Review: Will Work for Prom Dress by Aimee Ferris

Reviewed by First Mate Keira

Title: Will Work for Prom Dress
Author: Aimee Ferris
Format: Paperback
Page Count: 272 pages
Grade Reading Level: Ages 12-16

Summary: Quigley Johnson and her best friend Anne Parisi have joined together to get jobs, buy dresses, find dates, and go to prom. It’s all part of the betterment plan. But playing a corpse or dressing as pickle aren’t exactly glamorous, that’s why when Anne’s designer mom offers them positions as models for fledgling designers they both jump on it. They like 2 young men there, but with two boys courting them at school it’s hard to know who to ask as their formal date.

Why I started this book:

Goodreads recommended it to me based on books in my TBR pile.


  • How Quigley handles David throughout the book and especially at the end when his pranks are hurting others.
  • Poor Quigley goes through a lot of minor mortifications – face full of dressing as the corpse, having to dress as a pickle, etc. She gets through it all with aplomb.
  • I like how she gets her art focus and pursues it almost absently. Additionally I love how her anger at life gives her a great idea for a speech.

Toss up:

  • Anne is sort of a good friend. There are things she does well, like stick with Quigley through thick and thin, but then there’s a lot she does not. One of which is leaving Quigley behind while chasing after boys. She also gets into a scrape with the police for vandalism.


  • Zander was really harsh at one point in the book and honestly I don’t feel Quigley should have gotten back together with him, despite his reasons. They could have been friends. I would have preferred that honestly.
  • This book was one I picked up and put down a bit, but once I pushed through the slow part it was smooth sailing.

Buy: Will Work for Prom Dress

Rating: 3 Treasure Chests

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Review: The False Princess by Eilis O’Neal

by First Mate Keira

Title: The False Princess
Author: Eilis O’Neal
Format: Hardback
Page Count: 319 pages
Grade Reading Level: Ages 11-19

Summary: Nalia is a shy bookworm princess whose only close friend is her best friend Kerinan, the son of an earl. On her 16th birthday, Nalia is told she’s a substitute princess; a stand-in, someone to take the place of the real princess while her life was in danger. But now the danger that the prophecy predicted had passed without a hiccup, they didn’t need her anymore. Her parents are suddenly the king and queen of Thorvaldor and Nalia turns from beloved daughter into something the cat dragged in. She’s kicked out immediately with few possessions and a small bag of coins for her services to the crown. The only thing that’s truly hers is her new name… Sinda, but who on earth is Sinda?

Why I started this book:

I saw it on the shelf in the library and thought I would like the book because the cover reminded me of the original cover for Ella Enchanted.


  • Keirnan’s loyalty to Sinda. He wasn’t in love with her because she was a princess and could elevate his status and that of his family. He loved her when her position as the heir to the crown would have hurt his chances with her and now that she’s a commoner, nothing will stand in his way to keep her safe and reveal his feelings.
  • The fun old fashion names: Orianne. Sinda (I really thought at first this would be turned into something like Sindarella), Mika, etc… and the names of the kingdom and major city Vivaskari. They’re fun to repeat aloud.
  • It’s got it all. There’s magic, and romance, and journeys, and self discovery and flare. I love the world, the pacing, and the plot.


  • The “Nameless God” is a pagan god. The god is said to have infinite wisdom and yet he can’t see all things or the outcome of the Sidna’s journey. It’s frustrating to say the least.
  • Tyr. At first I liked him, but in the end I’m glad his pursuit of Sinda didn’t get very far beyond a single kiss.
  • The end where somebody nice dies. :(

Buy: The False Princess

Rating: 4 Treasure Chests

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GIVEAWAY + Review: Croc Capers (Bindi Wildlife Adventures, Book 7) by Bindi Irwin and Chris Kunz

Reviewed by First Mate Keira

Title: Croc Capers (Bindi Wildlife Adventures, Book 7)
Author: Bindi Irwin and Chris Kunz
Format: Paperback
Page Count: 112 pages
Grade Reading Level: Ages 7 and up

Summary: Bindi and Robert Irwin are visiting one of their favorite places in the world when their idyllic location and crocodile captures is interrupted by some noisy new neighbors.

