Wednesday, September 4, 2013

The Good, the Fab and the Ugly (Poseur #2) by Rachel Maude -- Book Review

The Second Book in the Poseur Series...and Sexism


Poseur book 2
Published: 2009

From the back of the book:

Halloween comes to Winston Prep and the newly named teen fashion label POSEUR introduces this season's must-have accessory: a red-hot handbag called the Trick-or-Treater. But whose design is sweetest? Janie, Petra, Melissa, and Charlotte all insist: Mine. You see the problem? 

Good thing, then, for the sweetness of revenge. Time to dust off that costume and put your best mask forward. 'Tis the season for candy, conflict, and couture. 

Once again, we are treated to the adorably cute fashion sketches, signed by Janie Farrish, who is the designated artist in the Poseur group. But they're actually done by Rachel Maude (except the Compai ones in the back). So beautiful. I was inspired to start some of my own! 

The story continues the four girls' quest to promote their fashion label, Poseur.
This time, Halloween is coming up, and they are trying to decide on a bag to promote that can still be worn year-round. Yes, the Halloween part is just a marketing gimmick, and a really clever one. Each girl has a completely different vision for how the bag should look like. While they try to solve this and decide on a final bag design, each of the girls encounter their own personal problems. 

One thing that stood out to me was how the consequences of sex scandals reflect differently on guys and girls. In Poseur (book 1), Nikki and Jake (Janie's brother AND Charlotte's ex-boyfriend) were caught kissing. As a result, Janie was ostracized by the entire school--she was ignored by all the groups, rejected by her former friends, and worst of all, spit on by a mob of students. 

What does Jake get?

Oh, he mopes. He mopes around the house, Charlotte's mad at him for being disloyal, and Janie's mad at him for putting her social status (whatever she has) at risk. 

Most of his negative consequences are private and self-inflicted. In public, guys and eighth grade girls actually admire him more for what he did. Meanwhile, Nikki gets shamed by society in public. Double standards are a terrible thing that we see in many high schools, and it shows up in this novel. 

Overall, the book was okay. I laughed at some parts. Felt angry in a couple.  Got sleepy in others. Nikki's a side character but I felt more attached to her than the Poseur label girls because the stakes for her are so high and she has lost so much.  As for everyone else,  there are similar issues here as the ones in the first book. Some minor characters get a POV chapter and then disappear, while others are introduced and then thrown aside.

Before I read this one I was excited to read more, but now I don't feel that inclined to read the next book, except for the pretty fashion drawings and DIY guides. That would be my main reason for reading another book in this series. If you don't like fashion, then subtract half a star from my rating for this book.

From what I've read online, there seems to be no fifth book coming out. I hope Maude comes out with a new series. I'd check it out because while her characters aren't very convincing, her writing is pretty humorous to read. Maybe the next series will have better-developed characters. 

What I would dine on while reading this book: 

Huh. The characters mostly just snack on stuff in this book.
  • a small bag of baby carrots
  • a horizontally-cut Turkey sandwich


Still curious about the Poseur series? Read more about it:

What do you think about this series? Is Poseur #3 better than Poseur #2? Share your perspective in the comments! I'd love to hear your thoughts. If you convince me that Poseur 3 is worth reading, then I will check it out.

Thanks for reading! <3 

--Ellen

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