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The International Writers Magazine:'a teenage sex and the city in London'.

Fashionistas by Sarra Manning
Hodders Children’s Books £5.99
ISBN: 978-0-340-93221-6
Tabz Parkes review

Definition: Someone who eats, sleeps, breathes and lives for fashion.

Hadley, the spotlight character was a huge child star in L.A, she had it all until she sued her father for embezzling her fortune. Struggling to make it back into the industry she moves into a little flat in London with three models, escaping her past, but more so her pestering, money obsessed mother.

We follow Hadley through her diva demands, auditions and drunken nights out. The L.A diva doesn’t seem to quite fit in simple old London. She is determined not to let anyone get in the way of her future, but when people take advantage of her and the public get a very different view, she is forced to re-think her plans.

Hadley’s life could believably portray any of our young stars out there now. This and several modern pop culture references would make it easy for today’s teenage generation to relate to.
This character annoyed me from the first page, she reminded me of those bitchy girls at school everybody has to deal with unless they were one of them. Surprisingly I ended up sympathising with this incredibly flawed, stuck up character after barely being able to stand her which is a great achievement on behalf of the author. I wanted to carry on hating her but was un-able to resist her naivety and funny observations on life. Her little girl in a big world side was irresistible without being sickening. I felt it very fitting due the uproar in today’s ‘Celeb lifestyle’, even more so the failing stars and think it was conveyed well. I have to say though that if I was interested in being a celebrity I would have been somewhat put off the idea. The book was full of humorous quotes and one liner’s, however I am unsure if I was laughing with or at the characters. It was like teenage sex and the city in London. If I had read this book as a teenager I may have become the popular girl at school, but may have missed out on my childhood in exchange for it.
‘There wouldn’t be anything left, just a hollowed out girl where Hadley used to be’.

© Tabz Parkes October 2007

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