Why I started this book:

I was offered the book by the publisher and it sounded cute.


  • Bindi, one of the authors (and the heroine!) is a young girl, age 13. Woo! Have you seen her on the Discovery Channel?
  • Crocodile-tagging adventures are cool. I can’t imagine wrestling one can you? Yikes!
  • The fact sheets at the end of the story are great for sharing fun tidbits about the animals.
  • The great bowerbird event was pretty neat. Not everything is as it seems! Good lesson to remember!


  • The book could do better to quickly share who is who for those who haven’t been in Bindi’s world before this, but it is relatively minor.

Last Minute Thoughts: Visit for more from Bindi and Robert and the activity guide for more fun with the books.

Buy: Croc Capers: Bindi Wildlife Adventures

Rating: 4.5 Treasure Chests

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GIVEAWAY: You could win all 7 books in the BINDI WILDLIFE ADVENTURES series! Open to residents from the US or Canada. Ends August 10, 2012. Enter by leaving a comment! Tell us about one of your wildlife adventures!

Movie Review: Easy A starring Emma Stone, Penn Badgley, Amanda Bynes, and Dan Byrd

by First Mate Keira

Title: Easy A
Director: Will Gluck
Run Time: 92 minutes
Rated: PG-13

Summary: Olive Penderghast (Emma Stone) is invisible to the student population of Ojai High until one day a popular Christian leader at the school (Amanda Bynes) overhears Olive tell a fib to her best friend in the girl’s bathroom. Overnight Olive goes from invisible good girl to the most talked about floozy in school. Olive decides she likes the attention and offers to help her gay friend Brandon (Dan Byrd) in order to keep up appearances. Olive will soon learn that there can be too much of a good thing.

Why I watched this movie:

I had to do a The Scarlet Letter presentation when I was in school, which I still have lying around somewhere. It was a silent film reenactment done between me and my two friends. I’m sure it’s hilariously bad. Anyway I wanted to see Easy A because of the high school connection and also because of how cool it looked. Easy A totally blew my school project out of the water… lol


  • Who knew the The Scarlet Letter could be so much fun? Easy A, like Clueless, is a modern retelling of a classic novel with a strong young adult teen thread that makes it both educational and hilariously entertaining. I really like the idea of taking classic novels and giving them a modern twist.
  • Emma Stone is fabulous in this role. She’s feisty, quirky, funny, and thoroughly entertaining. She’s really coming into her own as an actress. I hope to see much more of her in the future in roles as good as this one.
  • Amanda Bynes is a perfectly awful good girl. I love it. Bynes really breaks out of her mold as the good girl sweetly quirky heroine and manages to do it while still portraying a “good girl.” I love it!
  • The dialogue, script, storyline, acting, it was all great!


  • Brandon (Dan Byrd) was probably my least favorite character. Mostly due to the ridiculously bad sex scene. It’s funny, but Byrd’s acting in it, is just over the top for me.
  • I don’t get why telling the teacher about his cheating spouse is a bad thing? Dude – the woman has an STD – that alone should be reason to tell him… not they they were having sex.
  • Todd (Penn Badgley) should have had a larger part. He’s slightly too marginalized for my tastes.

Last Minute Thoughts: Other than a few quibbles, Easy A is an A+ movie!

Buy: Easy A

Rating: 5 Treasure Chests

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Review: Geek Charming by Robin Palmer

by First Mate Keira

Title: Geek Charming
Author: Robin Palmer
Format: Paperback
Page Count: 338
Grade Reading Level: Grades 7-11

Summary: Dylan Schoenfield is the most popular girl in school and is dating the most popular boy. Girls want to be her and who can blame them? She’s got everything… wealth, looks, and the hottest handbag on the market. When she accidentally tosses it into the mall fountain she begs Josh Rosen, a geeky boy from school, to go in and grab it for her. He holds out until she promises to help with his film project… and then in classic Frog Prince fairytale style, Dylan retracts her offer until daddy makes her go through with it. Is disaster looming in the future or will everything turn out all right?

