Tuesday, January 26, 2010
Review: Wish by Alexandra Bullen
Rating: 2.5 out of 5
Olivia Larsen doesn’t know how she will survive after the death of her more outgoing twin sister, Violet. When her parents move all the way across the country to San Francisco, Olivia stumbles across a mysterious seamstress’ shop and is given three beautiful, magic dresses, each with the ability to grant one wish. What Olivia wants above all else is to have Violet back, but everyone knows that making wishes is more complicated than you think…
Alexandra Bullen’s debut novel, WISH, is a quick and cute read that will appeal best to younger teen readers and fans of modern fairy tales in the style of the movie Enchanted. More experienced readers, however, may be less impressed by the average writing, characters, and plot.
WISH is less a fairy tale than it is a touching story about the complexities and intricacies of two sisters’ relationship with one another. While neither Olivia nor Violet are actually noteworthy as characters, you can’t help but be touched at the way they play off one another, the way Violet looks after Olivia, even after death. WISH is a very human book, and perhaps that may be startling to some, because that is not what we immediately think of with such a fairy tale-esque premise. But the magic element in the novel is muted, allowing interpersonal relationships—with all their ups and downs—to shine through and stand out.
Unfortunately, the writing left a bit to be desired. The prose was uninspiring: there was nothing particularly captivating or enchanting about it. In fact, the blandness of the writing often took away from the cute premise’s potential, leaving behind what felt like an overmanufactured fairy tale.
Still, if you like the idea of a contemporary fairy tale, WISH is good for a quick read.
Kate Brian (The Princess and the Pauper)
Aimee Friedman (Sea Change)
Jackson Pearce (As You Wish)
Overall Rating: 2.5 out of 5
Cover discussion: 3 out of 5 - Why are all the cover models for these YA books so unrealistically beautiful? That's not how I pictured Olivia looks like at all, though the color, title font, and stars are rather pretty.
Scholastic / Jan. 12, 2010 / Hardcover / 336pp. / $17.99
Received for blog tour from SME and Scholastic.
Stay tuned for an author interview and giveaway opportunity!