Monday, April 27, 2015

Audiobook Review: Beauty Queens by Libba Bray

Quick Facts
My Rating: 5 stars

Series: N/A

Date Read: April 25, 2015

Source: Purchased audiobook

Publication Date: May 24, 2011

Publisher: Scholastic Press

Genres: Young adult, contemporary

After their plane crashes, thirteen beauty queens are stuck on an island. They start off panicked and mostly still pageant-centered, as many of the girls have dedicated their entire lives to beauty and competition. They wait for someone to come and save them. As time goes by, they begin to worry more about survival - if they aren't found, how will they make it on their own?

Ultimately, this book is about realizing that, while society has a million expectations for people - especially girls - we each have to make our own choices. Some will go out of their way to be pretty whether it's expected or not, and some prefer not to put in the effort. And sometimes, beauty only gets you so far anyway.

I really enjoyed the variety of characters in this book, not only for the diversity but the personalities. Each girl was so different from the others, and they all felt like real people. I can't imagine how difficult it would be to get into the heads of so many people, and to do it right. Beauty Queens gave readers insight into so many of the characters, as it was told in third person and changed perspective quite often.

The format of the book was also brilliant. I'm not sure how it would look in print format, as I listened to this one on audio, but this wasn't only a straight-forward story line. The plot was broken up occasionally by facts about the girls, sheets filled out by them for the pageant, that gave so much insight into their lives and their thoughts, despite being pretty short. There were also "commercials" from time to time, and I don't think any of them failed to make me laugh.

This book managed to be both very funny and incredibly honest. Sometimes things the girls would say or think broke my heart, and other times I couldn't hold back laughter. I'm not sure I've ever reacted to another book quite the way I did this one, and it was just really fun. It definitely brightened my day listening to the audiobook, and I found myself cleaning just so I had something to do while I listened longer. (I spent hours doing that. I was so productive that day.)

Overall, I cannot think of one negative thing to say about this one. I'm already wondering when I can pick up Libba Bray's other books, because I'm almost positive I will enjoy them as well. I can't believe I didn't read this sooner!


  1. Great review! I am adding this one to the TBR pile. :)

    1. Thank you! I hope you can get around to reading it soon!