New York has Jacobs, Paris has Chanel, Milan has Versace and Tokyo has . . . Hello Kitty toilet plungers? With its cute-obsessed catalogue and magazine market, anyone who is anyone knows that modeling in Japan means being at the bottom of the fashion industry. Blake, Jess, and Hailey are doing their best to survive yet another casting where pigtails and toddler-impressions are a must when they stumble upon the opportunity of a lifetime. The prestigious Satsujin company has selected them to compete for a campaign that will transform the winner from commercial nobody to haute culture superstar faster than you can say Vogue Italia.
Of course, nothing is ever what it seems in the fashion world. Just ask all those dead girls . . .
Publication date: April 28th 2016
Genres: Mystery, Young Adult
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3.5 Out Of 5 Stars
Genre: Another-World, Mystery, Suspense, Teen--
Jess, Hailey and Blake are spending the summer in Tokyo in the hopes of making a name for themselves and some easy money in the much in demand modeling field. What starts out just like any other modeling trip, their plans soon go awry and they are now part of a competition to see who will get a million dollar opportunity to represent a mysterious clothing brand. An amazing chance to become famous puts the three girls at each others throats, mishaps soon being blamed on each other and strange occurrences threaten the girls. They have no idea what kind of competition they are really involved in.
So, WTF. That thought kept circling through my head while I was reading the book. At one moment I was lost by the odd and bizarre world I found myself submerged in, and the next minute I was intrigued by same said world. This book was such a mess, but I am pretty sure I don't mean that in a bad way, more in a "what the heck just happened" kind of way. In case you can't tell by my rambling, I am all twisted up by this book. I love anything having to do with modeling/modeling competitions since I am in love (aka obsessed) with America's Next Top Model (which I will miss desperately since it has been cancelled). When I first read the synopsis for this book, I knew I needed to read it, and I was hoping that it would be like a season of ANTM. Well, on one hand it kinda sorta was, with the over the top challenges and prizes as well as all the drama between house mates. But then add in the mental sabotage, lies and the murdering. This book was such an odd mix of ridiculousness and danger there was absolutely no way I could have predicted what would happen next. I was kept on my toes, for sure.
Each chapter is told from a different perspective, alternating between each girl. Man are these girls a mess. We have a world saving OCD girl who was having an affair with her teacher, a mean party girl who is escaping her drug using/dealing waste of a mother and the rumors at school, and a sheltered girl who is terrified of disappointing her mother and with a stalker floating around. Each girl deals with their own damage while thinking the worst of the other two, yet against all odd, they are all the others have. The drama between the girls was great, full of angst, snark, suspicion, cynicism, sorrow and the potential for friendship. I at times was mad or empathized with all the girls equally, and I am not sure who I wanted to win.
I had no idea that this was the first in a series, but with all the loose ends hanging around I can see that there is sooo much more that can be written about. I still feel a little bemused and off-kilter about what I read, and I am not sure if I loved it or not, but it was definetely unique and stuck with me. I am such a sucker for this model drama/mess that I look forward to the next book in the series.
I received this title from the author in return for my honest review.
Jackie Amsden worked as a fashion model in China, Japan, and Taiwan before retiring at the age of eighteen after one too many agent threats, nude photo shoot requests, and self-loathing-induced Pocky binges. If you’d like to learn more about her decent into the darker side of Asia’s candy-coated modeling industry sign up for free installments of her upcoming memoir and get updates about the sequel to The Tokyo Cover Girls at www.jackieamsden.com.
You can also find her on Facebook
I admitted my guilty pleasure of watching modeling competition reality shows, so leave a comment with your guilt pleasure for a chance to win an ebook copy of The Tokyo Cover Girls
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Thanks for hosting today, Katherine! This sounds like nothing I've ever read before - def unique and compelling.ReplyDelete
Hi Katherine, thanks for the review! I love that the book made such an impact on you, even if you aren't sure if its a good one. And don't lose hope re: ANTM. I heard it might come back yet: http://variety.com/2016/tv/news/americas-next-top-model-vh1-new-episodes-tyra-banks-1201712989/ReplyDelete
Jackie you totally made my day! Thanks for this :)Delete