17 year-old Kelley Winslow doesn’t believe in Faeries. Not unless they’re the kind that you find in a theatre, spouting Shakespeare—the kind that Kelley so desperately wishes she could be: onstage, under lights, with a pair of sparkly wings strapped to her shoulders. But as the understudy in a two-bit, hopelessly off-off-Broadway production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, wishing is probably the closest she’s going to get to becoming a Faerie Queen. At least, that’s what she thinks... In this fun, urban fantasy, Kelley's off-stage life suddenly becomes as complicated as one of Shakespeare’s plot twists when a nighttime trip to Central Park holds more than meets the mortal eye.I enjoyed Wondrous Strange. It was fun and interesting, and definitely one of the better fairy books out there. The plot got a little boring at times, but I didn't really mind, because the characters were very charming and I liked reading about them. I had a lot of fun with the multiple creatures from the realm of Faerie that I haven't read about since I was in the 4th grade and into The Spiderwick Chronicles (seriously, she has a Kelpie in her bathtub for a good portion of the book).
There were plenty of plot twists that actually surprised me. I mean, when they came I was like "Duh, of course," but I never saw them coming. By the end of the book, not a single character is who you (and Kelley) thought they were. Wondrous Strange was written with one chapter about Kelley and the next about Sonny. We learned the most from the Sonny chapters, mainly because he was actually part of the Faerie world, where Kelley was not (well, he knew more than she did anyways). The sudden discoveries made up for the boring bits, because they managed to keep me on my toes.
The characters were cute. I really liked Sonny, because he was extremely awkward, if only because he wasn't around people of the 21st century all the time. He knew what he wanted to happen, but Kelley refused to believe most of what he said. He was also extremely sweet. He saw Kelley crying in the park (before they knew each other) and gave her a rose to cheer her up. He's just that kind of guy. Kelley was sweet, too, if a little stupid. I don't think she had a mean bone in her body, but that could be potentially bad in New York. I loved her passion for acting. She just wanted to be the best she could, but she would still get nervous in front of those whose opinions mattered to her. She was just very... sweet. I really liked her roommate, Tyff. She was just funny and snarky and was kind of the opposite of Kelley. I just wished we got to see more of her in the book. There were a lot of very kind minor characters from the play Kelley was in, but you'll have to read the book to learn more about them :P
The cover is gorgeous. It's very ethereal, and fits the tone of the book really well. I love cover-Kelley, because she is very similar to how I pictured Kelley (not exactly, but close). It just kind of all works nicely.
I'm giving Wondrous Strange 4 stars, because there were a few parts that bored me (I know, I already said that. I'm just reminding you). The rest of it was very good and fun. If you liked the world of Wicked Lovely and Wings, then you might wanna check this book out!
Before I let you go, there were some quotes I wanted to share:
"He ate my soap." Tyff walked slowly out of the bathroom, arms folded across her chest, the tone of her voice pleasantly conversational. "My eighty-dollar bar of hand-milled Japanese herbal complexion soap. He ate it."
"He also ate your two-dollar bar of Irish Spring. I let him eat that one."
"Tyff, I'm really, really sorry-"
"Actually, I gave it to him to eat." Tyff smiled sweetly.
"I think he might be... following me." (Kelley)
"Okay," Tyff said slowly. "I know you're new to the big city and all but, see, that's not a good thing, Kelley."
"I'm sorry. I didn't mean to startle you." He glanced at her purse. "Please, if you're looking for mace, you don't need to. I... I only wanted to give you this." He held out the rose. "You looked as though you could use something... nice."
Not as great as the Mara Dyer quotes, but still cute :)