Why I started this book:

I started this book because I read and enjoyed Cindy Ella.


  • Dylan has been so wrapped up in being popular that she’s totally removed from reality. Diva doesn’t begin to describe her. She says a lot of thoughtless things which come out very mean but her heart’s good.
  • Josh keeps his promise to show Dylan and the popular kids in a fair light. Too bad he accidentally grabs the wrong DVD for the premiere of the documentary.
  • That Josh gets with his dream girl, Amy Loubalu, and that Amy is a nice forgiving girl who befriends Dylan again after Dylan’s fall from grace.
  • Josh and Dylan’s budding friendship and bonding over Woody Allen and Everything But the Kitchen Sink Specials.
  • Dylan’s helpful and kindly meant makeover for Josh taking him from super nerd to geek chic.


  • Josh is a hypochondriac who checks out every minor phantom thing out on WebMD and is completely hooked on his inhaler. He turns that inhaler into a security blanket and uses it for stress, embarrassment, and nervousness. Addicted much?
  • Josh’s friend Steven is a jerk who turns the popularity documentary into Revenge of the Nerds without thought to the damage it would do.
  • Dylan’s friends are hypocrites. Lisa and Hannah both hold Dylan’s shallowness and casual thoughtlessness against her but they are just as bad.
  • Dylan’s popular surfer boyfriend is the worst boyfriend ever and Dylan’s self denial about the situation was old before it started.

Buy: Geek Charming

Rating: 3.5 Treasure Chests

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Review: Justin Bieber: First Step 2 Forever (100% Official) by Justin Bieber

by Captain Lyaf Yarr
Title: Justin Bieber: First Step 2 Forever (100% Official)
Author: Justin Bieber
Format: Hardcover
# of pages: 240
Grade Reading Level: Ages 9-12

Summary: This book is an autobiography by the hottie himself Justin Bieber! He talks about his life as a normal Canadian, to how it got all started, to how it is like now. He goes through many normal every day experiences and even he screws up at times! But that is okay. (I mean, how else are you supposed to get through life?). Even though he is wildly famous and doesn’t exactly have a regular life he really is just a normal kid (minus the millions of ‘Beliebers’ and his packed schedule.) Justin encourages all of his fans to always follow their dreams and to believe in themselves!

Why I Started the Book:

I started this book because duh! it is Justin Bieber! How can you not read his amazing book? Come on!


  • I loved the pictures! Only someone as hot as Justin Bieber could be in pictures that amazing! They were great, I even went back and admired them (a lot) after I finished reading.
  • I love the parts where Justin sounds like such a fail. It is so cute! And he does not act like everything is ruined or like it is the end of the world. When he does fail he brushes it off and moves on with his life.
  • Two of the many things this book has taught me:
    1. Justin is even more ‘scrum-diddly-umptious’ than I thought he was (which was A LOT but now it’s even more!)
    2. Never (Say Never) order spaghetti on a date ;)
  • I liked reading about Justin and his friends and family (also including his extended family/wolf pack). They were obviously very close and had a great loving relationship with one another. They were always there for each other and supported Justin throughout his whole career.
  • It was pretty easy to read this book. I got sucked into it once I started, but I think it was because of how he wrote it. It was all very straight forward and down to earth. He doesn’t make anything a mystery and he states his personal opinions which I love!
  • I actually did learn a lot from reading his book. I wasn’t sure if I would because I thought I knew everything about Justin Bieber! (Just kidding.) There’s defiantly a lot of fun and interesting facts to discover.
  • Justin is such an uber inspiration.

Buy: Justin Bieber: First Step 2 Forever (100% Official)

Last minute thoughts: I hope he writes another book and makes another movie about his life, because I can’t get enough of him!

Are you a Justin Bieber fan?

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Book Rating: I give this book 5 Treasure Chests!

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