[Review] #FashionVictim by Amina Akhtar

#FashionVictim#FashionVictim by Amina Akhtar

Fashion editor Anya St. Clair is on the verge of greatness. Her wardrobe is to die for. Her social media is killer. And her career path is littered with the bodies of anyone who got in her way. She’s worked hard to get where she is, but she doesn’t have everything.

Not like Sarah Taft. Anya’s obsession sits one desk away. Beautiful, stylish, and rich, she was born to be a fashion world icon. From her beach-wave blonde hair to her on-trend nail art, she’s a walking editorial spread. And Anya wants to be her friend. Her best friend. Her only friend.

But when Sarah becomes her top competition for a promotion, Anya’s plan to win her friendship goes into overdrive. In order to beat Sarah…she’ll have to become her. Friendly competition may turn fatal, but as they say in fashion: One day you’re in, and the next day you’re dead.

Honestly, I’m pretty sure I missed something. The book had a killer selling point but I was left disappointed in the end.

I feel like this book was supposed to be satire but I didn’t get that vibe at all. There’s a ton of problematic elements such as unchallenged racism, and fat shaming, sexism, and ableism. The amount of girl hate is almost overwhelming, there was also the “gay best friend” trope, and mental illness is almost seen as a joke. 

I really am confused about this book. Our main character is an editor for a high fashion magazine. She’s obsessed with one of her coworkers and she will do anything to have her as a best friend, even if it means “eliminating” those who try to keep them apart.  I felt like we were supposed to root for her but I didn’t? Actually, all the characters were pretty terrible and unlikeable.

The writing was also lacking. The writing was like Chanel lines from Scream Queens. The difference is that in Scream Queens, only the Chanels talked like “spoiled assholes” and not everyone else. In this book, every single person was a Chanel. Everyone talked in cringy text lingo (OMG, WTF, etc) and language overall just seemed outdated.

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This was basically the whole book.

That’s why I’m still wondering if this was at an attempt for satire? There is no way the fashion world is like this. I was cringy at the parts where Anya’s boss was making Anya go on a diet and forced her to basically starve herself. In the book, a size 6 is considered extremely overweight which does not make any sense to me. Anya isn’t even a model, she’s just a fashion editor! Even if she is a model, it’s still inexcusable.

Since there was literally zero likable characters, I couldn’t care less about what happened to anyone. The characterization of the character also kept changing, confusing me in various places. Anya will praise a character for being “nice” but then that character would purposely exclude or do something horrible to Anya. One character will say something but their actions will contradict what they said. It was just weird and maybe the author was trying to create unreliability with the characters but it just ruined the consistency of the story.  I have no idea why Anya was obsessed with her coworker because she was just a cardboard cut out of everyone in this book. Anya’s character had potential but we were just not given enough background info and the author almost left the reader hanging in the end.

The investigation aspect of the book was an absolute joke. It was unrealistic, problematic and overall was just pointless in the end. Oh, and the plot twist was kind of a cop-out.

Again, maybe this is the authors attempt at satire. In her bio, she has a job in the fashion industry so maybe this was just her poking fun at the common misconceptions about it. However, this book just didn’t leave a good taste in my mouth and it just seemed incredibly unrealistic to me.

Even if this book didn’t have problematic material the story still lacked a lot of aspects that make for a good thriller. There was no tension or suspense and although there’s a lot of thrillers that have horrible people (Gone Girl), there is usually someone– or something–you are rooting for. Unfortunately, I just wanted the story to end.  I also understand that this was supposed to be a humorous book but I didn’t laugh once. Overall, this book fails at what it was trying to sell.

This could have been amazing but it fell short for me personally. I usually love morally grey books but this one was just missing that gritty aspect and unfortunately, I don’t recommend #Fashionvictim.


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Top 5 Reasons Why I May Not be a Good Reader/Blogger

I thought I would reveal some of my reader/blogger sins.

(1) I don’t read most of the “Hyped” books.

Now, this is not because I want to be “cool” and “hipster.”Some of the reasons why I don’t read a lot of hyped books is because (1) Most of them is YA fantasy/Adult Fantasy and that genre is out of my element and (2) My main source of reading comes for the library and hyped books have a pretty long waiting list.  Therefore, I have to read a lot of backlist books which I’m completely fine with! There are some 2018 books I’ve actually read but it’s been all YA contemporary and no one really likes that genre anymore I guess.

