Sunday 14 September 2008

Review of Diary of a Teenage Faerie Princess by C. B. Smith

The following review was done at the request of the author:

My Review of Diary of a Teenage Faerie Princess:

Diary of a Teenage Faerie Princess
is a Young Adult novel, and I am definitely not the target audience for this book (I have not been a young adult for quite some time).

Still, I read it with an open mind and it reasonably managed to keep my attention. It has an irreverent, off-kilter style and showed a charming, witty attitude. The novel does read much like a teenage diary: full of disjointed musings, personal observations, philosophical opinions, and a pervading preoccupation with sexual thoughts and deeds. Regrettably though, the tone is often uneven and wanders off into unrelated tangents, even introducing characters that appear and disappear without reason.

The book begins with a slightly whacked-out review on the origins of the universe, before introducing the reader to Jaynie, the seventeen year old main character. From there we are swirled in the maelstrom of her personality:

“But what was a poor girl to do? When she wasn’t trammeling through town on her skateboard; shocking pedestrians, frightening to near heart attack, flying into intersections at brake screeching speeds, things could get…well…BORING!”

Readers are then plunged into the escapades of this unique girl, beginning as Jaynie goes questing for new shoes (sadly hampered by her large toes):

“Her puffed-as-a-passionate-puffer-fish pose began deflating. Right there in front of her eyes the beautiful red and yellow balloon of excitement she had erected went limp and flaccid like a wet noodle. She had meant to buy some shoes. Had money and was not afraid to use it. But somewhere along the road to this moment at the Bigguns Shoe Emporium her big toe had got so big she not could get a shoe to fit her.”

Jaynie’s shoe quest leads her on to an even larger pursuit: to find her long-missing mother. She discovers a previously unknown Faerie heritage and strange allies as the reader descends (literally) into the land of Faerie:

“A quick push from behind and Jaynie stepped through the door and fell through into a black space that pulled her in like a mega power vacuum. And suddenly she was racing full speed down a slide, or chute, or something that took her breath away, terrifying and reducing her to a droning scream, “AAAIIEEE….”
If there were any doubt as to her ability to scream with ear blasting power for long duration, all doubt ended with this performance. There were only two other times in her life where a scream approaching but not equaling this magnitude had been emitted from her tender throat.”

There, she explores her new world and embarks on a series of escapades that lead to a clash between her allies and the darker forces of the faerie world. It is during this conflict she finds an end to her search:

“Arriving finally at the imprisonment quarters was in the end a bit anticlimactic. Where Jaynie had expected a full-scale high tech lockdown of the Star Wars variety, what she found was a grim, foul smelling enclosure, more in keeping with medieval dungeons than modern penitentiary schemes.”

Diary of a Teenage Faerie Princess does have its problems, mostly in the beginning chapters, but it also has merit in its twisty hodgepodge of well-written madness. The author C. B. Smith has created a book of droll, intricate chaos that bounces off a sugar rush.

I am not sure the book’s quirky style will captivate everyone, but it will, I suspect, greatly appeal to its target audience.

Diary of a Teenage Faerie Princess is available now through Createspace and should be available on shortly.

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