I received this book for free from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.A Dress for the Wicked by Autumn Krause
Published by HarperTeen on August 6, 2019
Genres: Historical Fiction, Fantasy
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Nothing much happens in the sleepy town of Shy in Avon-upon-Kynt. And for eighteen years, Emmaline Watkins has feared that her future held just that: nothing.
But when the head of the most admired fashion house in the country opens her prestigious design competition to girls from outside the stylish capital city, Emmy’s dreams seem closer than they ever have before.
As the first “country girl” to compete, Emmy knows she’ll encounter extra hurdles on her way to the top. But as she navigates the twisted world of high fashion she starts to wonder: will she be able to tailor herself to fit into this dark, corrupted race? And at what cost?
I have to say, even though I know it’s bad, the cover is what originally drew me into reading A Dress for the Wicked. Just look how gorgeous it is! I loved the coloring and the fact that it looked painted. It’s something I’d love to have framed on my wall. However, despite that, I wasn’t the biggest fan of the story on the inside.
What I liked
- The premise. I think the idea of a competition to get into the fashion industry with high stakes is such a good concept. It immediately hooked me from the beginning, and I was excited to see all the insides of the Fashion House and how cutthroat it could be.
- It all felt very much like The Hunger Games Capitol, especially with the whole idea of the city versus the country. Everything was so extravagant in the city, yet the country was very much looked down upon, and I was excited for Emmaline to prove everyone wrong.
- This book is historical fiction, but it’s like an alternate time period. It was very interesting, and that made it almost feel like fantasy to me, because it was sort of like a reimagining of historical London.
What I disliked
- There was so much buildup for the competition, only for it to completely fall flat. I was so excited with where the book was going, and I felt like there was going to be some huge reveal or something, but then everything went down and I was like… wait, what? That’s it? I really just wanted more, especially because of how great the book was going for the longest time.
- I had trouble connecting to the setting because of the lack of world building. To me, world building is extremely important, especially when it’s a made up setting. It’s very different than, say, reading a book that’s actually set in London, because I actually know about London. I think some more world building would’ve been helpful at times.
- The storyline with Emmaline’s mother. From the beginning, the reader knows that the mother used to live in the city, though it’s sort of suspicious and Emmaline looks into it. However, after finally finding out what her mother was doing in the city, it was disappointing.
Needless to say, the things I didn’t enjoy as much sort of outweighed the things that I did. That doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t give this book a chance, since you might have better luck than me!