Thursday, January 19, 2006

I've been a fan of Meg Cabot's since her first book, The Princess Diaries, came out. And while I lost interest in Mia's adventures somewhere around #3, I've read all of Meg's 1-800-WHERE-ARE-YOU series (written as Jenny Carroll) and loved them, and I read Teen Idol as soon as it came out. I check out Meg's blog because she makes me laugh. And the Mediator series is one of my all time favorites - if you haven't read this one, go out and get it RIGHT NOW!
I have to admit I've been a little wary of Meg's proclivity for sequels/series, and after reading her diary post today (she's having trouble coming up with ideas for a sequel to Avalon High because the story really ends there - why does there have to be a sequel?) I'm even more alarmed. Still, I'm hoping to get my hands on the library's copy of Avalon High, Meg's new book for teens, as soon as the student who practically stole it off the new book cart brings it back, and I nabbed Size 12 Is Not Fat before anyone else could. It's vintage Cabot, but with a twist: this is the first book in her new mystery series. It's aimed at an adult audience, but I know it will be totally popular with (and totally appropriate for) my high school students.
Anyway, the story goes like this: washed up, size 12 former teen pop star sensation Heather Wells has found a job as an assistant director at one of the dorms - I mean residence halls - at New York University. While living with her ex-fiance's brother, she's waiting out her 6 month probationary period so the college will start paying for her degree. But while she's waiting, tragedy strikes when one of the co-eds dies in a bizarre elevator surfing accident. Heather's not convinced this shy, quiet girl was the type to jump off a moving elevator, and when another girl meets a similar end, she's even more convinced something's not right. But the police aren't listening to her, and even Cooper, her very-hot PI landlord, thinks she might be concocting this story for the attention. But Heather's sure she's right, and she's willing to risk her own life to prove it.
Heather is definitely a Meg-heroine, willing to voice those thoughts many of us have but are afraid to say for fear of sounding, well, shallow. I figured the mystery out before the end, but it wasn't so obvious that the book wasn't worth it. In fact, I rather enjoyed this fast, fluffy read (great mind candy!) and I"m looking forward to Heather's next adventure.


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