Meat Market by Juno Dawson*

I was provided with an ARC of this book to review.

(Not quite spoiler-free, but no actual spoilers. Am v cryptic!) 

I’m so behind on my book reviews – like, 2018 behind – but I had to review this little gem from Juno Dawson as there’s a huge buzz around it right now (rightly so!) and I loved her novel Clean from last year. 

Goodreads description:

“Jana Novak’s history sounds like a classic model cliché: tall and gangly, she’s uncomfortable with her androgynous looks until she’s unexpectedly scouted and catapulted to superstardom.

But the fashion industry is as grimy as it is glamorous. And there are unexpected predators at every turn.

Jana is an ordinary girl from a south London estate, lifted to unimaginable heights. But the further you rise, the more devastating your fall …

Honest and raw, this is a timely exposé of the dark underbelly of the fashion industry in an era of #TimesUp and #MeToo. It might just be Juno Dawson’s most important book yet.”

For me, this was around a 3.5 – 4 star book. I didn’t love it in the same way as Clean, but it was still a bloody good read. And I agree, it’s a really important story that needed to be told.

I found some of the characters pretty difficult to warm to, but I loved learning about the day-to-day workings of the fashion industry (without the glitz and glamour) and from the unique view of a girl who has zero interest in being a model.

I loved how diverse and real her friends were, and the way they spoke like actual teenagers felt authentic – even if the appalling grammar bugged me every time. 

The main ‘event’ in the book was incredibly well written. I felt my skin crawl and my stomach turn. It was horrific in the best possible way. However, it felt as though everything was wrapped up a little too neatly at the end. 

Juno Dawson writes incredible YA fiction that doesn’t pander to the PTA, and instead, grabs society by the balls and yells the truth in its face. And I love it. 

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