In Diva, the companion to Alex Flinn's YA novel Breathing Under Water, Caitlin is dealing with a lot. She's living through the aftermath of an abusive relationship, she has a youth-obsessed mother who just doesn't understand her, and she's on a constant yo-yo diet to live up the standards of her nitpicking friends. All Caitlin wants is to escape her not-so-glamorous life and pursue her dream of becoming a singer, but when she's accepted into the Miami High School of the Arts, her life doesn't magically become perfect. Yet despite some struggles to keep up with her competitive classmates and the distraction of cute new crush, Caitlin never loses her sense of humor and eventually gains the confidence to achieve her goals. Perfect for fans of such books as Carolyn Mackler's The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big Round Things.
- Paperback | 304 pages
- 132.08 x 198.12 x 22.86mm | 272.15g
- 18 Oct 2007
- HarperCollins Publishers Inc
- New York, United States
- black & white illustrations
Back cover copy
For most people, the word "diva" means brilliant, talented, over-the-top, and glamorous. I, however, seemed to be trapped in the not-very-glamorous life of a cheerleader wannabe with serious ex-boyfriend issues and a permanent yo-yo diet. At least until the day I auditioned for Miami High School of the Arts--and got in! All I had to do was convince my mother, the cosmetics salesperson with epically bad taste in clothes and men, that going downtown to hang with the music geeks was a good idea. I had to blackmail her to be able to do it, but I'm here--a diva-in-training--and I'm not so sure I can cut it. Now what?
"[Caitlin] sets an excellent example as someone who follows her dreams, despite other people's opinions." -- KLIATT "Realistic and thoughtful." -- Kirkus Reviews "Flinn turns a fine eye on the seemingly never-ending mother-daughter dance, in which someone is always out of step. A fast read, but there's meat here, too." -- Booklist
About Alex Flinn
Alex Flinn loves fairy tales and is the author of the #1 New York Times bestselling Beastly, a spin on Beauty and the Beast that was named a VOYA Editor's Choice and an ALA Quick Pick for Reluctant Readers. Beastly is also a major motion picture starring Vanessa Hudgens. Alex also wrote A Kiss in Time, a modern retelling of Sleeping Beauty; Cloaked, a humorous fairy tale mash-up; and Bewitching, a reimagining of fairy tale favorites, including Hansel and Gretel, Cinderella, The Princess and the Pea, and The Little Mermaid, all told by Kendra-the witch from Beastly. Her other books for teens include Breathing Underwater, Breaking Point, Nothing to Lose, Fade to Black, and Diva. She lives in Miami with her family.
Our customer reviews
DIVA tells the story of Caitlin McCourt, a sixteen-year-old opera fan and singer, as she attempts to break out of her old life by transferring to a performing arts school. Among the things Caitlin is escaping are an abusive ex-boyfriend, vacuous "friends" who don't understand her interests, and the advice of her overbearing and superficial mother. However, her new school comes with its own share of difficulties. She has to learn to dance and act as well as sing, and she's afraid she's too "normal" to fit in with the artsy students. Caitlin is an incredibly sympathetic character. Despite being burdened with a mother who's more interested in flirting with Caitlin's guy friends than supporting her daughter, and a father who has started a new family that rarely includes her, she manages to believe in and look after herself. Her voice is realistic and open, letting the readers in on all of her insecurities (which many teens will share). Her decisions make sense for her, even if readers don't always agree with them, and throughout the story she comes more and more into her own. Perhaps the most interesting aspect of Caitlin's story is how her relationship with her mother evolves. Much of Caitlin's personality appears to be a product of her mother's hot-and-cold attitude toward her daughter. As Caitlin steps out from her mother's shadow, she sees not only her own needs and desires more clearly, but also her mother's. Caitlin's discovery that there's more to her mother than she realized is poignant and believable. DIVA will be enjoyed by any teen, especially girls, struggling with the pressures of friends and family. With its colorful and well-developed characters, it's an easy story to get drawn into. The only criticism I could make is that the novel doesn't offer a great deal more than other good titles with similar subject matter, but what it does offer is so involving that it's hard to complain.show moreby TeensReadToo