Thursday, June 2, 2011
Cloaked by Alex Flinn
Cloaked follows Johnny, an aspiring shoe designer, who works in his family's shoe repair business in the swankiest hotel in South Beach, Florida. Johnny's dad disappeared 10 years before and, while his mom never gives up hope that he'll come walking through the front door one day, they have a hard time making ends meet. Then one day a party girl princess comes to stay in the hotel and turns her attention to Johnny. She tells him that her brother has been turned into a frog and disappeared. At first Johnny thinks she's crazy, but with some convincing, and a promise of marriage and money, he decides to help her. Along with his best friend Meg, Johnny goes on an adventure he couldn't have dreamed of, encountering giants, witches, golden birds, and animals who used to be human.
I seriously love fairy tale re-tellings (if you can't tell, since I literally crave them at times), but Flinn incorporates details from so many different fairy tales that I was either vaguely familiar with or had never heard of that I got a bit confused at times. While I loved the scale of it, it was hard to follow and that sometimes detracted from the storyline. The setting changes so quickly and so often I couldn't keep track at times.
Despite my negativity, I loved Johnny as a character. The fact that he admits to himself he's only helping the princess because he needs the money is so real. Most people do the same, but act like they only help because it's what they want to do. He also is a bit of a blockhead at times, but aren't we all? He acts like a real person, which many books lack nowadays. Overall, I liked the book. It was definitely good for a light summer read, but don't go into it expected earth-shattering revelations.
Risk a paper cut? If you like fairy tale re-tellings, yes. Otherwise, find something else to read.
Three out of five stars.
To buy: Amazon
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