Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Revenge of the Girl with the Great Personality - Elizabeth Eulberg

Revenge of the Girl with the Great Personality book cover
Revenge of the Girl with the Great Personality by Elizabeth Eulberg
Publisher: Point
Publication Date: March 1, 2013
Source/Format: Netgalley (Thanks Scholastic!) || e-ARC
[I received this book from the publisher. This in no way affects the thoughts expressed in my review.]

Everybody loves Lexi. She's popular, smart, funny...but she's never been one of those girls, the pretty ones who get all the attention from guys. And on top of that, her seven-year-old sister, Mackenzie, is a terror in a tiara, and part of a pageant scene where she gets praised for her beauty (with the help of fake hair and tons of makeup).

Lexi's sick of it. She's sick of being the girl who hears about kisses instead of getting them. She's sick of being ignored by her longtime crush, Logan. She's sick of being taken for granted by her pageant-obsessed mom. And she's sick of having all her family's money wasted on a phony pursuit of perfection.

The time has come for Lexi to step out from the sidelines. Girls without great personalities aren't going to know what hit them. Because Lexi's going to play the beauty game - and she's in it to win it. (from Goodreads)

I am a girl with a “great personality”. I’ve known this about myself since high school, when the boys would like me, but like-like my friends. I’ll let you in on a little secret though – it’s always been something I’m happy about. Sure, I might have wished that I got more attention from the opposite sex or even just from other people in general. But I liked being the girl who everyone could get along with or be friends with. It gave me free rein to concentrate on writing and on school and on other fun obsessions, like boy bands and books.

So when I first heard about The Revenge of the Girl with the Great Personality, it was a sure bet I was interested in seeing just what Lexi would do about her “great personality” reputation. What I didn’t bargain on was discovering that this book was not only about a GP (great personality) girl who snagged the attention she craved; it was also about friendships and family and finding complete confidence in being the best version of you. The author manages to weave all these elements into a cohesive plot, and I found myself speeding through the pages until I reached the end.

Lexi is funny and intelligent, and it was easy to like her immediately. This doesn’t surprise me, as she is supposed to have that “great personality” touted in the title. I was all for her embracing her best self, as it’s fairly obvious at the start that she’s hiding a few things, but I wasn’t exactly the biggest fan when she went overboard with her transformation. Even if I didn’t like her attitude/personality transplant, I could understand it – everyone has that desire to simply be liked and noticed. I do like how, eventually, she realizes that she can be a girl with a great personality, but one who does make an effort to put her best foot forward in the world, in terms of appearance and otherwise.

It’s no surprise that Lexi is quickly swayed to embrace her physical transformation. It brings her attention and lends her an air of confidence she’s never had before, all things that she needs in the face of the extremely sad home situation she lives with. Her father is absent from her life, her sister is the pride and focus of the family and her mother… her mother is just the worst, contributing to the stress, low self-esteem and hidden anger Lexi harbors. 

Lexi becomes someone that makes me very proud at the end of the book, and I liked that. Her confidence in who she was and her conviction about what was right for her certainly made me want to applaud when I finished. We all need that one life-changing moment where we realized that it’s okay to be yourself, but that we need to attempt to be the best version we can be.

Of course, in this book, there are the boys. I quite liked Taylor from the very beginning, as Logan struck me as a typical popular kid. The romance isn’t the main focus of this book, but of course it played a part in Lexi discovering what she really wanted versus the things she had thought she wanted.

And then there are Lexi’s two amazing best friends, Benny and Cam. They’re such a fun trio together, and I like how they both were supportive of Lexi in different ways. Benny is the one who encourages her to embark on this journey where she fixes up her appearance, while Cam on the other hand reminds Lexi that there’s nothing more important than who she is versus what she looks like. I would like to have Cam and Benny in my own life, as they pretty much rocked at being Lexi’s friends.

The book shows the reader what pageants are like, particularly the ones held for kids. It was both fascinating and horrifying to witness how the pageants worked and what was asked of the kids, particularly when it came to the amount of work, practice and even money spent on them. It simply seemed crazy to me that some people would pursue this way of life to the point of financial instability (like Lexi’s mom, for instance), especially considering the fact that these are kids we’re talking about. But for the purposes of the book, it worked.

In the end, the only major issue I had in this book was the way that there was no resolution when it came to Lexi’s mother or father. I felt like these two were the loose threads that deserved to be further explored and possibly tied up neatly, and it was weird to end the book feeling like I wanted to still yell at her mother.

