Author: Elaine Dimopoulos
Length: 336 pages
Publisher: HMH Books For Young Readers
Classification: Young Adult, Dystopian
Release Date: May 5, 2015
Source: e-galley via NetGalley (Thank you, HMH!)
Read: April 2015
In Marla Klein and Ivy Wilde’s world, teens are the gatekeepers of culture. A top fashion label employs sixteen-year-old Marla to dictate hot new clothing trends, while Ivy, a teen pop star, popularizes the garments that Marla approves. Both girls are pawns in a calculated but seductive system of corporate control, and both begin to question their world’s aggressive levels of consumption. Will their new “eco-chic” trend subversively resist and overturn the industry that controls every part of their lives?Smart, provocative, and entertaining, this thrilling page-turner for teens questions the cult like mentality of fame and fashion. Are you in or are you out?
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***I received an e-galley of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review***
Material Girls is an interesting and unique dystopian novel that really surprised me.
I think that Material Girls is a very fascinating and unique story. I found it to be entertaining and thought-provoking. There were some twists and surprises that I didn't see coming. Overall, I enjoyed reading it.
In this dystopian future, the creative industries pretty much rule the world. Fashion, Music, Movies, and Video Games: These are the jobs that everyone wants. Teens become tapped at the age of thirteen and those who are picked, begin working at one of the creative industries. While the others work at the less desirable jobs as teachers, scientists, and doctors.
Material Girls focuses mainly on the Fashion aspect. Wearing the latest trends is an important way of life to many. And these trends expire. This story is told from two points of view. Marla and Ivy. Marla works for one of the top fashion houses, looking at garments and picking out the next best trend. Ivy is a famous pop singer. She wears the approved garments and makes the trends popular. But after the girls start examining the trends closer, they both start questioning what they know. Marla and Ivy both start to realize that they are not in control of their own lives. Which leads the girls to creating their own "eco-chic" garments and trends. Will this be the start to a revolution to overthrow the fashion industry?
One thing that really stood out for me from this story was the interesting narrative. Marla's point of view is told through first person, while Ivy's point of view is third person. It caught my attention immediately and I even went back to the first chapter to make sure. I was worried that it would keep me from connecting with the story (because I thought I would focus too much on the switching narratives) but that wasn't the case! I think that the switching narratives was interesting and it really works for the story. After the first few chapters I didn't notice it anymore, it really flows with the story.
I found the idea of a world focusing on the creative industries to be very fascinating and not far-fetched. I am not that into fashion, but I do think that it very popular and a growing industry. Which is why I think that the world Dimopoulos created isn't hard to picture.
I really like Marla and Ivy. They are both excellent characters and it was easy for me to cheer for both of them. I really enjoyed getting to know them and seeing the world from their perspective. They both had great character development through the story as well. I enjoyed their interactions with each other and with the other characters. I think they are both strong female characters.
I enjoyed reading about Marla, especially when she started figuring out how things really were in the fashion world. I really liked the friendships she developed with the other fashion designers. And how she wanted to stand up for what she wanted and for the right thing.
I also enjoyed reading about Ivy. She cares for her family a lot and I enjoyed seeing that side of her. I also really enjoyed that she stood up for herself and fought to have her own choices.
I enjoyed reading Material Girls so I do recommend giving it a read. If you like fascinating and unique dystopian reads, then I say give it a read. It reminded me a bit of Uglies by Scott Westerfeld.