Google+ YA Romantics: Just Finished Reading ... Miss Fortune Cookie by Lauren Bjorkman

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Just Finished Reading ... Miss Fortune Cookie by Lauren Bjorkman

Miss Fortune Cookie
by Lauren Bjorkman
Published by Henry Holt BYR
On November 13, 2012

Source: bought



My summary: High school senior Erin is obsessed with Chinese culture. She was born in China and her two best friends, Linny and Mei, are Chinese. But Erin's not -- her family tree traces back to Ireland. So Erin dyes her hair black and secretly writes a blog called Miss Fortune Cookie, on which she dispenses advice that's part Confucian wisdom, part fortune cookie wisdom, and part teen snark. As she and her friends wait for their college admissions letters, they'll face strains to their friendship, to their romantic relationships, and to their family ties.

My take: I'm drawn to quirky books, and Miss Fortune Cookie has an offbeat and original premise. I loved the realistic relationship between these three girls -- the book really captures that strange mix of love and competitiveness that can sometimes characterize female friendships. Lauren Bjorkman gets the whole Girl Triangle thing just right. This book was also funny --there's a whole subplot involving an elopement and an extended chase scene that's both wacky and entertaining, plus some hilarious running jokes involving Pokemon and a martini. Of course, I loved the fact that Erin was a blogger and advice columnist.

But Miss Fortune Cookie isn't all laughs -- the book tackles some serious issues as well. As the girls wait for their letters of acceptance -- or rejection -- from colleges, they have to deal with both parental expectations and their own hopes and dreams. Mei is first generation American, and her mom insists on Harvard or bust. Erin has promised Linny that the two of them will attend Berkeley together. Of course, nothing turns out exactly as the girls expect.

At times, I did feel that there was a lot going on plot-wise, and as a result, some parts of the book seemed disjointed. For example, there's a subplot involving a vaguely defined local protest by a equally vaguely described "hate group." I wished the protest had been directed at something directly connected to the characters or the plot. I was also quite surprised when two of the characters considered changing their college plans because of their boyfriends, especially since one of the girls had just met the guy in question.

But those very minor quibbles aside, I really enjoyed reading Miss Fortune Cookie and appreciated its original premise, Lauren Bjorkman's humorous writing, and the book's realistic, likeable characters. If you're in the mood for something full of humor and charm, definitely check this book out!

20 comments:

  1. I adore books with strong female friendships-much more typical of my high school experience than a love triangle. I will need to look for this at my library.

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    1. What? You weren't in a love triangle in high school?
      LOL I think most of us in high school just wanted one person interested in us....

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  2. Oh, it sounds just as cute and funny as I was hoping! :D I got to check out an excerpt of it, and now I KNOW I have to read the whole thing. So glad that you enjoyed it and it only had minor issues for you!

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    1. Thoroughly enjoyed it! Definitely check it out!

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  3. Never heard of this books. Sounds interesting. I like books with realistic issues as well as sarcastic humor. Thanks for the review :)

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  4. This sounds good and definitely quirky. Go girl friendships! There aren't enough of those featured in YA.

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    1. I know, right?
      Usually in YA heroine has either a) one wacky, irrepressible friend or b) a whole group of friends I can't keep straight.
      Loved the trio of friendship here!

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  5. I've not heard of this one before! I don't usually read quirky books but sometimes one will interest me. I do love reading about strong friendships. :)

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    1. Well, maybe quirky isn't exactly the right word. I was just happy to find an original premise.
      And I did like the friendships in this one!

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  6. I have been hearing a lot of mixed things about this one. It's obviously one of those love it or hate it books. It sounds interesting, but I don't think I would make time to fit it in. Great review!

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    1. I seem to be reading a lot of those lately :)

      I think that when a book or the characters are quirky, it can be hit or miss. Luckily this one was a hit for me!

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  7. I've heard about this book but I've been a little hesitant to pick it up. Maybe I'm just judging the book by it's cover but it doesn't really call my attention.
    World of Books

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    1. The cover does seem a little young for YA. Young but cute!

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  8. I've been debating trying out this book, but it sounds like it'd probably be something I would like for sure! Cute and simple cover too :) Thanks for sharing!

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  9. This is the first time I'm hearing about this book! It sounds really good! Thanks for sharing :)

    Jesse @ Pretty in Fiction

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  10. Ooh great review Jen! I love the cover and story! And I'm also part of the book blitz for this book! :))

    Happy Reading Jen!

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  11. I hadnt heard of this one until now, and it sounds like a good story about friendship regardless of the few issues.

    Brandi from Blkosiner’s Book Blog

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  12. I've been looking forward to your review for this. I do like funny added to the mix. Now to just get my hands on a copy of MISS FORTUNE COOKIE.

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  13. As the mother of two daughters I cringes at the changing college plans for boyfriends plot. Overall this sounds delightful! Great review!

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