Thursday, February 3, 2011
The Secret Life of Prince Charming by Deb Caletti
Pages: 322 pages
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing
Publication Date: April 7th 2009
Maybe it was wrong, or maybe impossible, but I wanted the truth to be one thing. One solid thing.
Quinn is surrounded by women who have had their hearts broken. Between her mother, her aunt, and her grandmother, Quinn hears nothing but cautionary tales. She tries to be an optimist -- after all, she's the dependable one, the girl who never makes foolish choices. But when she is abruptly and unceremoniously dumped, Quinn starts to think maybe there really are no good men.
It doesn't help that she's gingerly handling a renewed relationship with her formerly absent father. He's a little bit of a lot of things: charming, selfish, eccentric, lazy...but he's her dad, and Quinn's just happy to have him around again. Until she realizes how horribly he's treated the many women in his life, how he's stolen more than just their hearts. Determined to, for once, take action in her life, Quinn joins forces with the half sister she's never met and the little sister she'll do anything to protect. Together, they set out to right her father's wrongs...and in doing so, begin to uncover what they're really looking for: the truth.
Once again, Deb Caletti has created a motley crew of lovably flawed characters who bond over the shared experiences of fear, love, pain, and joy -- in other words, real life.
Why I Read This: I read this because I had heard of Deb Caletti in passing but never really read anything by her. Then I heard that Sarah Dessen and Deb Caletti books are vaguely similar and I was caught hook, line, and sinker.
Plot: Quinn lives in a house full of women skeptical of true love. They all been hurt or cheated on and have had or is having bad luck with men. The captain of the bunch is Quinn's mother, Mary Louise Hoffman. She was heartbroken after Quinn's father, Barry cheats on her with another woman. After they separate Quinn and her sister Sprout don't keep in touch with him until now. Her father is selfish and unconcerned with anybody but himself. Sprout sees it but Quinn refuses to acknowledge that her father is a pig. Until one day after her father tells her that he won't be helping her pay for college and she sees a statue in her father's living room that wasn't there before his girlfriend, Brie left. She picks it up to see Brie's name on the bottom on the statue. Feeling suspicious, Quinn goes on a search and finds items that her dad has stolen from every women he's ever dated, including her mother's beloved music box. Feeling spiteful and ashamed of her dad's actions, she calls up her stranger sister, Frances Lee and they plan to return all their dad's "most valuable possessions" to the people who love them the most. Along the way she meets, a dark-haired musician, who defies all stereotypes and finally connects with her sister using something they all have in common: their dad.
Characters: Quinn is very headstrong, but in denial about what kind of person her father is. In the growing days that she and her sister spend at his house, she learns the ways of her father. Discovering all the stuff and him telling her that she will have to pay for her college is the last straw and is a great turning point in the book. Quinn takes a big risk by calling her sister Frances Lee, who she's only met a couple of times and is the complete loose opposite of Quinn. Sprout aka Charlotte is Quinn's little sister and is an essential character in this sisterhood handbook. I love her personality in that she had cute little sayings that she learned from her grandmother and that even being the younger sister, she knew crap when she heard it.
Frances Lee is the oldest sister and she is the main source of laughs in part of the book for me. Hearing her dialogue was a huge refreshing difference from Quinn's well read thoughts. She is a driving force behind the plan and has been hurt by their dad the most. Last, but not least, the boy. Jake Kennedy. Quinn first sees him lying on the couch and can't help but stare he's so gorgeous. She automatically judges him based on looks and a serpent tattoo that he is the bad boy type. I can't tell you how she actually meets him because it is the element of surprise that is the best! Jake is sweet and not all bad boy and tells her so. His comments and winks come as a surprise to and completely frazzle Quinn especially after living in a house with a list on the refreigerator warning that flattery is not love. With all these funny and caring people in this book and the letters spacing out events and all the wonderful people they meet on their journey, this book can't help, but be fabulous!
First Line: "When it came to love, my mother's big advice was that there were WARNING SIGNS.
Favorite Line: "It's just, you have really beautiful eyes," he said.
Posted by Keturah Ollie-Hayes at 9:23 PM