Beauty Queens

Teen beauty queens. A lost island. Mysteries and dangers. No access to email. And the spirit of fierce, feral competition that lives deep in the heart of every girl, a savage brutality that can only be revealed by a journey into the heart of non-exfoliated darkness. Oh, the horror, the horror!

When a plane crash strands thirteen teen beauty contestants on a mysterious island, they struggle to survive, to get along with one another, to combat the island’s other diabolical occupants, and to learn their dance numbers in case they are rescued in time for the competition.

As a child, I really enjoyed Lord of the Flies and often wondered how the things would have turned out if the castaways were girls. This book didn’t exactly answer that question as the castaways were teenage US beauty queens, a far cry from preteen public school boys. This book was satire which I think resulted in me absolutely loving this book.

Initially, the book lets the reader know that this world is not our world. There is a somewhat dystopian world with a powerful corporation taking charge. In this world, women seem to exist purely to be beautiful and misogyny is the expectation.

I was the introduced to a whole gang of teenage beauty queens who were someone one dimensional with each taking a very distinct role and a scuffle for power occurred. Miss Texas ended up taking control of the Beauty Queens and was insistant on continuing with their training for the contest. Now, this is where I have to admit that the only name/title that I remember was Miss Texas. Instantly I disliked her because the others wanted to build shelters, find food and water, try to find a way off of the island…but Miss Texas wanted to practice the dance number. I found this annoying initially but it worked as the book was satirical.

I really enjoyed seeing the girls bond after being fierce rivals. A sisterhood was created. I enjoyed reading about the girls growing and gaining confidence in themselves.

There was a discovery on the island that showed the reader that this was no ordinary remote island. Things were a bit off and dangers galore.

Half way through the book, a pirate ship showed up. On this ship we’re the stars of a reality tv show, they were on the run and crashed upon the Beauty Queens’ island. These pirates were arrogant and misogynistic and I hated them. Some later redeemed themselves but this was my least favourite part of the book.

This was such a wild ride of a book. An adventure! It was silly and fun but had a lot of heart. There were some very wise moments hidden between talk of lipgloss and boys. I think I will reread this book when I want a chuckle, I’d like to find more books by this author too.

I wish I knew about this book years ago! I only learned about it recently after reading (and loving) Patricia Wants to Cuddle. I do want to warn that this book includes weights, the weights of the contestants. As a person who received treatment for disordered eating from the ages of 12-30, I found this to take my brain to a bad place despite being 6 years out of treatment. So please be aware of this if you think that this may be harmful to you

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