An aspiring fashion designer spends a summer in LA as an intern for the successful but demanding Lorelei Roy.
In a new series featuring African-American teen protagonists, billionaire entrepreneur Harman Holt chooses 10 students each year upon whom to confer once-in-a-lifetime career opportunities. Thea Roberts is shocked and delighted to be chosen but soon discovers that the fashion world is cutthroat and people are not what they seem. Jamie, the employee who introduces Thea to the House of Lorelei Roy, insults and back-stabs Thea. Madison Belle, despite being a famous teen model, shows Thea compassion and kindness. Lorelei herself can be a cruel bully but is also unexpectedly supportive of Thea’s work. Despite the title and several ominous references to extreme dieting, an eating disorder appears only as a side plot. Madison faints while trying on clothes, and the industry’s callous indifference to her condition is disturbing but believable. Chapters are short, but each scene and detail is carefully chosen. Both Madison’s struggle with her eating disorder and Thea’s newfound push for the fashion industry to move away from ultraskinny bodies and showcase “more girls who look like girls” are resolved in a feel-good but hard-to-swallow ending.
A well-crafted and relatively easy read, despite a simplistic resolution. (Fiction. 12-18)