I really enjoyed reading The Revenge of the Girl with the Great Personality, more for Lexi’s journey than for anything else. It was fun to see how changing up her appearance kick-stated a change in her mindset and confidence level, and I was definitely rooting for her. Even though things felt a bit unresolved at the end with her parents, I’m choosing to believe in only the best for Lexi and her future, and I’m sure you will too.

17 comments:

  1. You know, I wasn't madly in love with this one. I didn't dislike it or anything, but it wasn't what I was expecting. I didn't like when Lexi dressed up like a beauty contestant and talked to her mother. There was something about that that didn't sit well with me. I also felt like it was a little too easy for Lexi to break out into the popular group just by changing her outfits. I just didn't think that was realistic. And also, I didn't like how things weren't resolved, like you said.

    But I did enjoy it enough to read the whole thing. Taylor was a sweetie and I loved Lexi's BFFs (I can't remember their names now).

    ReplyDelete
  2. Oh yayyyy!! I JUST started this book and in the very beginning, I was a little unsure about it - I'm glad to read your review and see that this book seems to have a lot of depth and really great moments! I can't wait to read the rest! :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. I wanted so much more resolution with her family-I like everything to be tied up and this wasn't even close. Great review-hitting on all the things that are covered in this book.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I read a review of this somewhere else too (from Estelle?) that mentioned the mom being pretty bad and also mentioned the pageantry. This sounds like an interesting book but I'm not sure that I want it to be my very first Eulberg. I love when the MC's undergo transformation, though, so that would be really interesting to me. Great review!

    ReplyDelete
  5. I thought the pageants were a great way to highlight the conflict that Lexi was feeling between wanting to reject all of that and wanting to be physically attractive. The other interesting thing is that we really don't know what Lexi looks like, because all we ever know is her view of herself. It was a thought provoking book. Great review!

    ReplyDelete
  6. I'm excited to get my hands on this (I kind of forgot about it), great review!

    ReplyDelete
  7. I think this book looks really good! And boys! I love boys in books! :)

    Great review, Alexa!

    ReplyDelete
  8. I'm so happy you liked this book! I haven't read it yet, but I'd really like to. Lexi's transformation sounds interesting, and the pageant element is definitely refreshing. The reviews I've read for this one have been a bit all over the place, but they've mostly been more positive than negative, which I like. Great review, Alexa!

    ReplyDelete
  9. I haven't seen too many reviews of this one, but now I'm convinced I should pick it up. Lexie sounds like a character I could relate to, and Benny and Cam sound fabulous! I read the first few pages and thought it was pretty funny (no surprise, given the guaranted GP :D). Amazing review!

    ReplyDelete
  10. I love to read books that include great friendships! Cam and Benny sound like friends we should all have :)

    Also nice to hear that the romance did not take the center of the story. Thanks for the great review:) I think I will have to pick this up eventually!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Oh so weird I just got this book today randomly and I hadn't heard a thing about it before so it's good to see this! Lexi sounds like she has a great character development and growth throughout the story which I think is needed for any contemp and she sounds like the kind of girl I would like as an MC, too! I think I'll like this for sure it also sounds like a great summer read!

    ReplyDelete
  12. It's always nice to see a mc develop into the type of character you hoped she would be in the end. Initially this didn't appeal to me as I thought the heroine wouldn't be my cup of tea, but I may just have to re-consider! Great review. :)

    ReplyDelete
  13. I haven't heard much about this book but I'm glad a book that promises a character with a great personality, actually delivers. Based on your review and the other commenters I need to check this out as a summer-time contemp.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I've been quite intrigued by this book, but have not really heard much about it. Like you, I was always the girl with the great personality, thereby the one to not date. Haha. I had millions of guy friends, but they asked me to set them up with my friends. This sounds like it could be fun! :)

    ReplyDelete
  15. Elizabeth is one of my go-to authors - whenever I'm in need of a fun book to read, she's my gal! I love her, and I am so glad you enjoyed this book! I simply cannot wait to get my hands onto this! :)

    ReplyDelete
  16. There were several people I know who read this book and didn't love it like I did. I mean, I have my issues with it and was hoping it would be something different, but am pleased with the road it took. I had MAJOR issues with Lexi's parents and was really sad that there are actually parents like that out there. Hurts my heart! Great review!

    ReplyDelete
  17. I've heard mixed things about this book, but your review made me excited. While I'm not sure how I would feel reading about kids beauty pageants, but I do think it would be interesting to get an inside look. And I LOVE girl-boy friendships in books (my favorite right now being Aria and Roar from UTNS - which you have to read ;). I feel like there aren't enough of them. Definitely interested to read this one!

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for leaving a comment! I love seeing what you have to say, and will try to reply (here or on Twitter) as soon as I can :)

LinkWithin

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...