19-year-old Clementine Liu has moved from Paris to New York as a second-year transfer student at the Parsons’ School of Fashion to pursue her dreams of becoming a fashion blogger.
With her rainbow-colored attire, she dresses “like a unicorn” amid the New York fashion uniform of blacks and grays and worries about making it in the cutthroat environment of Parsons. Biracial (Chinese/French) Clementine finds support in her mother’s cousin, Maddie, who is a Parsons professor, and stereotypically flamboyant classmate Jake, who is of unspecified ethnicity and implied, but never stated, gay. However, she also makes a few enemies. From there, the plot offers neither surprises nor subtlety: Clementine receives a scholarship to start her dream blog, dates a hunky older man, falls apart when someone posts mean tweets about her, thinks her boyfriend is cheating on her, and seeks revenge on a mean girl. Only one character has a multidimensional personality, and every conflict engenders a wild overreaction followed by a quick resolution. These college students seem awfully immature yet not quite interesting enough to be a guilty pleasure. Being on the inside of the New York fashion scene should be delicious and alluring but just feels reduced to tedious lists of what each person is wearing and what the “look” of the ensemble is.
A disappointingly unoriginal take on the world of fashion and the effects of cyberbullying. (Fiction. 13-18)