps you wondering what hilarious twist is coming next.” TeensReadToo.com
“Charlotte is deftly characterized, and her personality and history organically emerge.” School Library Journal
“A deft performance done with a light touch, adding up to a romp that will delight Rallison's fans. Plenty of laughs and some insight too.” Kirkus Reviews
“Rallison offers a fun romp of a read that's sure to please teens looking for something light and breezy.” Booklist
“It's nice to have a regular, smart teen with a regular family as the main character . . . girls who like this type of book will find it quite satisfying.” VOYA