At the ripe old age of 22, Allison Penny is already sick of life.
Her alcoholic mother berates her at every possible chance. The young woman is
barely making it as a cleaning lady. And she is rooming with a sex fiend
who only serves to remind Allison that her own love life has always and
will always be in the toilet because, in a word, Allison Penny is ugly.
Well, two words. Not just ugly, but fat.
But all that changes one morning when Allison miraculously awakens to find
herself in a new body, one that transcends the supermodel class. Yet
after all those years of being certain that a new appearance would be the
answer to the pain in her heart, Allison-the-beauty discovers that
perfection personified isn't necessarily all that it's cracked up to be.
worked for me:
This was a very funny book that took a tongue-in-cheek look at the
realities of what a person's appearance means in the world--especially
a woman's. The choice of
characters and settings were excellent, even if they weren't always fully
developed. They really helped the reader to delve into the subject
of a caste system based upon personal beauty or lack thereof.
I felt that the author made it easy to relate to Allison, both before and
after her "miracle".
I fully understood the need for Allison-the-ugly to run away into fantasyland and daydream the way
she did. And I have to admit
there was a certain pleasure to riding along with Allison-the-beauty
during her payback times, but the vendettas I enjoyed most weren't a
direct result of her new attractiveness.
The ly adverbs that popped up here and there kept catching my eye, but other than
that I really enjoyed the writing style in this book. Some of the visuals that the
author painted were just wonderful.
Size-wise, prior to turning
into a living Barbie doll, Allison was squat, flat, and flabby with
unattractive features all the way around. But not only females
suffered from beauty discrimination in this novel. Allison's guy pal
Nathan was overlooked many times because he was merely average in
What didn't work for me:
There were times when
reading this book left me feeling downright depressed, but I don't want to
give anything away so I can't tell you why.
I would have liked to have
had some concrete idea of why and how this change occurred in
A great book for the bubble bath or beach, but there is
plenty of deeper thinking here about the nuances of the human psyche that would
make it a terrific subject for a women's studies discussion group.
Warning: there are some coarse words and some sexual
scenarios, as well as weight loss, in this book.
If you liked "Waking Beauty" you might also enjoy
"Love at Large",
"The Way It Is", "Inappropriate Men",
"Coffee and Kung Fu",
"What a Girl Wants",
"Getting Over It",
"Bridget Jones's Diary",
"Good in Bed",
"Last Chance Saloon",
and "Having It and Eating It".
Have you read
this book and have a comment to
make on it? Join a discussion about the book at the Dangerous Curves
or submit a review
to this website.