Thursday, 10 February 2011

Review: Diary of a Chav: The Ibiza Diaries - Grace Dent

Published: Hodder Children’s Books
Pages: 177 pages, paperback
Series?: Yes, this is book number four
Acquired: Purchased myself

Summary (from Goodreads): Shiraz Bailey Wood is back! Having just about recovered from her stint in London with Carrie Draper, Shiraz is prepared to overlook Carrie's totally out of order flaky behaviour because Carrie's just talked her dad into paying for two flights to Ibiza in the summer and no one needs a holiday more than Shiraz BW! Or so she thought...

Put it this way, the sleepy town of San Antonio, Ibiza ain't gonna know what's hit it once a few other randoms from Goodmayes have pitched up and caused havoc. Uma's in, hurrah! But then Wesley of all people decides to bring stupid Sooz away to top up her tan. Not to mention Mrs Diane Wood!

Still, Shiraz and Carrie are lovin' it, even if money is running out and the only jobs on offer seem to ben bog cleaning and bottle washing at the local bar ... Will, Uma, Carrie and our Shizza have the holiday of a lifetime? It's all in the diaries, bruv. Read on!

My review: I just love these books. They’re my (not so) guilty pleasure and I love each one more than the one before. They’re easy to read, hilariously funny and always make me well up, without fail. I adore each of the characters like they’re old friends and every time I sit down to a new Diary of a Chav book I know I’m in for a treat.

The Ibiza Diaries is no exception, as Shiraz, Carrie and the rest of the gang jet off to Ibiza for two weeks of clubbing, drinking and general debauchery. Shiraz is at her best, with memorable quotes on every page and more scandal than ever before. We learn a bit more about Kezia in this instalment, which I liked, as she always played more of a secondary role in the other books.

My only criticism is that we didn’t see much of Uma – though she was her usual brilliant self in the page time she did get. Always the voice of reason, it’s funny to look back and see how Uma was in the first Diary of a Chav book. I think she’s been on the biggest journey throughout the series and I couldn’t help but feel proud of her for turning her life around.

We see a bit more grit in The Ibiza Diaries as well, especially once Shiraz and Carrie start looking for jobs in Ibiza – the scene where they share a flat with the other club dancers has its laugh out loud funny moments but it’s also quite uncomfortable to read. I think it was really well done and Dent struck a perfect balance between the funny and harshly realistic elements of the book.

So, yes, I’m a huge Diary of a Chav fan, as you already know. My review of The Fame Diaries will be coming soon and after that it’s onto the last book *sob*.

First line: ‘Ten proper mintage things about Shizzlebizzle Wood flying off to Ibiza for her two week sunshine holiday!!!!!’

Plot: 4/5
Writing: 4/5
Characters: 4/5
Cover: 3/5
Total: 15/20 (B)

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