Written by: Kimberly Francisco on November 23, Its plot seemed very similar in tone to Impossible and I worried that I would encounter the same contrived characters and unrealistic dialogue. I expected to pick up the book, read a couple of chapters, and give up on it immediately. Phoebe Rothschild is the daughter of a very rich and successful woman.
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When Mallory leaves the world of faeries to befriend a human named Phoebe Rothschild, her only thought is securing the future of her people. But as she gets to know Phoebe she wavers in her purpose, so her brother Ryland is sent in to do what Mallory cannot.
With the future of the faerie kingdom at stake, he knows he must not fail, even if it means manipulating Phoebe and isolating her from her family and her beliefs about herself. Extraordinary by Nancy Werlin straddles the world of fantasy and reality with a look at how vulnerable teen girls can be to undue influence from friends and boyfriends.
All Phoebe knows is that Mallory is her friend, the sister she never had. They do everything together, and because Phoebe lacks self-confidence, she often goes along with anything Mallory suggests.
Then everything changes when Ryland comes into the picture. Ryland is manipulative and abusive, yet Phoebe is fascinated by him and wants to please him. He isolates Phoebe from her family and turns her against Mallory. Ryland has a magical advantage in turning Phoebe to his will; even so, this should be a great issue to discuss in a mother-daughter book club with girls who are 14 and older and may be starting to date.
What made Phoebe so vulnerable to control? What could she have done differently? These are major issues for teens, who may be venturing into new relationships without parental oversight for the first time ever. Her mother is a strong role model for her, yet Phoebe must also realize that she needs strength of character and belief in her own abilities to succeed as she grows.
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Book Review: Extraordinary by Nancy Werlin
Phoebe Rothschild—yes, of those Rothschilds—dumps her toxic friends for new girl Mallory in seventh grade. After four years of best friendship, Mallory is gorgeous and stylish—and, unbeknownst to Phoebe, she's also not human. In brief snippets between chapters, readers learn that Mallory has been sent by the faerie queene to manipulate Phoebe for some dark purpose. When Mallory fails or refuses to bring Phoebe into line, the faeries send Mallory's brother Ryland, who glamours Phoebe into dazed, romantic compliance.
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Title: Extraordinary. Phoebe finds herself drawn to Mallory, the strange and secretive new kid in school, and the two girls become as close as sisters. Ryland has an immediate, exciting hold on Phoebe — but a dangerous hold, for she begins to question her feelings about her best friend and, worse, about herself. Phoebe is a single child, a sweet and genuinely kind girl, and a beloved daughter to her powerful mother and gentle father.
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