Title: The Secret Society of the Pink Crystal Ball
Author: Risa Green
Published: September 2010 by Sourcebooks Fire
My Rating: 4 stars
Tags: YA | Girls | Romance | Magic
Includes: Brief profanity, Sexuality
First Lines: I jump nearly a foot off of my bed, startled by a roar of thunder. Lindsay and Samantha, my two best friends, are lying on the floor, flipping through last week's issue of Teen People.
Erin Channing is tired of her boring life. She has the highest GPA in the tenth grade but besides that, she doesn't have any other interesting facts about herself to write an essay for her Art History class, to be picked for an Italy trip. Then one day, her Aunt Kiki (or Aunt Kooky) suddenly dies in a very odd way, and wants Erin to inherit her pink crystal ball with a set of coded directions attached. Erin's two best friends, Samantha and Lindsay, immediately know that the ball has magical powers, but logical Erin doesn't think so. However, once the questions she asks it begin coming true, she starts to rethink her situation after all.
This was a very cute, light, and romantic comedy read. I was hooked from the very first page with the author's sarcastic and funny tone. Erin was a very down-to-earth girl; I could definitely relate to her character well. She considers herself boring, dull, and plain especially compared to her two best friends. Samantha is the sexy one, who can make any guy's jaw drop when she walks by. Lindsay is the "Nicest Girl Ever", who has a computer geek stalker and an insecure bully who nicknamed her "Fart Girl". All three of the girls had their own personalities and identities, and it was interesting to watch how their characters mixed and mingled. They represented true friendship and were always there for each other.
This was a very creative and enjoyable novel with a fun plot. Since the girls are only in tenth grade and still haven't interpreted the rules written in riddles, they ask the pink crystal ball typical girl questions, involving their appearances and boys, without thinking about the consequences. I loved how their wishes would always be twisted around by the magic ball. But when things start coming true for Erin, and she rekindles the connection between her and Jesse Cooper, the first boy she kissed in eighth grade, she begins to believe in the magical ball's powers. Their friendship was fun to watch blossom into something more. Plus, Jesse was just a really sweet guy. Soon, Erin's life is anything but boring.
From page 144
He chuckles. "God, you must hate this project."
I look right into his blue eyes. "Not all of it," I say, except that I didn't mean to actually say that, I meant to just think it, and as I watch my comment register on his face, I can feel my own face heating up, and I know for sure that I am redder than a red velvet cupcake, and all I want to do is crawl under the table and die, right here in the snack shop.
The book is filled with humor, a tight friendship, and flirty romance. There weren't that many layers to the story, it was pretty straight-forward, but I still really enjoyed it. This is definitely a feel-good chick novel for teens looking for magic and love. I think that the book was set at just the right pace; it never slowed down and lost my attention. The ending felt a little forced and unbelievable but besides that, the rest of it was very realistic - minus the magic ball!
Cover Thoughts: I think this cover is really adorable and portrays the book well. It's girly, pink, and cute! (I don't really like how her hand is all blurred out though..)