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BOOK REVIEW: The Implausible Story of Olive Far Far Away by Tony Alexandra

| 18 October 2018 | Reply

BOOK REVIEW: The Implausible Story of Olive Far Far Away by Tony Alexandra

Harlequin Young Adult
March 2018
Paperback, $19.99
Reviewed by Steph O’Connell

Young Adult

7/10

 

‘Forget gypsy curses and invisibility. Forget stupid boys who are supposed to be my true love and then dump me. I’ve got one mission now – fun.’

Olive has been dumped by Tom, the one person who could see her. But she’s determined to have fun regardless of the gypsy curse rendering her invisible to all but her true love. After six months of hijinks on the road with her childhood friend Jordan travelling through Africa and Asia, Olive makes the startling discovery that another boy can see her. Dillon is dark Irish trouble and irritatingly inclined to disappear on (possibly shady) adventures of his own. 

Resolved to discover how Dillon can see her, Olive’s mission is thwarted when Jordan meets a boy with over-sized kneecaps and her best friend Felix falls for a girl who is inexcusably English. Olive must juggle her friends and untangle her feelings for Dillon and Tom, while her hunt for the truth lures her from the peaks of the Himalayas to the purr of New York City, climaxing on the stark Irish shore, where Olive, implausibly, intends to break the curse for once and for all.

 

In the book that started this journey, The Impossible Story of Olive in Love, readers were introduced to Olive, a girl with a hand-me-down curse of invisibility inherited from her mother which is supposed to stop all but her true love from being able to see her. She can’t even see herself!

Olive was a little unlikable at times – stubborn, selfish, self-pitying – but when you really get to the heart of it and put yourself in the invisible shoes of this cursed girl, you can understand where she’s coming from. And, abrasive main character or not, Tonya Alexandra’s skill is evident, as her writing pulls you in and refuses to let you go.

In this second offering, Olive has decided not to sit around and mope, and is on a tour of the world, in hopes of finding a way to break the curse, but also in an effort to really start to live her own life. And readers really have to admire the guts that takes, as well as laugh along with some of the hijinks that happen along the way.

At times, this second instalment does read a little like “The Bachelorette: Invisible Girl Edition”, but you know what? I loved every minute of it, and I’m not even sorry.

This was a great conclusion to this duology, with messages about fate and destiny, as well as plenty of coming of age goodness, with characters who might stumble every so often as they try to find their feet… just as we in the non-fictional world often do.

All in all I was incredibly happy to get a hold of this book and came away with a deeply satisfied feeling. It was a great offering from Alexandra, and I can’t wait to see what she serves up next!

 

Stephanie O’Connell

Category: Book Reviews

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