Thursday, July 22, 2010

Review: Pretty Face

Pretty Face
By Mary Hogan
Publication date: 2008


That's what I am. A funny girl. A friend. Nobody's girlfriend. The girl with the pretty face. Hayley wishes she could love living in Santa Monica, blocks from the beach, where every day—and everybody—is beautiful and sunny. But she just doesn't fit in with all the blond, superskinny Southern California girls who have their plastic surgeons on speed dial. Hayley is smart and witty and has such a pretty . . . face. Translation: Don't even think about putting on a bikini, much less dating superhot Drew Wyler. A bikini will never be flattering, and Drew will never think of her as more than a friend. Just when Hayley feels doomed to live her life in the fat lane, her parents decide to send her to Italy for the summer—not for school, not for fat camp, just for fun. It's there, under the Italian sun, that Hayley's vision of herself starts to change. She's curvy, not fat. Pizza isn't evil. And life is so much more than one-size-fits-all. Who knows? Once Hayley sees herself in a new light, maybe the girl with the pretty face will finally find true amore.

My review:

Hayley's summer in Italy is a life changing event. Her mother's best friend Patrice and her family help Hayley are a good influence on her. Hayley is surprised at how they savor meals and the relaxed pace of everyday living. At home, Hayley was a slave to the scale and to all kinds of negative thoughts about herself. Here, she begins to enjoy life and to appreciate herself. She also meets Enzo, a handsome Italian guy who likes her as she is.

Pretty Face made me long to visit Italy, eat lots of Italian food, drink plenty of Italian wine, and fall in love with the scenery. I thought this was a great story and I really liked Hayley's character. I enjoyed seeing her bloom away from the pressure of Santa Monica and her mom. Hayley grows up a lot over the summer and she is even able to understand her mom a little better. It was great to see her experience her first love as well.

I read and reviewed this book for Body Image and Self Perception Month. At the beginning of the book Hayley has low self esteem about her body image. She eats for comfort when she gets upset which doesn't help things and she hates being known for her sense of humor only or for having a "pretty face". It was nice to watch Hayley adjust her attitude about her body and learn to embrace her curves.
Readalikes: Secrets of Truth and Beauty by Megan Frazer, The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big Round Things by Carolyn Mackler, Keeping the Moon by Sarah Dessen, A Field Guide for Heartbreakers by Kristen Tracy


  1. this book sounds great! i love that it teaches girls how to embrace their bodies. wonderful review!

  2. Aw, what a great-sounding book! I love the topic it deals with. Wonderful review!

  3. I loved this line of your review: "Pretty Face made me long to visit Italy, eat lots of Italian food, drink plenty of Italian wine, and fall in love with the scenery."
    I love it! Great review!

  4. This book sounds inspiring! I love books where the character realizes she's fine the way she is. And Enzo? Yay for foreign boys :)
    Adding this to my TBR pile!
    Great review!
    Kerleisha @ Collegiate Bookworm

  5. I love the sound of this one, the topic is definitely a worthwhile one. Great review =)


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