Oh My Goth

Oh My Goth

A note from Jade Leighton's journal Years ago, a tragic accident robbed me of my mother and emotions. Because I find beauty in darkness and thrive outside social norms, I've been labeled a "freak" at school. I know my continued apathy hurts my loved ones, but I'm not about to change. Nothing will ever hurt me again.Then I wake up in an alternate reality...and everything e...

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Title:Oh My Goth
Author:Gena Showalter
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Oh My Goth Reviews

  • Jennifer Wardrip

    Reviewed by Taylor Rector for TeensReadToo.com

    Jade is a Goth-girl who is a total nonconformist and is a "freak" at her school.

    Mercedes is a "Barbie" -- blonde, super-popular, and a total conformist, who is also Jade's mortal enemy.

    Clarik is a new mysterious boy that has come to their high school, who Jade quickly realizes she has a crush on.

    The girls' principal is sick of these two girls causing problems so she decides to teach them a lesson they will never forget.

    After getting the parents'

    Reviewed by Taylor Rector for TeensReadToo.com

    Jade is a Goth-girl who is a total nonconformist and is a "freak" at her school.

    Mercedes is a "Barbie" -- blonde, super-popular, and a total conformist, who is also Jade's mortal enemy.

    Clarik is a new mysterious boy that has come to their high school, who Jade quickly realizes she has a crush on.

    The girls' principal is sick of these two girls causing problems so she decides to teach them a lesson they will never forget.

    After getting the parents' consent, the girls are taken to an old rundown building, strapped down, and sedated. Mercedes and Jade have no idea what is going on, until they wake up at home. They go to school only to realize that everyone has turned Goth and the "Barbies" are the "freaks" now.

    The girls don't like their new environment at all and are determined to find out how to get back to reality. Clarik is in the game with them and he and Jade become very close. Can he help get them back? Will they ever get back to the reality they knew? When they get home, will things be the same way they were before, or will the girls have to change?

    This is a super-fun, fast-paced novel that even someone who would be called a "Barbie" can like! The characters are all lovable, and I really enjoyed this book!

  • Madison Warner Fairbanks

    Oh My Goth by Gena Showalter

    First published 2006.

    Young adult twist on Its a Wonderful Life or Freaky Friday.

    The first half of the book sets up the lives of Jade, Mercedes and new school classmate Clarik. There is tragedy, friendships and deliberate cruelty. And then reality is twisted and they must learn and understand their new world to survive.

    As is typical with this type of renewal and awakening story, I cried through the last 50 pages. It wasn’t really a mystery what was going on, but the r

    Oh My Goth by Gena Showalter

    First published 2006.

    Young adult twist on Its a Wonderful Life or Freaky Friday.

    The first half of the book sets up the lives of Jade, Mercedes and new school classmate Clarik. There is tragedy, friendships and deliberate cruelty. And then reality is twisted and they must learn and understand their new world to survive.

    As is typical with this type of renewal and awakening story, I cried through the last 50 pages. It wasn’t really a mystery what was going on, but the results were sweet and satisfying.

    The message: live life and be kind.

    I received a copy of this updated book at ALA.

  • Miranda Reads

    Much like Kanye West and Taylor Swift, or like Anthony Bourdain and Paula Deen, Jade (a Goth) and Mercedes (a "Barbie") are

    .

    Mercedes commands

    who delight in kicking Jade when she's down.

    It feels like no matter what she does, Jade always gets the short end of the stick. Even her teachers parti

    Much like Kanye West and Taylor Swift, or like Anthony Bourdain and Paula Deen, Jade (a Goth) and Mercedes (a "Barbie") are

    .

    Mercedes commands

    who delight in kicking Jade when she's down.

    It feels like no matter what she does, Jade always gets the short end of the stick. Even her teachers participate in the

    And when Jade fights back, her principal sentences Jade and Mercedes to

    - resulting in a

    of social status.

    Goths are totally "in", anything remotely preppy is totally out and

    But even with that power, she soon realizes that not everything is perfect.

    Despite becoming the new "it" girl, all Jade wants to do is go home - but as the stakes get higher,

    Overall,

    (and I was expecting a real doozy).

    To put this into perspective, I've read Gena's other series (Firstlife) and wow. Those were bad - each book worse than the last.

    So, when I heard that Gena was re-writing her Oh My Goth standalone

    I just had to check out the original (and the "revamped" version).

    And the verdict?

    I honestly

    This was easily 10x better than the Firstlife series (and Oh My Goth was published ~10 yrs before Firstlife) - which really makes me wonder -

    Anyway, there were a few areas of the book that were a bit...too much. In particular, there's

    The principal makes Jade's and Mercedes's parents sign a permission slip to allow a weird doctor (operating out of the woods) to inject the girls with

    and computer simulations...all to bring a bit of peace to the school.

