I never went to prom and I never really wanted to either, despite the fact that I am a self proclaimed girly girl and have seen Pretty and Pink dozens of times before I graduated high school. I didn’t even go to law school prom this year. Yep, law school has a prom too. So, I guess you can’t get away from prom even after you escaped high school. Prom also seems to be a prominent feature in YAL books as well. And why not? Prom is supposed to be a time of passage and God knows formal wear always makes for a killer climax scene, as seen in Rosemary Clement-Moore’s book Prom Dates From Hell.
Summary: Maggie Quinn is a cynic and sort of psychic. She just wants to get through her few weeks of high school and get out of Dodge. Going to prom doesn’t even occur to her (smart girl). However, things aren’t that easy since someone has decided to curse Maggie’s peers and perhaps her too with an ancient demon.
Review: Love, love, love this book. I decided to pick it up a few weeks ago again and I was amazed again with how much I love the Maggie Quinn: Girl v. Evil series. Clement-Moore is a genius when it comes to characterization. Maggie and her friends come off as being very real despite all the wacky paranormal stuff that’s going on. And speaking of wacky paranormal stuff, Clement-Moore knows her stuff. The explanations seemed logical for all the weird stuff that was going on in Maggie’s world and I honestly think had Rosemary been screen writing that last Indiana Jones movie-you know, the one with the freaky crystal skulls- I would’ve been able to understand what was going on in that movie or at the very least had a few laughs. And okay, it helped that Justin the resident paranormal guru was a hot guy who was interested in Maggie and that the other resident paranormal guru, Maggie’s grandmother, made for some nice comic relief.
Best Feature: Perfect Balance between character and plot. You don’t see this often, but Prom Dates from Hell has that balance. While it’s a highly action paced novel filled with creepy paranormal things that go bump in the night, Rosemary also develops her characters in a fantastic way. For example, take D&D Lisa who appears to be just your average hell bent on world domination best friend but in actuality her character has much more depth to her.
Worst Feature: Open ending. Though this is a trilogy there were some characters whose story was never really fully closed like Stanley Dozer’s for instance and Brandon. Though we know what happened to them right after the prom, I was sort of interested in knowing what the lasting affects to their lives were.
Blockbuster Worthy: Oh yeah, this book reminded me of Buffy or Charmed. One of those good old late 1990’s early 2000 shows where the heroine kicks butt and has perfect hair (though Maggie would probably argue with me that her hair isn’t perfect, but whatevs). Here is my cast:
Maggie: Ellen Page, a.k.a. the go to girl on sarcastic teens. I could totally see her doing the role of Maggie.
D&D Lisa: Emma Stone. Remember how I said I really couldn’t see Emma playing Bliss Llewellyn from Blue Bloods because Bliss lacked spunk? Well, D&D Lisa has that spunk.
Justin: For some reason I see Tom Welling in the role though he is definitely no longer a teen. How long has Smallville been on exactly? Anyway, Justin’s a grad student so there might be a bit of leeway in age here. And Tom still looks pretty young.
Brian: Corey Montieth he does play a jock with a heart of gold.
Grannie Quinn: Why Debbie Reynolds of course. I have to say, I smiled when I read that comparison to her in the books because I love Debbie’s old movies like Singing in the Rain and The Unsinkable Molly Brown. But if Debbie wasn’t available then Shirley MacLaine she would have the new age grannie thing going down for sure.
Overall: Ten out of ten prom dresses