15 September 2009

Heaven Looks A Lot Like The Mall Book Review

Book: Heaven Looks A Lot Like The Mall
Authoress: Wendy Mass
Pages: 251
Genre: Young Adult Fiction

My condensed version:
After a freak accident in gym Tessa floats above her body to what she believes is heaven. But heaven looks a lot like the mall. Now she has been presented with a bag of items that represent different moments in her life and must relive and rehash moments she had thought were better left in the past.

Jacket speak:
"In the tradition of It's a Wonderful Life and A Christmas Carol, Tessa starts reliving her life up until that moment. She sees some things she'd rather forget, learns some things about herself she'd rather not know..."

My take: I wasn't sure I could handle reading an entire book in verse. But the this book charmed me from the first chapter. The writer captures the angst and anxiety of growing up. I winced along with Tessa as I watched her battle and endure her most embarrassing moments and in the end I cheered for her when she finally decides there might be a better way.

What I loved: Once Tessa is in reflection mode each chapter is named after a mall store. Very cute!

My rating: 4 stars; I really liked this short tale of reflection and redemption.

3 for 3:
Main character: Repressed spiteful suspicious
Plot: Unusual & thought provoking
Setting: Clever quirky smart

The Meter Readings:
Kiddie-o-meter: While this is a tale written for the young it is also a tale that addresses many of the challenging issues young people face. Such as (but not limited to) alcohol abuse, shop lifting, stealing, revenge, pranks, underage drinking, cheating on tests, dirty magazines, and jealousy.
Adult-o-meter: Best for only the young at heart or parents; parents should be able to gain some insight from this one.

Worth-a-read?: For sure. Check this one out from the library for a super quick light read. Reminder: It is written in verse. So it may not be for everyone.


"Hey, everything I learned about sex,
I learned from Spencer's."

"It's not my fault
there's nothing magical
about this fairy tale."

Cover love: Do you prefer the escalator up or the heavenly gum balls?

My final say: Wouldn't this make the cutest Hallmark movie? I adore Hallmark movies.


  1. Well, I know that I certainly wouldn't want to relive all my high school moments. Sure, some of them were fine, but I'd rather skip the embarrassing memories. Great review, and if I'm ever in the mood for a book in verse I'll try this one

  2. Great review, Juju! I like the stairs cover better. This one sounds a really quirky read. :)

  3. I guess the escalator cover makes more sense, but I have to admit, the gumball machine appeals to me.

    Great review!

  4. OR the perfect Hallmark TV series for young adults! This plot could certainly snag both teens AND adults alike! How fun!

  5. sounds like a good find

    I definitely like the escalator cover better

  6. Very interesting review! I have to say, I've never thought I could read an entire YA book in verse, but actually this sounds pretty good. I prefer the escalator cover, definitely.

  7. Sounds innovative but not sure this one is for me. I'll mention it to Alyssa. I have to go for the escalator cover. Seems more appropriate to the content.

  8. What a funny title -- I LOVES it, heheehe.

  9. I thought it was a Hallmark book or something. Isn't that font on the first cover the Hallmark font? The "H", anyway...

  10. I'm not sure about the whole "written in verse" thing, but you've piqued my interest so I might try the library.

    The escalator cover. :)
    Great review, by the way.

  11. This sounds like a fun read! The cover is even fun!
    As always, great review!

  12. I like both covers. I'll pick this up for a quick read. Sounds cute!

  13. Thanks for the great review! The escalator cover is cute and it sounds interesting, so maybe I'll check it out. The only thing I'm worried about is the verse, which I generally don't like, but who knows? :)

    And btw, tagged you here for an ABC meme: http://booksatmidnight.blogspot.com/2009/09/abc-meme.html. Hope you like it!

  14. Firstly I love the title. Second the cover...funny.

  15. I don't care much for books written in verse either, but this really does look like a good one..hmm I think I'll add it to my TBR ;]

    Thanks for the review!

  16. I may have to put this back on my list. I took it off when I learned it was written in verse. I just didn't know if I could do it. After you're review I'm willing to think about it again :)

  17. Nice review. This isn't my usual kind of book to read though. I like the cover with the escalator better. I haven't read the book, but perhaps it's more symbolic? suitable? It's a stairway to heaven, I mean... escalator... =)

  18. A whole book set in verse? I don't know if I could handle that, either! Still, it sounds interesting... time travel-ish stories are fun! :)

  19. Great review, Juju! (as always)
    I haven't read much YA recently (other than the Twilight saga) but this looks pretty interesting!

  20. I didn't know this one was done in verse. I've always had a hard time getting into them, but maybe I'll give this a shot sometime. I do like the escalator cover better than the gumball.


  21. I am so reading this book! I seriously just put a hold on it at the library. Thanks for the recommendation, Juju :)

    1. Yay! I'm SO glad! I can't wait to hear what you think.