    Maybe it's just me...but it

    The sheer amount of

    spent on developing such a realistic virtual reality game...I just had to wonder why it was being used on

    opposed to interrogating terrorists or toppling governments.

    I really think Gena should've gone with magic for the explanation - coming up with this pseudo-real situation just brings up so many plot holes.

    Now, I've only read the Firstlife series by Gena but wow. If you are looking for a

    main character - that is a go-to book.

    And while

    , it is clear that Gena's signature

    factor is still under development.

    For example, Jade interrogates and berates her teacher (who admittingly serves it right back to her) and then

    when she's thrown out of class.

    Oh, and did I mention she

    Cause that always works real well in high school...

    .

    This wasn't all terrible - there were a few moments where Jade's snarky-ness was

    Especially when she and Mercedes realized that they swapped social standings.

    But (unfortunately) there were just as many moments that did bring out the

    in me. In particular, was the way the author informed audience about

    now that the Goths are in charge.

    It just felt

    every time Jade didn't know something she was supposed to know.

    Plus, Coffin Club? Really? Realistically, how many meetings could it possibly take to plan out one funeral?

    Ohhhh wow. Would you look at that,

    (TM) who's actually super kind and sensitive once the main character looks past his bloody past.

    Nothing like pinning all your self-esteem on a boy... Good thing she's Goth and she's beyond such teenage tropes...oh wait...

    Honestly, this one wasn't that bad. I had to suspend my belief for a moment or two...but it was an entertaining and quick read.

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  • Steph (Reviewer X)

    I'm so surprised that I'm writing a negative review of this book. When I first got Oh My Goth, I thought it'd be one of those books that I'd recommend to all my friends. The premise was great! I mean--here's to showing everyone is human on the inside and labels/appearances should not be the defining factor of a person or their worth.

    And then...

    Well, first off, we get this huge contradiction right at the opening. Each chapter is prefaced with a blurb from Jade's private journal--here's the firs

    I'm so surprised that I'm writing a negative review of this book. When I first got Oh My Goth, I thought it'd be one of those books that I'd recommend to all my friends. The premise was great! I mean--here's to showing everyone is human on the inside and labels/appearances should not be the defining factor of a person or their worth.

    And then...

    Well, first off, we get this huge contradiction right at the opening. Each chapter is prefaced with a blurb from Jade's private journal--here's the first one:

    "When people look at me, they automatically assume I'm dark and weird. Why can't they see the truth? I'm just a girl, trying to find my place in the world."

    I thought, Okay, we're off to a great start. This character has strong likeable potential. But then the narrative began. Three paragraphs down the first page and we've got:

    "Honestly, I'd rather be anywhere else. Even home, where my dad begins almost every conversation with, "You should lose the black clothes and wear something with color." Puh-lease. Like I want to look like every Barbie clone in Hell High, a.k.a. Oklahoma's insignificant Haloway High School. Ironically, Dad doesn't appreciate the bright blue streaks in my originally blond/now-dyed-black hair. Go figure. That's color, right?"

    So, Jade complains about being judged based on her appearance, but here she is doing the exact same thing. Is it any wonder people think that about her?

    The book went on. Some passages were funny in a teen-angsty way. Others were bland. But mostly, my thoughts went elsewhere while I was reading. By the last page, I didn't care what Jade did, what the book's message was, or even how it ended. I won't say I was happy that it ended. I wasn't. I wanted to like this book. But I didn't and here's why:

    Jade was impenetrable. I couldn't figure her out or relate to her at all. In fact, I thought she was highly superficial, which is not something I want from any character, especially one I'm reading about in a first-person narrative. I'll even go so far as to say this book was superficial. It meandered along the surface, never really digging deep enough for me to get any substance. Some passages were unbelievably contrived, like the ones describing all the types of goths there are and how they dress, like it's one big institution. Is this what this girl considers being a noncomformist? Comforming to the "norms" or noncomformity???

    Which brings me to my next point. Jade "expresses her individuality" because her mother, at the exact moment before crashing with another car and dying from the collision, told her to always be herself, no matter what. And now Jade thinks she has to be unlike everyone else to be herself. Someone please tell this girl that dressing differently doesn't make you original.

    Overall, didn't like the main character; thought the book's message was botched; didn't care much about about anything that happened. I had hoped this book would've gone to say something about how a person's essence is more important than their outer shell. It didn't. It focused exactly on the opposite, which makes it pointless.