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(2)I HATE monthly subscription boxes

Look, I have too much stuff at my house/room. I don’t need any more random stuff I’ll never use. I can see why people love them, but they are just not for me (especially not down to spend $30+ a month) Most of it goes into the trash/storage anyways.

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(3)The Goodreads rating is my number 1 determiner whether or not I read a book.

Someone can say how awesome a book is but I’ll look at that pesky number on Goodreads and if it’s below a 3.7 I’m like uuuuuuhhhhh maybe I’ll wait (However I recently read a 3.4 book…and I didn’t like it).

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(4) I annotate my books, but not as serious as other people.

I have no system or organization. I don’t color code tabs (sometimes I just use post-it notes). I’m a messy annotator. I wish I could be an “aesthetic annotator” but it just won’t happen. My books have uneven underlines, my handwriting is trash and I have several coffee stains in each book (how can I read without my coffee?).

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(5) I love book reviews but I am more interested in reading book reviews on books I already read.

I feel like the point of book reviews is to use them as a source in determining whether you should read/bye a book. However, I like to read a book then read multiple reviews! I really hate to say this but I rarely read book reviews on books I haven’t read yet!

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Friday Reads: 10/05/2018|Spooky Paranormal Reads

Happy Friday! Here are all the books I’m currently making my way through! October will be the month where I will go back to reading thrillers/mysteries/paranormal/fantasy!

Continue reading “Friday Reads: 10/05/2018|Spooky Paranormal Reads”

#SPOOKTOBER TENTATIVE TO BE READ

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When I saw Vanessa @throughprosetintedpages announce this fun month-long challenge, I just had to join! I want to make it a priority to read as many “Spooky” books as I can for the month of October. I know I am usually not the best with readathons but since this is a month long, it shouldn’t be too bad! I will also be doing weekly updates.

Bingo 1-B

The challenges are pretty simple: read 8 books that fall within the bingo card. Vanessa provides two different ones but I decided to go with Card 1.

-Dark Fantasy
-Thriller
-Witches
-Zombies
-Vampires
-Victorian Gothic
-Horror/Slasher
-Morally Grey

 

 

My TENTATIVE TBR (because I’m a certified mood reader). I have a couple of books for each challenge because I am so indecisive! I might read just one or both of them (or even none).

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Are you participating? What book should I prioritize?

 

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The Top 5 Books I Want to Buy!|Because Being a College Student is Hard

The library is my best friend. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good bookstore, but I don’t like the prices. Online shopping is good and all but I still don’t want to pay $7-$20 for a book (I’m super stingy, I know)

I’ve read a lot of my favorite books through the library and I really want to own them but can’t because I have loans, bill, grocery expenses, etc that I need to prioritize because, well, I need to live.

To ease my disappointment for not being able to buy these book, I thought I would share 5 books that I love and I wish I own. I might make this a series because there’s a whole lot of favorites I don’t own.

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Let’s Talk About Love by Claire Kann

Let's Talk About Love

“If knowing you’re asexual makes someone see you differently, then they don’t deserve to be in your life.” 

If I have to pick a YA contemporary to die with, it would be this one. I want to own this so I can annotate the living soul out of this. Unfortunately, it’s not in the budget, especially since it’s only out on hardcover. Good news: It’s always available through my library because for some reason no one is reading it?!?!? Their loss I guess.

 

 

Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn

Sharp Objects

“The face you give the world tells the world how to treat you.”

I actually use to own this book but when I left for university, my mom donated a lot of my books and this was in the pile. I was really sad when I found out my mom donated my entire Flynn collection! I found some of her books cheap at thrift stores ($1 books yall!!) but I have yet to find this one anywhere for that price.Welp, oh well. Maybe one day this book will be in my life…but not today

 

 

Not That Bad edited by Roxane Gay

Not That Bad: Dispatches from Rape Culture

“No one gets to rake over the details of my life and determine if they think what happened to me was bad enough for me to have earned my scars, my limitations, my superpowers.” 

I really wish I owned this book. I was arguing with my mother over the Kavanaugh hearing and I just wanted to throw this book at her (I love my mom but living in a hardcore republican household can be difficult, especially for someone like me).  Again, this book is just powerful and I just wish more people would read it! I loan out my books to friends all the time and this one would be an instant loaner!

