Geek Girl: Picture Perfect by Holly Smale

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Geek Girl: Picture Perfect by Holly Smale

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Category: Teens
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: Robert James
Reviewed by Robert James
Summary: While it's strongest when focusing on the established characters, this is a fun addition to a very good series.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 400 Date: June 2014
Publisher: Harper Collins Children's Books
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 978-0007574568

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Spoiler warnings for Geek Girl and Model Misfit.

Harriet Manners is moving to New York. Her head is full of facts about the Big Apple, but will this be enough to allow her to cope with life across the Atlantic. And why does Lion Boy seem so distant?

I’ve been a huge fan of the Geek Girl series since book one was first released in 2013 and, given I constantly complain about the lack of respect shown to lighter teen novels, it’s been thrilling to see Holly Smale’s books do so well not just with the buying public but also with prize panels, as the first took home the Waterstones Prize for Teens. With Model Misfit being even better than the original, for me, this third was one of my most-anticipated books for a while.

And maybe it’s a case of my expectations being a bit too high, but I didn’t think it quite lived up to the first two for me. Partly it’s an issue with the characters – Harriet herself is still a wonderful narrator with a strong voice (although she does seem to be making many of the same mistakes over and over again.) My other favourites, though, Toby and Harriet’s gran Bunty, didn’t play as big a part here and those that replaced them – model-stylist Kenderall, possible new love interest Caleb and strange governess Miss Hall – weren’t as interesting to read about. It’s notable that by far the best scenes involve the established characters – Wilbur, boyfriend Nick, Harriet’s parents, Toby and their friend Nat, and even school bully Alexa feel really vividly brought to life compared to the newer additions.

Despite my issues with some of the newer characters, it’s still well worth a read. Holly Smale’s writing style is easy to pick up and much harder to put down, Harriet is a sympathetic main character who you’ll want to succeed even when she’s not helping herself, and it’s got an ending which is actually my favourite of the three books so far, being lovely, sweet and satisfying.

Definitely still a recommended series.

I think fans of this would enjoy the newest teen model in YA fiction, Jessica Cole. Check out her first adventure at Code Red Lipstick by Sarah Sky.

Holly Smale's Geek Girl Book in Chronological Order

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