Monday, April 15, 2013

Review: How Zoe Made Her Dreams (Mostly) Come True by Sarah Strohmeyer

How Zoe Made Her Dreams (Mostly) Come True by Sarah Strohmeyer
Series: Standalone
Published: April 23rd, 2013
Publisher: Balzer & Bray
320 pages (e-ARC)
Genre: Contemporary young adult
Acquired this book: From the publisher via Edelweiss
Warning: May contain spoilers
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From Sarah Strohmeyer, author of Smart Girls Get What They Want, comes this romantic comedy about one girl's summer job from hell. Think The Devil Wears Prada set in Disney World.
When cousins Zoe and Jess land summer internships at the Fairyland Kingdom theme park, they are sure they've hit the jackpot. With perks like hot Abercrombie-like Prince Charmings and a chance to win the coveted $25,000 Dream & Do grant, what more could a girl want?

Once Zoe arrives, however, she's assigned to serve "The Queen"-Fairyland's boss from hell. From spoon-feeding her evil lapdog caviar, to fetching midnight sleeping tonics, Zoe fears she might not have what it takes to survive the summer, much less win the money.

Soon backstabbing interns, a runaway Cinderella, and cutthroat competition make Zoe's job more like a nightmare than a fairy tale. What will happen when Zoe is forced to choose between serving The Queen and saving the prince of her dreams?

I read several of Sarah Strohmeyer’s books before I became a book blogger. While I haven’t yet read her YA debut, Smart Girls Get What They Want, I jumped at the chance to read How Zoe Made Her Dreams (Mostly) Come True when it became available on Edelweiss. There are some authors who shouldn’t make the jump from adult to YA, but let me tell you: Ms Strohmeyer is not one of them. How Zoe Made her Dreams (Mostly) Come True was a funny, engaging story with a unique concept, great characters, and a positive message.

Zoe was the kind of girl you’d want as your friend - loyal, selfless, and she’d stick up for you no matter what. Her cousin Jess was a great secondary character. Unlike a lot of YA where the best friends end up betraying each other in some way or not standing up for each other, Jess had Zoe’s back, and that was really nice to see.

The setting of this book was part of what made it so unique. Zoe and Jess spend the summer at Fairyland Kingdom, giving the reader a chance to see the inside workings of a theme park, from the people who clearly take their jobs too seriously to the ones who are just getting through the day. Zoe had to face a lot of challenges, and I liked that even in a setting that most people wouldn’t relate to, Zoe remains relatable and her reactions and strength make her a character you can’t help but like.

Zoe and Jess weren’t the only great characters. There were a ton of secondary characters who were really well fleshed out, from the ones who made you angry to the ones you couldn’t help but fall for to the ones who provided comedic relief. A favourite of mine was definitely the Queen - she was so ridiculous and her requests were so nonsensical, I found myself laughing out loud at a lot of the things she said and did.

How Zoe Made Her Dreams (Mostly) Come True was more than just a light, funny read. It was surprising, refreshing, full of unexpected twists, and even a mystery that added just the right amount of tension to the plot. It’s sure to please fans of contemporary young adult, especially those who enjoy modern day Cinderella stories. 

I received this book from the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. No money or compensation of any sort exchanged hands.

Have you read How Zoe Made Her Dreams (Mostly) Come True? What did you think? Have you read any of Sarah's other books?


  1. I still need to read SMART GIRLS. I have it on my Nook. *Bad Molli* I am hoping to have time to download and read this one from Edelweiss before it expires, but we'll see how I do with my other (mountain) of review books. Ugh.

    I'm really glad you liked this one, too. I didn't realize the author wrote adult books! I'm happy to see that the characters were well-developed, even the minor characters, and that there are some good messages in this one. :)

  2. Oh, I'm so happy to see a great review for this! I have this in my queue to read soon and I can't wait. It sounds super sweet! :)


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