Punk Charming

A Mixtape of Travel, Love & 80s Pop Culture

Fiction - Cultural
317 Pages
Reviewed on 07/30/2017
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Author Biography

Laura Quinn was born in Chicago, IL. She grew up in the awesome decade of the 80s, with spiked hair, rubber bracelets, and several pairs of fingerless lace gloves and Doc Martens. Her record collection (yes, vinyl records!) included everything from ABC to Wham!, with plenty of Duran Duran.

Quinn has always had a serious case of wanderlust, and first traveled to Europe in 1986. She packed her Walkman, coins for the pay phone, paper maps and paperbacks. Now, she packs her iPod, cell phone and paperbacks. So far, her furthest points traveled are: Maui (west), Panama (south) and Norway (north and east). A recent trip was driving from Chicago to L.A. via Route 66, with her husband and dog (who enjoyed 70% of the car space). Her two cats gladly stayed home with their substitute human servant, having no love for the jostling contraption that exists solely to abduct them to the evil vet.

Punk Charming is Quinn’s debut novel. The sparks of an idea for the story came to her while in Oxford in ’86. Years later, the sparks finally sparked her into action, and Punk Charming came to life. Quinn is now working on the sequel to Punk Charming, as well as a new mystery series. When not writing (or waiting on her furry kids), she teaches writing at local colleges and is a writing coach. As a public speaker, Quinn has been featured at Comic Con, Pop Culture Con, University of Chicago, and other local colleges and libraries.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Sefina Hawke for Readers' Favorite

Punk Charming (A Mixtape of Spiked Hair, An Elusive Heir and Spiteful Snares) by Laura Quinn is a cultural fiction novel that would appeal most to a mixed audience of young adults and adults who enjoy romance in foreign countries. Kate Spenser is an eighteen-year-old college student who was accepted into a summer study-abroad program in Oxford, England. Kate began her journey armed with her excitement at visiting Europe for the first time, a French-English dictionary, and a Walkman; yet Kate never thought that her travels would lead her through perilous dangers and the chance of true love. Does Kate have what it takes to find her Punk Charming again or will she forever regret what could have been?

Move over Lizzie McGuire, Sam Montgomery, and Lane Daniels to make room for Kate Spenser in Punk Charming by Laura Quinn. Unlike the previously mentioned characters, Kate does not place her entire life on hold simply to go searching for the man of her dreams; instead she finds her true love while adventuring through France. I was originally worried that the story would be boring because of the love at first sight theme, but the author did a wonderful job in making the attraction between the two characters feel so real. Both characters also developed as individuals throughout the course of the story, which made them feel more like real people and not fairy tale characters. Overall, I was truly surprised by how much I enjoyed this love story!