    Rating: 3/10

  • Yan

    Oh My Goth was oh my god bad. I slammed the book—twice—on the countertop while reading. I ranted to my brother how much I disliked the book. I fumed for a good 10 minutes afterwards. My ‘dogma’ of how MTV books could never go wrong has proven to be blasphemous with this book.

    When reading the summary I thought ‘hey this sounds pretty good’. When I finished I nearly—gagged—myself.

    Jade needed a new sense of what it means to be an individual. She needs to understand that wearing clothes that a major

    Oh My Goth was oh my god bad. I slammed the book—twice—on the countertop while reading. I ranted to my brother how much I disliked the book. I fumed for a good 10 minutes afterwards. My ‘dogma’ of how MTV books could never go wrong has proven to be blasphemous with this book.

    When reading the summary I thought ‘hey this sounds pretty good’. When I finished I nearly—gagged—myself.

    Jade needed a new sense of what it means to be an individual. She needs to understand that wearing clothes that a majority of her peers do not wear and moaning and groaning about how they all suck does not mean to be an individual. She needs to know when to stick up for yourself instead of running over people like a fortified tank half of the time and being trampled like a calf the other half. She condemns people because they all dress alike yet she and friends seem to dress very similar. Jade needs to let go of her past and stop living her life by a code—a sentence—her mother had spoken before her death. A powerful message it was, but the way Jade acts because of it makes her a mindless zombie.

    This whole book could have acted as a strong message to teens but the delivery made it nothing short aside from being a kindle to a fire.

  • Ginger

    If you couldn't tell that it was going to be bad by the title or the sh*tty tagline ("Kiss my hall pass"), don't worry. It's bad from the very first word written.

    Jade is a self-proclaimed "nonconformist" goth girl who is picked on by everyone else (except for the three only other goth kids in the school - yeah right) because she's different. Mercedes is the most popular girl at school who's main goal is to make every loser's life a living hell. One day, both girls are "taken to a remote location

    If you couldn't tell that it was going to be bad by the title or the sh*tty tagline ("Kiss my hall pass"), don't worry. It's bad from the very first word written.

    Jade is a self-proclaimed "nonconformist" goth girl who is picked on by everyone else (except for the three only other goth kids in the school - yeah right) because she's different. Mercedes is the most popular girl at school who's main goal is to make every loser's life a living hell. One day, both girls are "taken to a remote location where [they are] strapped down and sedated..." (I sh*t you not) and wake up in a world where Jade is the popular girl and goth is the trend and Mercedes is the loser along with the other preppies. The only person who does not seem to be effected is "the mysterious new boy in town," Clarik.

    Wow. Just reading the premise makes me gag.

    It's not a bad idea having two people switch places. Too bad it has been done to death with movies like

    ,

    , and

    . Of course, even old ideas can be ressurected with vibrant characters, quirky dialogue, and an interesting setting among other things. Does this book have any of that? Pffft. Of course not! That might make it - gag -

    . And by god, we can't have that here!

    You must have gathered by now that I really hate this book.

    You might be wondering how the switch itself happens. A magic potion? A fortune cookie? Pissing in a fountain? Nope. The school principal takes Jade and Mercedes to an old dilapidated building where they are strapped down and drugged. 0.0 Uh, correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm pretty sure that's illegal. Before they are taken, we see their parents coming out of the principal's office. Did they know about this? I know that I would never sign my kid up for that, even if they were misbehaving.

    It's hard for me to take a story seriously when it's setting is a world filled with stereotypes. This high school is Goth vs Barbies (preppies). Well, not even that since the school consists of only four goth kids. You might be thinking, "Are there any other groups of outcasts in this school?" Nope. Well, if there are, they are clearly not as important or picked on as much as the goths. Everyone else at this school is a preppy. Where does such a high school exist? Please tell me. Not to mention the characterization of goths in this book is beyond retarded. They reject anything that is remotely mainstream, even the word "cool." You know what word they use instead? "Fright." I. Sh*t. You. Not. "That's SO fright!" They can't even say "cool" because it's what ALL the kids say! What bullsh*t!

    Next, the characters. First, there's our lead, Jade Leigh, a self-pitying, irritating, pretentious little bitch who thinks she is so deep. We're supposed to feel bad for her because she is "different." "WAAAAH!! Nobody understands me! Everyone is so mean!" Well, that's life, you stupid bitch. Oh, and her mother is dead and she even saw her die! Another reason we should feel bad! Listen, losing a parent can be difficult. I would be devistated if I lost my mom or dad, but that is not a good enough reasn for me to care about your character. Jade is still a selfish brat and that never really changes.