 

Ivy Aberdeen’s Letter to the World by Ashley Herring Blake

Ivy Aberdeen's Letter to the World

“Maybe ‘perfect’ was just another word for belonging. For feeling like yourself. It didn’t mean things weren’t hard. It just meant they were right.”

I’ve never talked about this book on my blog but this is one of my favorite reads of the year! It’ a precious queer middle grade that gets it right (unlike some other ones…). It deals with sexuality, trauma, friendship, and family and I just want to reread it even though I read it fairly recently. A winner in my book.

 

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Illustrated Edition)

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Harry Potter, #3)

I solemnly swear that I am up to no good.

Every year, I get a new edition but I didn’t get the POA last year (mostly because I didn’t ask for it). However, I still want this because I would love to collect the entire series in these editions (also because once again, my mom accidentally donated my entire HP hardback collection).

 

 

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Are there any books that you wish you owned? Are you just as stingy with money as I am? Let me know!


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[Review] Piecing Me Together by Renée Watson|A Difficult Book to Review but One You Should Read

Piecing Me TogetherPiecing Me Together by Renée Watson

Goodreads Summary: Jade believes she must get out of her neighborhood if she’s ever going to succeed. Her mother says she has to take every opportunity. She has. She accepted a scholarship to a mostly-white private school and even Saturday morning test prep opportunities. But some opportunities feel more demeaning than helpful. Like an invitation to join Women to Women, a mentorship program for “at-risk” girls. Except really, it’s for black girls. From “bad” neighborhoods.
But Jade doesn’t need support. And just because her mentor is black doesn’t mean she understands Jade. And maybe there are some things Jade could show these successful women about the real world and finding ways to make a real difference.
Friendships, race, privilege, identity—this compelling and thoughtful story explores the issues young women face.

 

Maxine is right and wrong. Those girls are not the opposite of me. We are perpendicular. We may be on different paths, yes. But there’s a place where we touch, where we connect and are just the same.

When you read a book, don’t you ever think that the author intended to write the book specifically for you? That’s what I felt while reading Piecing Me Together. It’s a heartwrenching story about a black girl who simply wants to be seen and not mended.

There’s, unfortunately, a lot of prejudices that young black girls have to face today. There are perceived as not smart, not creative and not ambitious. Throughout my entire life, I had these same prejudices thrown at me, especially since all throughout grade school, I stood out because there weren’t really a lot of other black girls. With Jade, she’s going through these same struggles. However, we see that she’s brilliant, she’s artistic and she has a lot of ambition that runs in her veins.

Piecing me Together stresses that black girls need to be seen as equal, as beautiful. Black girls need more opportunities to rise up in the world, not just the SAT prep, extra tutoring, mentorship or any other activities that are about “fixing” them. I’m talking about giving them an actual chance to use their talents and giving them experience.

And this makes me wonder if a black girl’s life is only about being stitched together and coming undone, being stitched together and coming undone.

The book also explores the everyday racism black people have to endure, sexism, rape culture, and police brutality. There are conversations on privilege, both in the perspectives of a black teen and a black woman. Jade also talks about body image and self-confidence and most of the time, she loves the way she looks but sometimes she doesn’t and that’s okay.

It’s hard to review a book that relates to me so much. I love Jade but her mentor, Maxine is also a compelling character. We see that Maxine isn’t the perfect Mentor, as she sometimes flakes and gets caught up with her own drama. Jade almost acts like she’s the mentor to Maxine because Jade is the ultimately the person that turns Maxine around. I still couldn’t help but fall in love with Maxine because although her Jade doesn’t have the same kind of struggles, they still face a lot of the problems black women face today.

At school, with my white friends and teachers, there were all these stereotypes I felt I had to dispel, and, with a lot of my black friends, I had to prove that I was black enough—whatever that means. It was complicated,

The book is less than 300 pages but it packs a punch like no other. If you happen to be a black teenager reading this review, you are beautiful, you are heard, you matter. 

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Friday Reads: 9/28/2018|”SPOOKY” READS

Happy Friday! Here are all the books I’m currently making my way through! October will be the month where I will go back to reading thrillers/mysteries/paranormal/fantasy!

Continue reading “Friday Reads: 9/28/2018|”SPOOKY” READS”