Meat Market, Juno Dawson (Quercus Children’s Books)

All that glitters is not gold. It’s airbrushed. We know that by now, right? Of course we do. And yet we look at the girls and boys in magazines and wish we were just like them. Flawless skin, flawless dress sense, flawless lives. We know it’s bullshit. But on some weird level we also don’t. It’s a bit like how we know God isn’t real and yet when our hair won’t go the way we want it to, we fucking pray. There’s something in us that can’t completely accept that we’re just tiny bugs hopping around on a floating rock – or that there’s no big guy in the sky with a can of hairspray ready.

So, yeah, living in the same blind spot, is that idea of Perfection. It’s because whenever we turn on the TV, or whatever, there are all these people who don’t seem to be covered in puss-filled zits. So what if we know almost absolutely definitely that they’ve been airbrushed. They look so real! Meat Market, then, is a book for dimwits like me who still can’t get it through their head that a model life is not really a model life. It tells the electrifying story of sixteen-year-old Jana Novak and takes us onto the catwalk at London Fashion Week and behind the scenes of an industry that totally relies on clever lighting and a shit-ton of concealer. Now if only I could get a lifetime’s supply of both those things. Or is that completely not the message Juno Dawson is trying to deliver?! You decide!

You should also read The Stepford Wives.