    The book is told from Jade's perspective (joy). To make it even better, each chapter begins with an excerpt from her diary. Some of them aren't half bad. Then there are incredibly stupid entries like, "When people look at me, they automatically assume i'm dark and weird. Why can't they see the truth? I'm just a girl, trying to find my place in the world." (Chapter 1)

    There is one entry that I like because it sums up Jade's character very nicely: "There are times I wish I were invisible. Which is silly, since I do everything I can to stand out." (Chapter 2) Yes, it IS silly, Jade. I hate it when you get characters that want nothing more than to stand out and then cry when they are not treated like a normal person. It's because you aren't normal. Granted, there is no excuse for someone trying to make you feel like crap, but it sometimes comes with being different.

    There's really nothing to Mercedes except that she's just a bitch. Oddly enough, I felt kind of bad for her. I hate it when authors try to force us to like certain characters and design others so that we have no choice but to hate them. In this case, we're supposed to hate Mercedes because she treats Jade like crap, but I thought that this book treats her so unfairly just because we have to sympathize with Jade because she's the outcast. Mercedes's only defining trait is that she's a bitch.

    Clarik serves as Jade's love interest. He's pretty bland. He's supposedly a tough guy but has a soft spot for Jade. Why? Beause she's special, of course! Not to mention he serves no purpose in this story. *spoiler* We find out that he is working for the principal but this story can still function without him if he just disappeared randomly. I wish I could say more but I can't. Clarik is boring and useless. Plain and simple.

    The side characters are bland. Jade's friends are just carbon copies of her. Same with those of Mercedes. The parents are not characterized. We don't know anything about Jade's deceased mother except that she died in a car accident and decided that while she was dying, it was important to spout out some stupid cliched speech about being yourself. How stupid? Read it for yourself:

    "'There are two kinds of people,' she said. 'Those who coast through life like ducks in a row, following one after the other, and those who ride the waves...Ride the waves, baby, and live. Live'" (p. 130)

    No snide comment necessary.

    Gena Showalter is known for writing romance novels. I have not read any of her other books - I've had too many bad experiences with romance novels - but she must not be very good at writing a decent romance because the love story between Jade and Clarik was not interesting, partly because I didn't care about either character.

    The story runs like clockwork. There are not big surprises or anything. It's just stupid. The plot, characters, setting, writing, romance, and just everything else is absof*ckinglutely stupid and a waste of my time.

    Do not read this. Not even for curiousity sake.

    1/5 stars

  • Joanna

    When I first picked this book, I was so excited to read it because I thought it would be a cute story about a girl who's goth and probably judged for it, but in the end she has this deeper side and when people discover it, she ends up being liked, right? wrong.

    in the story we have Jade Leigh, who is about the most stereotypical goth kid, on the face of the earth. along with her (very defined goth friends whom the author described as "cyber-goth, cementry-goth, and other types as well). okay, rig

    When I first picked this book, I was so excited to read it because I thought it would be a cute story about a girl who's goth and probably judged for it, but in the end she has this deeper side and when people discover it, she ends up being liked, right? wrong.

    in the story we have Jade Leigh, who is about the most stereotypical goth kid, on the face of the earth. along with her (very defined goth friends whom the author described as "cyber-goth, cementry-goth, and other types as well). okay, right there, is a strike for me. I am a fan of the goth culture, however the fact that the author made it so sterotypic really angers me. They wear blacm, hate school, have dyed hair, peircings, and "dabble in the magic arts". Not all goths are like this! and while some of these things are trends, it doesn't mean that everyone is a part of them.

    secondly, the rudeness twords her classmates and teacher. As if the goth subculture didn't already have a bad rep, but then here's this mopey teen girl giving it a worse name by arguing instead of just letting it go. And on a sidenote, if you don't want people judging you, don't refer to them as "Barbie Clones". Its shallow-minded and doesn't make you any better than them.

    the third strick is the fact that there's only barbies, and goths at this school. the only nuetral person was Clarik and even then, he had his hidden ajenda.

    overall, this book was a disaster for me to read, it was predictable, had really no message, and all in all just wasn't a good book.

  • Yuki Burton

    Jade is so spoiled. If I had acted this way at her age, I'd have gotten my little ass kicked sky-high to Mars and back.

    Name choices are quirky at best. Clarick? Was that really necessary?

    Moral of story: all popular people are shallow and all nonconformists are deep thinkers - not.

  • Miranda Reads

    When the author of the

    announces that she's rewrote her first YA novel.

    Honestly, after reading the Everlife series, I cannot imagine anything worse.

    And then I read the reviews for Oh My Goth.

    Already got the original from the library and pre-reserved the rewrite.

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