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Monday, 24 January 2011

MG Monday: Review: Avalon High by Meg Cabot

Title: Avalon High
Author: Meg Cabot
Publisher: Macmillan Children's Books
Publication Date: 5 Jan 2007

Source: Own

Synopsis: From Amazon
Avalon High, Ellie's new school, is pretty much what she'd expected. There's Lance, the hunky footballer. Jennifer, the cute cheerleader. Marco, the troublemaker. And then there's Will - the most gorgeous guy Ellie's ever met. She can hardly believe he likes HER.

When Will says he thinks he's met Ellie before, things start getting a little weird. A feeling that grows as Ellie discovers the strange bonds that entwine Will, Lance, Jen, Marco - and herself.
As darkness turns to danger, can Ellie stop the horrific chain of events that is about to engulf them all . . .

OK I raise my hand this is the first Meg Cabot book I have read. I can hear you gasping.... I know, I know ....I don't know how I have lived this long without reading Meg Cabot either. I pushed  this one up my TBR pile because there is a Disney movie being aired on the Disney channel later this month. When I saw the trailer I knew I had to read the book before I saw the movie. Remember I have 3 young girls so that is my *cough* excuse for watching the Disney channel. Plus #1 my oldest daughter has read the Mange version and loves it. Plus #2 it is about King Arthur - I adore stuff about King Arthur/Merlin/The Knights of the Round Table - so how could I not read it.

Written in first person narrative from Ellie's perspective. Wow, did she have such a quirky, fun character. Her parents are both professors of, guess what, medieval studies specialising in the Arthurian legend (especially her mother). Allowing in depth revelations concerning the Arthurian legend intertwined with the plot making it almost three dimensional.

From the very start of the book little plot hints and subtle references to the intricacies of the Arthurian legend are placed throughout the narrative. The writing style is so relatable I felt as if Meg Cabot had tapped into my head to see how I thought. It was wonderfully light yet superbly descriptive, (I am struggling to express myself on this one).

The way in which the Arthurian mythology was woven into the narrative was ingenious, not only was it relatable it was completely believable. The use of the names not only of the characters but of peripheral aspects such as the dog was a mastermind stroke.

All the characters were well developed, had individual character to complement the story and provide realism to the plot and believable interactions. They weren't perfect but even their character flaws gave them a sense of roundness in personality and imagination.

The use of Lord Tennyson's ballad 'The Lady of Shalott' at the start of each chapter which then corresponded with the action in the plot, giving it multiple layers, was inspired and brilliant. I don't know how Meg Cabot managed to do it but it worked fantastically well.

The main theme I found for me within this book was that although we may all have a destiny to fulfill its outcome doesn't have to be dictated to us, in the end it is each individual that is in control of their own destiny and therefore its outcome. You shouldn't conform to anyone's expectations of you but be true to yourself.

Quirky/witty/fun/entertaining. A stroke of pure genius. I heart Meg Cabot. That is all [ : D ]


  1. I love, love, love Meg Cabot!!

    I recommend you get your hands on everything else she's written right now. Her books are fantastic!

  2. Now you know how much I want to read this. LOL!

  3. Do you know, I've never read anything by Meg Cabot... It's my secret shame. I really must get round to it.

  4. This sounds super cute. I've nearly bought it a couple of times, mostly because it looks like such a fun read. Having read your review I love the idea of the Arthurian mythology and the message.

    I've actually only read one Meg Cabot book - Airhead. I *loved* it. Read that one too!

  5. I really hope that you are now a Meg Cabot convert. She's amazing. So much fun and quirky (Meg Cabot herself is obviously barking mad, in the best possible way) and I love how you get what her message is, but you're not bashed over the head with it. I absolutely LOVED this one. Just all of her books. Genius.

  6. Avalon High is my favourite Meg Cabot, closely followed by the Mediator series. The movie...well, it wasn't completely terrible, but it did kind of rip the plot to shreds and stitch it back together upside down and inside out. :D

    Macmillan Publishers UK have just reprinted the Mediator series in very lick black covers, two books a volume. I'd definately recommend you try them, if you liked AH.

    Happy blog birthday! I'm late, I know, but I only found your blog during the week.


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