Book Review: The Clique #13 — My Little Phony
Well, from the ~20 books I’m reading simultaneously, I finished this one first. Even though it’s #13 in a series (excluding the 5 spin-offs, a prequel, and a companion book), I’ll go ahead and post a brief review for it… because I say so. :V Next up is a Twilight
rant review! (…yikes.)
The fact that this book’s title is related to my previous post is an awesome coincidence. \o/
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Massie Block, the queen bee of eighth grade, is super nervous about kissing her ninth-grade boyfriend, Landon Crane. Claire Lyons is the only person she’d confide in, but Massie is still mad at her for ditching the Pretty Committee to hang out with her new ninth-grade friends. She concocts a plan to scare away Claire’s new friends, but she better watch out; Claire is done with Massie’s bullying, and it might be the time for a revolution… for the dawn of a new Claire-a!
The back blurb points out a “fake lice scare” that’s supposed to scare away Claire’s new friends. (Oh, Massie, will you ever learn?) Fortunately, the rest of the book is harder to guess.
Massie’s role here is pretty much the same as usual: be horrible and shock the reader, then be sympathetic and regain the reader’s trust. Claire’s role is also the same: claim to be a good person, then act like Massie’s evil clone from hell and be all sadface when everything doesn’t totally go your way. >:U …yeah, I like Massie more than Claire. I like anyone more than Claire. Even Dylan, who, at some point in the series, does nothing but burp! Nnngh. Okay, maybe Claire is tied with Layne… man, that girl is annoying! I’ll take Massie and her horrible catty friends over the “innocent” kids any day. Thankfully (slightslightslight spoiler don’t highlight if you don’t want to know): Massie comes out on top! >8’D 8V
The other characters are okay. Not much emphasis on Kristen, Dylan, or Alicia. The book is pretty much split between Massie and Claire. I did enjoy reading this, though. Young adult novels are great for a quick and fun read, but not for depth; the Clique series is pretty much ideal for reluctant readers, girly girls, and pretty much every tween girl, but that’s about it (where do I fit in?!). It’s in the same vein as the other books, so if you hated the last couple of Clique books, it’s probably not going to get much better for you.
(Spoiler-free reviews… asdfghjkl, they’re not for me. @___@)
1. general information
name: Clique: My Little Phony
author: Lisi Harrison
number in series: 13
genre: young adult.
narrative point of view: third person.
narrative tense: past tense.
2. more thoughts
readability: Awesome. Despite a few awkwardly written bits here and there, everything flows together well. It’s a pretty short book, and the language is very simple (but not dumbed down, à la PLL… /still bitter), which makes for a great page-turner (unless catty middle-schoolers isn’t the type of lit you dig!). Instead of forcing myself to read, I literally stayed up until 5am one night (day?), just to keep plowing through this book.
what I enjoyed: Reads exactly like the other books. Good writing. Interesting to see what happens to the characters, since I’ve invested so much emotionally (*has all the books… :V*) into them. Kills time well.
what I disliked: Overall, even though it’s not a disappointment, My Little Phony is yet another Clique book that coasts just above average. Kind of reminds me of shows I watch like Gossip Girl and Pretty Little Liars: while I’m watching it, I’m loving it, but when I think back on it it’s like… huh, you know, actually, it wasn’t that special. :Va
hooked on the series: Yes. The twist ending (unless you picked up the hints, which I totally glazed over) made me immediately reach for my copy of the next book — and the last in the Clique series — A Tale of Two Pretties. Individually, the books are somewhat weak, but as a series, it’s solid for its genre (young adult has disappointed me countless times).
premise: By now, I’m buying the books no matter how weak the premise is. My Little Phony’s isn’t exactly impressive, but it’s not bad. 4/10
characters: Strange, but the Clique series is one of the only series I enjoy reading while hating most characters. Claire and Layne are as insufferable as ever. If I could reach into the book and punch them, I would. Luckily for them, they’re fictional characters. 6/10.
plot: I was expecting the book to disappoint me (as I do with every Clique book), but as usual, it didn’t. Didn’t wow me, but I don’t expect this kind of young adult novel to rock my world. It managed to keep me turning the page. I like how it ended. 7/10.
writing style: And here is what keeps me reading the books. The constant pop culture references can get rather tedious, but Lisi Harrison has proven herself to be a capable writer. Personally, I find her strongest point to be description and weakest to be dialogue.
There are some clunky, awkward parts that would only annoy a picky reader (the same word used close together, using the characters’ names a lot, forced usage of Clique-specific vocabulary, etc) as well as some errors (misplaced punctuation, etc, not really the writer’s fault), but the interesting and easy-to-read writing style is what carries the book. 8.5/10.
OVERAL GRADE (not an average): 6.5/10.
4. final impression…
Not a mindblowing book, but a fun, easy read. After my depressing experience with Pretty Little Liars, a book with an enjoyable writing style was welcome. Definitely fits right into the Clique series.