Friday, May 30, 2014

[Review: Vivian Divine Is Dead by Lauren Sabel]

"Vivian Divine is Dead"
Author: Lauren Sabel
Series: ?
Pages: 288
Genre: YA, Contemporary , Mystery
Date Published: June 3rd, 2014
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Format Read: eARC provided by publisher (via Edelweiss) for honest review


Filled with surprising twists and poignant moments, Lauren Sabel brings a fresh new voice to contemporary fiction with Vivian Divine Is Dead. Creepy, clever, funny, and romantic.

When a death threat arrives with teen celebrity Vivian Divine's fan mail, Vivian has no choice but to go on the run to Mexico. She soon discovers, though, that her Oscar-nominated performance killing villains on-screen did nothing to prepare her for escaping a madman in real life. Some people say he's a hero, others tremble in his presence, but one thing is clear: he won't stop until Vivian is in his grasp. Why didn't she pay more attention during those judo lessons for her role in Zombie Killer?

Vivian finds an ally in the mysterious and charming Nick. He is everything Hollywood boys are not-genuine, kind, and determined to see Vivian for who she really is. But even he seems like he can't be trusted-what could he be hiding?

Beat up, hungry, and more confused than ever about who she's running from, Vivian is living in a real-life blockbuster horror flick. But there's no option to yell "cut" like there is on set....

Lauren Sabel's Vivian Divine Is Dead is a creepy, witty, fast-paced adventure about family, fame, and having the courage to save yourself.

My Thoughts:

An Open Letter To Vivian Divine is Dead,

Well, you were quite a romping adventure, weren't you. You were fast paced and fun and cheesy as all get out, but I liked you anyway. Your "twists" were silly and you didn't scare me one bit, but I still enjoyed you. You were kind of like a bad horror flick and I mean that in the best way possible. Totally predictable, full of convenient plot twists and maybe a genuine surprise thrown in every once in awhile. In the end you were wonderful and just what I was in the mood for, so thanks for that!

-The White Unicorn

This book is so fluffy that you just want to pet it. It's fast paced, funny, silly and even has some gory bits thrown in for good measure. I highly enjoyed the ride, even if it wasn't anything I haven't seen before. This book was kind of like a blood soaked, safety blanket, and I enjoyed that so much.

Sabel does a wonderful job on her settings, which gives the book an air of authenticity that really worked. She breaths life into Hollywood, giving us tricked out, star, trailers and backlot antics. Then she flips everything on it's head and gives us dusty, dirty, exciting, Mexico. As a person who has been to both places I can tell you that she's nails it. It made the book that much more exciting that it took place in both venues too. Seeing a starlet in her element the whole time would have been boring, but the Mexico parts become funny and terrifying all at once.

I liked Vivian and her evolution as a character a lot. She starts out as the rich kid who has it all. A great family, a hunky and famous boyfriend, the best best friend a girl could want and the best manager she could ask for. Of course she's spoiled and naive and sometimes you just want to drop her in the wilderness and she if she survives, but she's also likeable. Plus Sabel does drop her in the wilderness, so there's that. Everything gets taken away from her and she goes from the girl who would die in two seconds to the girl who kind of figures out how to take care of herself. People always seem to show up conveniently in her life to help her out though. It might have been nice to see her on her own more. Even though life got tough, it never really got that bad for her.

There was some insta-love going on, but in this case it really fit the flow of the story. I don't know if I bought Vivian and Nick's love story, but in the end it makes sense. Plus, Nick is the stuff that dreams are made of, so I was fine with getting to spend some time with him. 

This book is technically a murder mystery/run for your life story. That being said there are a lot of twists and turns happening. Some of them are pretty ridiculous and most of them are predictable, and yet Sabel still has a few surprises in store for her readers. I know a few things were a tad shocking to me. 

This is that book that you want to read when you're looking for something fun, quirky and oddly enough, not very cute. Yes, it had it's overly convenient issues, but it was also a good read. If you like bad horror films, this would totally work for you!

3 Unicorns = I liked it a lot, but it had it's issues!


Nicole said...

Hmmm I can't decide if I will like this one. Knowing it's a little cheesy and predictable makes me think I won't but it also sounds oddly enjoyable. You did a really good job of highlighting the positive. I'm going to keep this on my radar and maybe someday I'll be in the mood for just this.

Kirsty-Marie Jones said...

Thank God you found it cheesy! Haha, yeah, it seemed like a bad horror movie, but it was a fun one to read. Though, I didn't like it that much, I did finish it quick, and it's kind of a mindless read, so it was for a break. I found it predictable and a little out-there in places, and I didn't buy the romance either. I kind of hated it. :( You seemed to enjoy it a little more than me though, so yay! :)