Material Girls is another YA book that adults will love but real YA’s might find to be too much work.

Material Girls is another YA book that adults will love but real YA’s might find to be too much work.

Dystopia meets the fashion world in Material Girls.  Expect a lot of awards from adults who think teens should be thinking harder while they read.  I thought it had an excellent message for YA readers, but I’m an adult, so . . .  What will teens readers like?  This is set in a world where teens rule the entire economic world.  Really!

In a future where teen consumerism dominates the economy and being a unique individual is scorned, Marla and Ivy are beginning to question the roles they play in the manipulative grand scheme of the corporations that dictate society. This is a book about deciding if the freedom to make your own choices in everything from your career to your accessories is worth fighting for. Set in the cut-throat worlds of the fashion and entertainment industries, readers will delve into a world of glamour only to find hidden depths. Material Girls is well written and plotted. The dual narratives are shared between Marla, a sixteen year old fashion judge for one of the major fashion houses, and Ivy, a teen pop sensation. Both characters are rather superficial at first, but as the story progresses, it becomes clear that they are more than initially meets the eye. It takes a short while to sort out the social order of the setting, but once it is established, it is easy for readers to navigate. There are some pretty heavy handed themes about consumerism, corporate manipulation, and personal choice in this book. The message is one that I would love for my own daughter to consider. However, the mechanics of staging a revolution in the corporate world are rather boring, and both the pace and reader interest hit a wall when they become the focus. It is hard to predict whether high school readers will have the resilience to push past that roadblock to get the message. Hiding a smart book in fluff could be a brilliant move or it could be a disaster. I would recommend this book to high school readers and urge them to stick with it, but this may be one that is more popular with adult readers of YA rather than with YA.

I received an ARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.


About queenbook

When the final bell rings, I stash those messy piles of essays and analysis assignments in a desk drawer and I head home to a pile of good books. My kids and dog eat too many chicken nuggets and the house could be neater, but as long as I get my daily read, I guess we are doing all right. When I was twelve and fifteen and eighteen and twenty, I believed I needed to get out there and do those things I had just been reading about, which ended in disaster, tears, a tattoo that scares me every time I catch a glimpse of it in the mirror, and the realization that some of us are meant for action, and some of us are meant to critique the pace of action in a book. I read primarily YA fiction as I have a rather hulking classroom library and a hundred high school readers to engage daily. Nothing makes me happier than coming to school and finding an impatient teenager waiting by my door to turn in a book and get another one just like it. I adore a good zombie, a medieval princess, or girl assassin (I would like them all in one book if you are a writer looking for some inspiration). I add historical mystery to my wish list a year in advance, and you should get out of my way when the next Outlander book comes out. I have an embarrassing fondness for rock star books, but only if they don’t get too trashy and embarrass me. My favorite book of all time is The Blue Castle by L.M. Montgomery. My book boyfriends include Gilbert Blythe, Alonzo Wilder, and Jamie Fraser. They are mine and you can’t have them.

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