Monday, July 28, 2008

Airhead by Meg Cabot

I had no clue what was going on for the first 65% of this book. And then it all started coming together in a rush of "wow thisseemsreallyimpossiblebutisstilltotallyawesomeofanide." I was prepared for some pretty intense character development awesome that always comes from the marvelous Meg Cabot. And (surprisesurprise) it happened.

Emerson Watts is a girl with a boy's name who doesn't know what to do with herself. She can't (or won't) live up to her sister's shallow expectations. She has completely fallen for her best friend, Christopher, and doesn't have the confidence to tell him. And her opposition to big-name and big-business isn't supported by anyone close to her. So when her younger sister Frida wants to go the grand opening of the Stark Mega-Store in their SoHo neighborhood, their is no escape for a reluctant Emerson. And when Frida goes off in pursuit of the store's top model for an autograph, her sister is forced to pursue.

A plasma screen television detachs from the ceiling and begins to fall. Emerson lunges to save her sister, a solitary few feet from the shoes of Nikki Howard, the Stark model. Next thing she knows she is waking up in a hospital bed, being abducted by people who seem to have mistaken her for Nikki, and coming to the realization that maybe- just maybe- Emerson Watts is no more.

I was suitably confused for most of this, but was still pretty devoted to finding out what was going on. The mystery of the connection between Emerson and Nikki was completely engrossing. And through the constant discoveries you see more of Emerson coming through. She isn't just your average we-have-read-this-all-before, politically active, who-cares-what-they-think teen girl. She struggles with the things that most people do, which makes her much more easy to relate to. Plus, Meg Cabot has a very particular talent for writing emotions.

The main plot twist was very...err...twisty. At least, I didn't see it coming at all. People of greater intelligence and discernment probably will figure it out before I did, but its still a HA! moment. It also opens up space to a whole new level of character interaction that is really hard to find in "realistic-fiction", even though I'm not sure if this really qualifies for that particular genre title.

I am actually extremely eager for the second book (I won't reveal the name here because it practically tells all) and I can say with confidence that this is my favorite Meg Cabot book so far. Once again, she shows herself flexible and extremely capable of branching into the unexplored nooks and crannies of female-targeted realistic fiction (Has anyone read Jinx?).

I give Airhead 6 out of 7 lightnings. And am pleased that it has opened the door to reading science-fiction once again. Oops. Have I said too much?

Hoping that I Haven't,



Anonymous said...

Hmmm...I didn't really see this as much of a mystery...I mean, I'd read a couple mostly non-spoiler reviews, and maybe part of Meg Cabot's website, and the front flap...I kind of already knew the premise...

It was good though. But I wanted (well, still want, actually) a sequel. Like, now. Because dude Christopher cliffhanger omg it was just getting good...

ambeen said...

I can't wait for the sequel either! Great review!

I've nominated you! Check out my blog for the details. :)

Book Chic said...

Loved this book, as I do all of Meg's novels. Just simply fantastic, and a great new direction for her. I also loved Jinx too, which you mentioned. Great review!!

Ms. Yingling said...

This one really tickled me, but a lot of the readers who have picked it up didn't like it. Now I know they were probably confused. For some reason it made sense to me, so your review was very helpful. Thanks!