The Princess Diaries meets “Model Behavior”. Harriet Manners is a GEEK. A geek that is about to be discovered…and discover that maybe being a model will help her morph into something more than just that label.
I really enjoyed this fun, upbeat story about a slightly neurotic 15 year old who was walking through the mall and literally fell into a modeling booth where she is given the opportunity to change her fate. Or so she thinks. While I didn’t realize this book was set in England until about 30 pages in, the dialogue and witty plot kept me engaged and smiling.
I can definitely remember, and relate to, these awkward phases of puberty where nothing feels or fits right and you aren’t even comfortable in your own body. You can barely figure out which way is up while you’re drowning in hormones and an easy opt out seems like the best idea at the time until you realize it’s nothing like what you anticipated. Which, of course, is essentially what happens to Harriet.
She and her best friend Nat attend a fashion show at a mall a few hours from home and while Nat is the one who hopes she will be noticed by an agent, it is Harriet who stumbles into it. And obviously she can’t tell Nat that. So the lies begin and so does the whirlwind adventure.
It’s a little scary, a lot emotional, and a bit of fun all rolled into one experience, that doesn’t pan out like Harriet expects. Every page adds a new twist and dabs in some characters that give you insight into Harriet and her perceptions of reality. To me, it was a lot like The Princess Diaries. Nerdy girl becomes transformed while still trying to retain her own identity and sense of self. Which as a teenager isn’t the easiest thing to do anyways.
There are some sad moments and some entertaining ones, some funny and some that make you cringe, but that’s what made the book so enjoyable to me. It was a nice “reality” to live in for awhile, to experience some drama in someone else’s life for a bit…that you know, didn’t involve swords, kingdoms, or demons.
Even though it was a little predictable, it add some curves that gave it a little more edge. Much like reading The Princess Diaries. it gave real insight into the girl’s head, rather than just a glossed over version for entertainment. Here’s to hoping the next book dives more into the actual fashion world and Harriet’s experience there.
Goodreads rating: 4 stars
My personal rating: 88
- Writing style – 10
- Plot – 8
- Dialogue – 9
- Personality of Main Character(s) – 9
- Love story – 7
- Invokes emotion – 7
- Synopsis accuracy – 9
- Consistent level of interest – 10
- Stays on topic – 9
- Accuracy of genre/genre blending – 10