Goodreads // Amazon
Published June 2, 2015: SparkPress
This book was received in part of the BookSparks Summer Reading Challenge. This did not affect my review.
Seventeen-year-old Melanie Kennicut is beautiful. Her entire life revolves around this beauty because her overly controlling mother has been dragging her to casting calls and auditions since she was four years old. According to Joanne Kennicut, Melanie was born to follow in her footsteps.
But Melanie never wanted this life. When a freak car accident leaves her with facial lacerations that will require plastic surgery, she can't help but wonder if this is the answer to her prayers. For the first time in her life, she has a chance to live like a normal teenager--at least for a little while--away from the photo shoots and movie sets that have dominated her entire existence.
But after Melanie allows her best friend to come to the house to see her, Joanne decides to hide her daughter in Montana for the remainder of the summer. There, Melanie won't be seen by anyone they know, and her face will heal in time for the scheduled surgery in late August. Joanne’s plan backfires, however, when Melanie meets Sam, a Native American boy hired by the home's owner to tend to the property. Sam is nothing like the Hollywood boys Melanie knows--he¹s poor, his father's a drunk who possesses a bizarre gift inherited from a Kootenai Shaman, and his only brother disappeared into the mountains after the death of their mother eight years before.
What transpires over a mere 36 hours after Sam and Melanie meet changes both of their lives in ways they never thought possible.
Melanie is beautiful.
After an accident, scars coat her face like trees in a forest. There isn’t a place where they aren’t. Her mother controls her life, and is horrified by Melanie’s appearance. Because of this she has her husband book a trip to the middle of nowhere. In the middle of nowhere, Melanie meets a person who doesn’t see her for her face---beautiful or not. Melanie has to figure out if she wants to be beautiful, or find out what else is out there for her. But, of course, nothing is ever that simple.
BEAUTIFUL GIRL was short. Like, super short. Goodreads says it is 150 pages, but it didn’t even feel like that. I don’t particularly mean that as a compliment. I don’t know if my biggest complaint is the instantaneous love (falling head over heels in a need kind of way) or the lack of feelings I had toward Melanie or her mother or her brother or her said love interest. I don’t really have much to say about this novel because, even though a bunch happened, it didn’t feel like a whole bunch happened. Does that even make any sense? I suppose there was a girl trying desperately to break free, even if she didn’t actually know what she was trying to break free from. I suppose that the love the necessary in order for her to realize that she was worth something more than her face.
I suppose her mother needs to be redeemed. But, (of course there is a but) I can’t actually say I liked any of the events. They felt very two-dimensional. I didn’t find myself falling for Sam. He was a beacon for Melanie. A needed light. But I really wish that she didn’t fall so fast.
This book needed to slow down. Put on the brakes. Sit down for a second. Take a nap. It was just so, so fast paces to the point where it felt very rushed. It just wasn’t my cup of tea---the book was just two rushed and I couldn’t get the feeling of being connected to any of the characters.