Saturday, October 18, 2008
At Face Value by: Emily Franklin
Total: Three stars.
Cute, light, fun, witty. These are some words I would use to describe At Face Value, which finds Cyrie Bergerac, 17, falling in love with someone she shouldn't.
A modern take on the Cyrano de Bergerac tale, At Face Value reads like a movie marathon of high school-set romantic comedies.
Cyrie, a senior at Weston High, is a near-perfect student: she gets outstanding grades, is a lead reporter for the Weston Word, is best friends with the popular and beautiful Leyla and has a good relationship with her parents. However, her appearance is less than flawless.
Namely, her nose. And it's size.
Although entirely predictable - from Chapter One, even, it's easy to figure out the ending - Franklin's novel is saccharine sweet and a good weekend read. It's not exactly the next modern classic, but the prose is often elegant and the wording is lovely.
Acceptance and inner beauty are two major themes within this book, along with true love and the meaning of friendship. None of these issues are really expanded upon further than expected and the ending ties everything together far two cleanly. Not a must-read, but definitely a should-read.
I'll leave you with a quote from the novel:
It's just I can't help it. Sometimes the words rush out, like water breaking free of a dam.