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Beauty Queens - Audio Library Edition by…
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Beauty Queens - Audio Library Edition (edition 2011)

by Libba Bray

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1,1881716,757 (3.8)91
Member:baystateRA
Title:Beauty Queens - Audio Library Edition
Authors:Libba Bray
Info:Scholastic Audio Books (2011), Edition: Unabridged, Audio CD
Collections:Read - Audiobooks
Rating:*****
Tags:young adult, audiobook, humor, satire, teen girls, beauty pageants, friendship, Libba Bray

Work details

Beauty Queens by Libba Bray

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» See also 91 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 171 (next | show all)
I took on the Completely Contemp. Challenge as a way to explore more YA contemp. writing, and I'm starting to think that contemporary isn't my thing. I loved Libba Bray's Going Bovine, but for some reason I just couldn't get into Beauty Queens. The book was by no means bad. The writing was excellent, the plot was great, the characters were diverse and quirky, all things I normally love. I just couldn't get drawn into this one. I've noticed that happening with the contemps I read of late, and as there is nothing wrong with the majority of these books, I believe it's just my personal preference leaning towards paranormal. Anyone who does like contemp. should love this, and I would definitely recommend it to that group of readers. ( )
  Kelly_Mills | Dec 13, 2014 |
This is a strange bird of a book. Listed as YA, it has strong feminist underpinnings and can be appreciated by women and reality show viewers of all ages! I chose it for my book club and some members didn't enjoy it at all. I appreciated the over-the-top humor, but my favorite parts were before the reality show pirates, The Corporation, the Sarah Palin clone and her Kim Jung Il boyfriend made their appearances on the desert island. I also thought it was too long by about 75 pages. But a big fun romp with pageant girls who grow and change and bond right before the reader's eyes in a most remarkable way. The footnotes are genius.

Also, if you are a fan of the late lamented "Lost", there are sneaky tributes scattered throughout. ( )
  froxgirl | Dec 10, 2014 |
Originally Published On My Review Blog http://www.thebookavid.blogspot.com

In "Beauty Queens" by Libba Bray, the contestants of the Miss Teen Dream Beauty Pageant fall victims to a plane crash and now have to survive alone on an island in the middle of nowhere.

I went in with the wrong expectations. Had I known that this is nothing but a very shallow satire on american consumerism and patriarchy, I would have never read it. The problem I have with this novel is that it is neither one nor the other. The topics that Bray only does as much as cut into, are definitely actual problems that need to be discussed and taken care of - but the way she deals with them just makes me want to shake my head. But first things first.

Starting with the characters. What's extremely striking about this novel is that there are so many diverse characters in this that you're basically just waiting for the next character to reveal their special snowflake status.

From deaf to transgender, to questioning sexuality, to lesbian, to feminist, to celibate, to mentally-ill, the beauty pageant contestants show every possible plot twist about their identity and/or personality. This would be great and I would be cheering usually, weren't they incorporated into a novel that was basically just written for jokes. The characters are definitely interesting and well-developed and I am sad that she didn't use them for a serious work. I thought I was dealing with a serious novel that displays serious social critique while also taking LGBTQ* issues into consideration. Wrong.

The characters in Libba Bray's novel are mainly used to show that no matter what sexuality, what ethnic background, you're a consumerist douchebag, and I, the oh-so-smart author, am going to help you fix this! Don't worry!

I know that it's a satire, I know you're supposed to shrug these kinds of novels off and say 'hey, it's just a joke' - but no. I refuse to do that because I genuinely want to know what she thought when she wrote this. Yes, corporate America is a problem, and no, it's not just them. As a non-american, I can assure you that it's not only their country that has issues, encourages superficiality and drives teen girls (and also boys) insane, trying to withstand the pressure. I don't want this to turn into an angry social justice rant, so I'm going to stop here. Onto the plot. (Characters 2/5)

Honestly, I didn't understand jackshit of what is going on in this novel. The overall development makes little to no sense, probably that's the point - but how come these two dozen girls that are forced to fight for their lives on an island, do not notice that they're not alone on there? I have never understood how the plot twist of every survival movie/novel ever is that they're not alone. Usually, the first thing a rational human being would do is explore their territory, right? Yeah, I know, satire - people are stupid, yadayadayada. But really, this just frustrates me. You can't write a novel with the premise that basically everyone is stupid and oblivious to what is going in front of their eyes and then have plot holes in your novel the size of Mount Everest. Maybe that's exactly her tactics, but with all due respect, then she needs to change it. (Plot 0/5)

I'm just angry about having wasted my time with a novel that didn't give me anything. I didn't learn anything, probably only that I should check out the genres under which a novel is listed on Goodreads first, the next time I'm buying a novel.
Educating people on feminism, LGBTQ* issues, and consumerism is important. Yes, of course. But doing this in a way that makes you feel like you're a third grader, because she explains everything over and over again just drives me up the walls. I can't even say that this should be a MG read because she cuts into rather sexual scenes (for no reason) between the beauty pageant girls and random male sidekicks (using insta-love of course).

