Saturday 30 July 2011

Diary of a Mall Girl by Luisa Plaja

Published online in weekly installments by Fiction Express.

Normally I like to provide you with the opening paragraph from the book I am reading. However I found I couldn't copy and  paste it when I tried. Luckily Fiction Express allow you to read the first chapter for free, so if you would like to read it, please click here.

The mall is the heart of fifteen-year-old Molly’s suburban town. Most teens hang around with friends there, get their first job there, experience their first kiss there. And Molly? She actually lives there, in the complex’s residential wing. She has hundreds of the best shops and amenities right on her doorstep. But is living in a massive shopping centre as much fun as it sounds? Well, yes... and no. Find out the whole truth in Molly’s private diary..
Before reviewing this book, I must mention the unique format the book is available to be read in. The book is part of a selection provided by Fiction Express, which are written on a weekly basis by the authors. It is described as interactive e-fiction where you control the plot. Each week, you get to vote on how you would like the story to progress. For a writer, that must be a rather difficult task, as the author has to follow the decisions made by the readers. 
Luisa Plaja is a fabulous author. I recently read her book Split by a Kiss and absolutely loved it. She is humorous and sassy all in the same breath. So when I realised she would be writing a book where I would be able to vote on how the story turned out, I couldn't resist taking part and reading along with everyone else. 
The book is written in diary format and is aimed at the future Molly. She wants to keep it to look back on when she gets older. She is full of the teenage dreams of being famous, marrying a cute actor and living in and out of designer shops.  
Molly is a typical teenager and I loved her for that fact alone. She is completely wrapped up in the things that tend to be important to teenagers - boys, fashion and school. Her hormones are on overdrive as she tries to decide which boy she really likes the most. 
The story takes us through Molly's tumultuous love life as she sways between her feelings for Liam and Jasper. She has liked Liam forever, but Jasper has something about him, that Molly finds herself drawn to. Molly  listens to the advice of her friends, which doesn't always help her decisions. In the end, Molly listens to her own thoughts in order to make her final choice.
One of my favourite things about this book is that it was written in real time. It was such a good ploy by Luisa to include events that had happened in the news that week within the story. You will find references to the Royal Wedding,as well as Rapture that came and went in  a puff of exaggeration. This made the book feel very real, as though Molly was someone I actually knew who I could  have a chat about all these current events.

The book had some major gasping moments by the end when unknown events and situations became apparent, allowing the author to wrap up the story, tying all the loose ends.

I am really impressed by Luisa's first interactive ebook. I think she has coped remarkably well with the choices the voters have chosen and produced a warm, humorous book that will delight all her established fans as well as bringing in new ones who are discovering her distinct voice for the first time.


  1. What an interesting way to write a book. I love it. (It sorta reminds me of those choose-your-own-adventure books I read in the 80's, but meta!)

  2. A lovely review! I think Fiction express is a great idea.

  3. thank you for the awesome review! I was looking into buying the credits to read this one just the other day and I really cant wait to get it!

  4. An interactive ebook sounds like a fun idea!

  5. I really want to try to use Fiction Express in the library next year - such a fabulous idea.
    I am waiting for a printed copy of this story I cannot wait. Plus you have reminded me to go check out the 2nd chapter of Remy <3

  6. I love the idea of Fiction Express and I'll be certain to check this book out. Thanks for a fab review :D

  7. I just love the cover!!! That is how a YA book should look, yes I am that shallow

  8. Wow, what an interesting concept. And this is something I'd totally read even though it sounds like it's aimed more at YA. :D


Hiya, thanks for stopping by, it is always nice to hear what you have to say, so do leave a comment if you have time.