The Fine Art of Truth or Dare

The Fine Art of Truth or Dare

3.7 33
by Melissa Jensen
     
 

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Pretty in Pink meets Anna and the French Kiss in this charming romantic comedy

Ella is nearly invisible at the Willing School, and that's just fine by her. She's got her friends - the fabulous Frankie and their sweet cohort Sadie. She's got her art - and her idol, the unappreciated 19th-century painter Edward Willing. Still, it's hard being a

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Overview

Pretty in Pink meets Anna and the French Kiss in this charming romantic comedy

Ella is nearly invisible at the Willing School, and that's just fine by her. She's got her friends - the fabulous Frankie and their sweet cohort Sadie. She's got her art - and her idol, the unappreciated 19th-century painter Edward Willing. Still, it's hard being a nobody and having a crush on the biggest somebody in the school: Alex Bainbridge. Especially when he is your French tutor, and lessons have started becoming, well, certainly more interesting than French ever has been before. But can the invisible girl actually end up with a happily ever after with the golden boy, when no one even knows they're dating? And is Ella going to dare to be that girl?

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Artistic 16-year-old Ella Marino is a scholarship student at an elite Philadelphia private school where she has two impossible crushes: one is Edward, the long-dead nephew of her school’s founder and a fellow artist; the other is Alex, a popular boy whose connection to Ella grows after he is assigned to be her French tutor. But Ella’s best friend does not trust the handsome rich boy, and even Ella fears she may be Alex’s “dirty little secret.” Jensen (Falling in Love with English Boys) gives readers a full sense of Ella’s life, from her loud, loving family that runs a local Italian restaurant to the honors thesis she is writing about Edward; in addition to her imagined conversations with Edward, Ella spends time searching through his archive, where she makes a surprising discovery. In contrast to all this vivid detail, side characters—including Ella’s quirky best friends—feel thinly drawn. Readers may grow impatient with the meandering story arc, but they will find Ella’s exchanges with Alex, Edward, and her warm family enough to propel them through. Ages 12–up. Agent: Caryn Wiseman, Andrea Brown Literary Agency. (Feb.)
Children's Literature - Sarah Maury Swan
Ella Marino has an unwelcome nickname—Freddy—to go along with scar that runs from her jaw bone to her chest. She got the scar when she was scalded at her family's restaurant several years before she entered Willing Academy and has been defensive about it ever since. Like most teenagers, she has a crush on the most unattainable, she thinks, boy in her school. Alex runs with the popular crowd and is dating the school's Queen Bee, who of course hates Ella. Frankie, who is gay, and Sadie are Ella's best friends and always have her back. Well, except where it comes to Alex, whose crowd is beyond snarky to those they consider lesser mortals. Ella has another crush with whom she can actually have conversations. Granted the conversations are all in Ella's head since Edward Willing is the long deceased founder of the school she is attending. Still he does give her good advice. Through her research into Willing's life, Ella learns stuff about life in general and herself in particular. Then Alex begins to pay attention to her and finally scolds her for having low self-esteem. They bond over their love of drawing and find they have much in common. The story covers believing in oneself and sticking up for friends, but also has a good dose of learning about artists and how to follow your own dreams. The characters are nicely drawn for the most part, although the snarky ones are a bit stereotypical, and there isn't a mythical or alien character in the book which actually takes place in modern times. Reviewer: Sarah Maury Swan

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780142420904
Publisher:
Penguin Young Readers Group
Publication date:
02/16/2012
Pages:
400
Sales rank:
720,846
Product dimensions:
5.56(w) x 8.52(h) x 1.02(d)
Age Range:
12 Years

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