I don't know what she was thinking, but having even heard the term feminism ever in your life, will give you the same notion. Honestly, this novel is a mess, the plot structure is horrible, and those annoying annotations drive me nuts. This would have never gotten published, had it been the first work of hers. Never. To illustrate, how stupid, superficial and annoying we all are as a collective race (or just Americans, because yeah, the US are the only country that messes up [DO YOU EVEN WATCH THE NEWS]), she inserts screen play scripts for commercials. I am not kidding. There are even profiles for her characters interrupting the story! This is even frowned upon among fanfiction writers, I just, I can't understand this. I can't get into my head what editor sat there and was thinking to himself "Yes, this is innovative. This is funny, we need to print that."
I can't, I absolutely can't. (Writing 1/5)

Overall: Do I recommend?

I recommend to stay away from this. A waste of time, of money, and sanity. I could have used my anger in more productive ways than reading this crap. Hint: If a novel blurb already says it's hilarious, it's not going to be hilarious.

Rating: ★☆☆☆☆ ( )
  bookavid | Nov 26, 2014 |
Beauty Queens. By Libba Bray. Scholastic Press. 2011. 390 pages. $18.99 hbk. 978-0439895972. Grades 8-12.

Teen beauty queens’ plane crash-lands on a deserted island – though it sounds like the beginnings of a bad joke, Bray takes this unlikely subject matter and masterfully creates a whole host of well-rounded teenage protagonists, in whose journeys of self-discovery and mutual salvation the reader revels. The survivors of the crash band together, both to stay alive and to continue rehearsing for the big show – and ultimately face off against The Corporation, the ominous corporate entity behind the pageant and their current stranded situation. Though the novel deals with some of the serious issues faced by teenagers today (sexism, racism, transphobia, ableism, coming out, pent-up sexual desire), the characters never feel gimmicky or preachy, making their eventual triumph over both their personal problems and their desolate situation all the sweeter. It is a delight to see so many empowered female characters, each with her own personality and struggles, in a novel geared towards teenaged girls, a demographic oft-targeted by society’s crippling standards of female roles and female beauty (Bray’s satirical take on this aspect of pop culture is uproariously funny – think a boy band song called “Let Me Shave Your Legs Tonight, Girl” or a depilatory cream called “Lady ‘Stache Off” that doubles as an explosive). Highly recommended reading – especially (but not exclusively) for young women in search of unique, funny fiction that tackles some serious subjects without getting bogged down. ( )
  tierneyc | Oct 23, 2014 |
Funny, over-the-top YA tale that starts when a plane of teen beauty queens crashes on a tropical island where a shady international corporation is about to organize an arms deal with an evil dictator. Lots of fun as the author bashes the worst of capitalist, narcissistic culture. ( )
  judiparadis | Oct 1, 2014 |
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Libba Brayprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bray, LibbaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For Barry and Josh.

And for every body trying to figure out who they really are.
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This book begins with a plane crash.
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Tiara's hands flew to her mouth. "In health class, they told us there's an or in whore because you always have a choice to respect your body and say no. You've got one of those STPs now, don't you?"
Petra stared. "STP is a motor oil."
"Oh. My. Gosh. We didn't learn about that one. It must be really bad!" Tiara gestured solemnly to her crotch. "Protect the citadel. Protect the citadel."
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Book description
From bestselling, Printz Award-winning author Libba Bray comes the story of a plane of beauty pageant contestants that crashes on a desert island.Teen beauty queens. A Lost-like island. Mysteries and dangers. No access to emall. And the spirit of fierce, feral competition that lives underground in girls, a savage brutality that can only be revealed by a journey into the heart of non-exfoliated darkness. Oh, the horror, the horror! Only funnier. With evening gowns. And a body count.
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When a plane crash strands thirteen teen beauty contestants on a mysterious island, they struggle to survive, to get along with one another, to combat the island's other diabolical occupants, and to learn their dance numbers in case they are rescued in time for the competition.… (more)

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