By Maryrose Wood
Morgan Rawlinson recently discovered she’s the goddess Morganne. It led to a number of interesting adventures in Ireland, but she has not had contact with any faeries since returning to Connecticut. She’s learning to drive, helping to plan the junior prom, and trying to explain to her little sister Tammy whether or not Santa is real. Then Colin, her guide and crush from Ireland, comes to UConn for a robotics competition. Unfortunately, Morgan’s favor made him a target to the faeries.
Morgan immediately sets to work, wanting to free Colin before the faeries exhaust him to death. It’s fun to watch her go for it because she’s inventive and puts the pieces together quickly – no missing obvious solutions. At the same time, the riddles she's faced with aren't overly easy to solve. (Rereading the novel, I even discovered meaning to a clue I missed the first time! I love it when there's more to find the second time around.)
The fantasy elements blend well with the other story threads. They even work with her parents fighting over lawn gnomes! (I'm on the mom's side. Yard ornaments are not my thing.) Nor is it my thing when authors use magic in their novel when it serves no purpose to the story, so it's nice to see how Maryrose Wood makes it mesh well with a high school girl's ordinary life in Connecticut.
I'm also partial to faerie stories, and I like Wood's faeries. They don't really care what happens to humans but they aren't randomly vicious, and they've got a wicked sense of humor. Try not to laugh when Morgan meets them at the grocer's. She also finishes the book with a few revelations that make me hope for another book.
For those who haven't read WHY I LET MY HAIR GROW OUT and fear they'll be lost, don't be. Wood introduces past story elements clearly so that HOW I FOUND THE PERFECT DRESS can easily stand on its own. Of course, you'll still want to pick up the first book to read more about Morgan and Colin.
HOW I FOUND THE PERFECT DRESS is a light-hearted and comedic novel that works well as a faerie tale and as a school story. Plus, it features a dress any girl would feel fabulous in! (As well as some clothing choices that aren't for the faint of heart . . . )
HOW I FOUND THE PERFECT DRESS is in stores now, along with her other new book, MY LIFE: THE MUSICAL. You can find out more on Wood's website or her MySpace.
Leave a comment on this post for an entry to win HOW I FOUND THE PERFECT DRESS. Comment on tomorrow's guest blog by Maryrose Wood for an extra entry. Don't forget, there are contests all week!