Two Minute Reviews: Wicked Lovely and Miranda's Big Mistake

Friday, July 1, 2011

Author: Melissa Marr
Genre: paranormal/supernatural/mythic fiction, young-adult
Series: Wicked Lovely #1
Pages: 336 (Nook version)
Published: June 2007
Rating: 3.5/5

This was a good book. It wasn't great, though it had potential to be and hopefully so do the sequels; what it was was it was fresh, vibrant and unexpectedly lively. The pacing is fluid and unhurried and filled with enough tension to make the pages fly. The climax is not the most exciting or gripping, honestly, but it is interesting and with enough surprises to keep your attention. The author does her best not to cut corners so often tossed aside in YA writing (instant love, love triangles to increase tension), relying instead on the tense scenario crafted for the story to work its magic.
The main character Aislinn was well-written, and I truly liked that she didn't immediately become dependent on either boy she was interested in to define her character or her desires. Yes, she definitely leaned on one of them for help and support but she did so without losing her identity for his or his ideas. She's feisty without being a parody of feminism, she's clever and enjoyable to read. However, there was a particular part of the novel, near the end, when Aislinn's nonreaction to a rather important plot point left me disjointed. Literally, it made no sense for her not to have any sort of LARGE reaction to the revelation. I was expecting a great roar of drama and pain, and was absolutely off the mark in my expectations. It completely pulled me out of the narrative right at a pivotal moment and I never sank back in as completely. 

Aside from Aislinn, the fae Donia was another favorite of mine. Evil Beira largely seemed a cat without claws for ninety percent of the events of the book. She was intimidating, vocally sadistic and cruel, and bitchy, yes, but we never actually see her do anything (to the Summer Court.. she takes out her own with no compunction) but hiss and threaten. Most of the characters are detailed and real (Keenan, Seth, Donia, Beira) but a few were token characters that didn't add anything essential but emotional baggage for Aislinn (Grams, friends/teachers at high school) to worry over/possibly leave behind. 

The virtues more than make up for the flaws in the book. All in all, a thoroughly distracting and readable novel. 

Author: Jill Mansell
Genre: general fiction, romance novel-ish
Series: N/A
Pages: 496 (Nook version)
Published: June 2009
Rating: 2/5

A fairly amusing, fairly predictable chick-lit-ish story. Not to say I did not enjoy it, but it was not groundbreaking or earth shattering, actually far far from it. But it was full of humor, with the best part of the story: the characters. Not necessarily even the main character, but the secondary characters of Miranda's life Florence, Fenn, and even Bev were a welcome breeze of energy and sarcasm. The love-interest angle was fairly easy to spot, and therefore the novel was essentially predictable in the one area that had possibility for ingenuity.

Miranda's Big Mistake lagged for a bit around the middle and the pacing felt a bit rushed towards the end of the book. It was too long for the amount of plot the story did possess, affecting the pacing and plotting to a detrimental degree.  Probably partially due to a plot that seemed familiar and told many times, I did not feel like any new emotional ground was broken by this book. It was pretty much just a run-of-the-mill romance novel-ish story. I felt like unnecessary characters were introduced (though charming) that did not relate to the plot or advance the story in any way. However, I enjoyed the outcome for everyone involved so I did not mind too much. I was not too personally invested in any of the characters, or their lives at any point during the novel.

I honestly can't say that Miranda's Big Mistake is a noteworthy read out there in the thousands and thousands of books waiting to be read, or that I will ever be rereading it (I won't) but it was the most enjoyable book I don't care a whit about from this year. 

My monthly planned reads for July:

A Dance with Dragons by George R. R. Martin (out the 15th)
Heartless by Gail Carriger (out the 28th of June)
Legacy by Kayla Cluver
Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver
The Iron Fey series by Julie Kagawa 
Wintertide by Michael J. Sullivan

look for these reviews in July!


  1. I enjoyed Wicked Lovely because I had no idea what to expect -- I rather liked Aislinn but I confess, I have a soft spot for Seth. (I think it was his piercings.) I haven't gotten around to the other books, though, mostly because I can only take YA in small doses -- plus the second book follows someone else, I think, and I'm not so wild about that. We'll see.

  2. I liked Seth a lot! I just expected more, I guess. I dunno. It was good, just not what I wanted I suppose. And yeah, I think it follows one of Aislinn's friends. I have yet to decide if I am going to read it :)


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