Boy Meets Girl

The Princess Diaries: Book One

The Boy Next Door

Every Boy's Got One

She Went All the Way

An Improper Proposal

Kiss the Bride

Lady of Skye

Portrait of My Heart

Where Roses Grow Wild

 
Queen of Babble Gets Hitched
by Meg Cabot
(Morrow, $22.95, PG) ISBN 978-0-06-085202-3
****
This fabulous third book (and presumably the conclusion) in the Queen of Babble series starts the reader off right where the last book ended – with Lizzie accepting Luke's proposal from the doorway, while his best friend Chaz is still – albeit fully dressed –sleeping off the night before in her bed.

Lizzie won't be dissuaded, however.  Throughout a majority of the book, she and Luke don't have much contact; she's suddenly the "it" girl in wedding dress design (even designing for a Paris Hilton-esque celebrity) and Luke is busy with school. This is just peachy with Lizzie, however; every time she thinks about their upcoming nuptials, she breaks out in hives. Then he takes off for the summer, and she calls for a much-needed "break" which she is certain will not lead to a break-up, though it does manage to alleviate some of her itching.

In the meanwhile, Lizzie goes through some personal crises involving not only Chaz but her slightly dysfunctional Midwestern family. When Chaz is the one to help her through everything, Lizzie finally realizes she's in love with him – but she refuses to break up with Luke because at least he's willing to marry her.

As usual, hilarity follows in Lizzie's wake. She has grown considerably from the first book, but it's refreshing to know that the inner Lizzie has remained the same. The characters around her are strong and totally amusing in their own rights. One even comes to appreciate Luke, despite his many foibles; although that could be because he is, after all, Chaz's best friend, and one wouldn't want to think poorly of Chaz. The character that shines the most, though, is Ava Geck, the pop culture princess whose wedding gown Lizzie is all but blackmailed to design, who starts out as a "skanky crack whore" and winds up all but settled and a very good friend to Lizzie.

There are concerns, when Lizzie and Chaz hook up not too far past the middle of the book, that the plot will wither and die. Not so; it just changes. The romance part of the suspense is over, but Lizzie's struggle with keeping the two men is just as much fun, especially considering Chaz's humorous outlook on the whole situation.

The initial Queen of Babble book was definitely worth five hearts. The only reason I do not give Queen of Babble Gets Hitched five is that it is so similar to the first and second books, and it just never gets terribly elaborate. At one point, you skip six months during Luke and Lizzie's engagement. I thought her problems with Luke could have been hashed out a little more as well, despite the fact that they were brought to light in Queen of Babble in the Big City. Actually, Lizzie herself could have been hashed out a little more. A current theme in chick lit, all that shows much of time in the main character is flakiness. Since Lizzie's turned into a fairly savvy businesswoman, I doubt she's that big of a ditz.

All in all, Queen of Babble Get Hitched is totally satisfying, frequently laugh-out-loud, and a great lighthearted read to get you into the swing of summer.

--Sarrah Knight


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