Review Blog

Jun 26 2014

Love is the new Black by Chrissie Keighery

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Hardy Grant Egmont, 2014. ISBN 9781742973562.
(Age: 15+) If you are looking for realism, depth of thought and emotion and well-developed three dimensional characters Love is the new Black is NOT for you. It is a light weight narrative romance that, at best, might satisfy some readers' fairy tale fantasies.
Piper Bancroft is an eighteen year old girl, who having failed to gain entrance into her creative writing course at university is sent to Melbourne to live with her (fairy?) godmother who has secured her a job on the well-known fashion magazine, Aspire. Hence begins a narrative of predictable and stereotypical structure. She meets the 'evil' Vivian, her boss, whose treatment of her subordinates is reminiscent of Miranda Priestly in The Devil Wears Prada. She rapidly establishes friendships with some of her workmates and Kara Kingston, a top fashion model with a secret. Add Prince Charming, the acting CEO, to the mix and the tale becomes predictable in the extreme.
Keighery liberally peppers the story with reference to fashion names such as Jimmy Choos, Marc Jacobs, and Alexander McQueen as well as providing detailed descriptions of the glamorous outfits. That the novel is set in the modern age is clearly established with references to Snapchat, Skype, Twitter trolls and internet dating. As would be expected in a novel such as this, there are sexual and drug references.
Love is the new Black would have little appeal to readers of serious fiction.
Barbara Rye

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