Monday, October 17, 2016

Wax by Gina Damico

Summary from Goodreads:
Paraffin, Vermont, is known the world over as home to the Grosholtz Candle Factory. But behind the sunny retail space bursting with overwhelming scents and homemade fudge, seventeen-year-old Poppy Palladino discovers something dark and unsettling: a back room filled with dozens of startlingly life-like wax sculptures, crafted by one very strange old lady. Poppy hightails it home, only to be shocked when one of the figures—a teenage boy who doesn’t seem to know what he is—jumps naked and screaming out of the trunk of her car. She tries to return him to the candle factory, but before she can, a fire destroys the mysterious workshop—and the old woman is nowhere to be seen.

With the help of the wax boy, who answers to the name Dud, Poppy resolves to find out who was behind the fire. But in the course of her investigation, she discovers that things in Paraffin aren’t always as they seem, that the Grosholtz Candle Factory isn’t as pure as its reputation—and that some of the townspeople she’s known her entire life may not be as human as they once were. In fact, they’re starting to look a little . . . waxy. Can Poppy and Dud extinguish the evil that's taking hold of their town before it’s too late?
I forgot how much I love this author. I kept delaying my reading of Wax. I’ve had an ARC of it all year (pretty much). First, I wanted to read it closer to its pub date. Then that passed, and I wanted to wait till closer to Halloween, thinking it was more of a horror type story. While, there are definitely horror type elements at play here, this was so much more of a fluffy comedy than anything else.
I loved this. I kept laughing out loud while reading it. The characters were wonderful and flawed in ways that were so believable. Poor Poppy had gone through so much extreme embarrassment that I couldn’t help but feel total and complete empathy for her. Throw in some crazy sarcasm, an obsession with musical theater, and a near constant witty banter with a best friend character, and well, this book was just what I needed.
Poppy’s family was pretty great too. I loved that her parents were both yoga instructors obsessed with eating healthy and watching this eating healthy reality tv show. I loved them and their flaws. Like, they were totally accepting of Poppy bringing home a live wax dummy/ “foreign exchange student” when she lied and he said he was from an island off of Africa.
Nothing ever got really scary for me. I guess all the stuff with the immortals, the Madame Tussauds connection, and the wax just felt so far-stretched to me, that it always came off as more funny than scary. And in this case, funny worked. I had so much fun reading about Poppy and her theater crew saving the town from evil. What a crazy, fun, hilarious concept.
And while I’m normally a big fan of romance, it was kind of nice to have a supernatural type YA story that didn’t have any of it. I kept waiting for a certain couple to actually become a couple, and it didn’t really happen. And I’m kind of glad for the higher emphasis on friendship.
The one thing I could have lived without is the epilogue.  The epilogue was too much. Also, I hated the final ending for Poppy. Maybe the final copy of the book doesn’t have it?
All in all, I loved this. The characters were amazing. The banter was spot-on. I loved the humor and the sarcasm. The setting was both believable and over-the-top in a good way. The emphasis on family and friendship was great too. I give this a 9/10.

1 comment:

  1. I thought this was more horror too but YAY for fluffy comedies (coming from a scaredy cat LOL) I'm intrigued by the premise too so I definitely want to read this now. Great review my friend, happy you loved this so much :)