It turns out that I had A LOT of "Books in Stuff" waiting to be reviewed, so we're doing another week!
Cathy's Book: If Found Call 650-266-8233 Sean Stewart and Jordan Weisman
Cathy's not having a great time lately. Her boyfriend suddenly dumped her, she has a weird mark on her hand, and her dad's dead. Add in best friend drama and bad grades, and well...
But things take a decided turn for the bizarre when Cathy starts looking into WHY Victor dumped her. He's either a murderer, messed up with the Chinese mob, or a vampire. Or all of the above. Soon Cathy is in way over her head as she tries to save Victor, and, more importantly, herself.
Format-wise, the book is Cathy's journal, complete with doodles and comments and notes in the margins. Extra evidence is included in a package in the back--pictures, newspaper articles, Cathy's full-color drawings of characters, lipstick shade tests [there's a CoverGirl tie-in/marketing component], old letters, birth certificates, a marriage licensee... I liked the touch that a photograph of Victor with a phone number on it is torn into 4 pieces that the reader can put back together. This is fun, but not strictly necessary. It's all discussed in the text, but the addition of it is pretty cool, especially as some of it's ripped up. (The paperback includes photo-pages of the evidence instead of the actual ephemera, which isn't as fun, but much more practical for libraries!!!)
In addition to the book, there are websites and phone numbers to call, voice mail boxes to hack into and a huge online component. This provides additional information, but nothing terribly vital (so, it's fun for fans, but you can enjoy the book without it.) You can also do what I did and google around to find some sites that have done all the hard work for you (what can I say, I'm LAZY.)*
As far as the actual story, it was pretty fun. I liked the story and the format. I liked that all the extra stuff was there, but ultimately wasn't required--it adds to the story for those who want to go the extra mile, but people who don't or can't go those extra steps can still enjoy the book.
Bonus points for having a large Chinese-American cast.
This is pretty telling about my ultimate feelings on the book-- when I finished it, I liked it enough to buy the sequel, but couldn't read it right away because of school. It's been 4 years, and I haven't read it yet, but I still have it, because I still *want* to read it. Just not enough to bump it up the stack. Does that makes sense?
*This is also my complaint with Pottermore. I want the extra info about the book and characters, but I don't want to go around collection random trinkets and all that other stuff to get to it. Annoying.
Book Provided by... my wallet
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