Tuesday, April 7, 2015

REVIEW: Madeline Cain, Adventures in Fashion (+$30 Amazon GC Giveaway!)

Title: Madeline Cain, Adventures in Fashion
Author: Emily Craven
Series: Madeline Cain #2
Pages: 450
Date Published: 2015
Publisher: Craven Publishing
Format: Kindle
Genre: Chick Lit
Source: Goddess Fish Blog Tours
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Synopsis:
Madeline Cain knows that after six chaotic months, the rest of her time in New York City will be smooth sailing with Kevin -- her new squeeze -- by her side. That is, until Madeline's idols drop a bombshell - she needs to pick a specialisation before the year is out or risk losing the career of her dreams. The problem? She's about as sure of her photographic passion as a hiker is of outrunning a bear.

Thus Madeline begins her search for her one true path with student-arranged assignments featuring certifiably insane children, lip-synching rockers, a dog whisperer, and... zombies? But it's not until Madeline secures a 'life-debt' by saving a potential mobster from a gun-wielding cross-dresser that she sets her sights on an amazing internship opportunity.

Is her new patron really part of the mob? Can she nail this internship when all her experiments are going to hell? And how does she deal with Kevin's obsession over her escapades?

~My Thoughts~
I've never heard of having to choose a photography specialization, and I work at an art school that features photography prominently. Still, if we look at photography as a field that one must specialize, like medicine, then I suppose that Madeline Cain is the new Meredith Grey. She's an intern of sorts, figuring out what to do and how to do it without coming off too crazy...though that's a questionable goal when you are Madeline. 

When one of her assignments result in the rescuing of a mobster from a dangerous cross-dresser, Madeline's already pretty skewed world goes off-kilter. Her new internship may be the best, or worst, thing that ever happened to her. 

This was a long one, and I wasn't really expecting it. Chick lit, primarily books about chicks and fashion, tend to be on the short variety of about 100-200 pages of fluffy, cutesy, lite reading. While  Madeline Cain is all of those things, the book lasts for three times longer than most of those fluffs. However, the formatting could be in play when it comes to length. This book is super unique is that it's told through what is supposed to be Madeline's facebook page. 

I enjoyed the unique way that the book was presented, though that made the reading of the piece slightly discordant...kind of like what would happen if you were trying to piece a life together based off of a Facebook page. Other cool aspects were a QR code that brought you to a welcome video, and other sorts of interactive media that made reading this book into an experience rather than just a book. 
~Try an Excerpt!~
Enough was enough. The constant thought storm was getting me nowhere except nauseous.

So I asked myself: what would Mum do?

The answer?  A pros and cons list.

**PROS & CONS**

PRO: Sorella is awesome-sauce on wonder-bread. If you could crack her brain, gold would surely fall out. You’d be rich. In knowledge that is, not golden brains.

CON: Ted just told a room full of women who have nothing else to do with their time, about an opportunity that allows them to get high-end fashion for free. Competition is going to be like a cage fight with a chimera.

PRO: You’re not done with NYC, not even close. Leaving the city after a year is like licking the outside of a chocolate ice cream and never taking a bite. This job gets you a green card so you can go past licking and crack open that chocolate casing to suck on that sweet, sweet creamy centre.

CON: How are you going to build a portfolio of fashion snaps when your wardrobe consists of broken high heels and jackets worn by waiters at a pizza store? You’ve got five planned gigs, but can’t guarantee all your subjects aren’t going to be colour blind, let alone wearing underwear. To turn this to a PRO, you need clothes that make people look good, rather than look like an 80’s boy band.

PRO: Your boyfriend is hot, he’s not camera shy, and is one model that will get a kick out of you fussing over him for hours. Perfect for underwear modelling. Use this gift wisely.

CON: Not really committed to fashion. Doesn’t mean it won’t become an obsession that sees me horde hundreds of Jimmy Choos, but just that I was never that girl who cut out outfits from my Mum’s magazines and made them for my Barbies. I had mud pies that needed making and smooshing in my brother’s face. To turn this into a PRO I need to learn how to make people look cool. You can learn fashion from watching America’s Next Top Model right?

CON: Having to listen to Tara Banks on America’s Next Top Model.
PRO: Clothes. Lots of them.

CON: Models. Lots of them. Could end up in a situation where I give into the urge to bludgeon them with a camera.

PRO: You would have a real photography job, one that supported a healthy diet and regular bowel movements. One that makes use of everything you’ve learnt this year, making you an expert, a player, a person of interest but for the right reasons, not because you were followed by a man with a fake moustache. It would give you some direction, a clear path, a strong mentor, a specialisation rather than playing ‘hobbies’ like you use to play ‘dress ups’.


CON: You could stuff it all up.
~Meet Emily!~ 
Emily Craven was first inspired to placed pen to paper when she was 13, after she learnt her favourite author, Isobelle Carmody, began her first novel at 14. Emily finished three books while completing a Bachelor of Science (Space Science and Astrophysics and Geophysics) at the University of Adelaide. So technically, she can claim to be an astrophysicist (stars), geophysicist (rocks) and writer (crazy). She writes YA fiction, fantasy and non-fiction and teaches teenagers storytelling.
Emily will be awarding a set of red umbrella earrings (this is an international giveaway) and a $30 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

35 comments:

  1. The intriguing cover is my favorite part of the post.

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    1. Thanks so much Mai! I think we went through about a dozen different covers before we happened on that one. The original girl had blond hair but the main character was definitely not a blond so the designer had to do some creative colouring.

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  2. I like the synopsis, sounds like a good read.

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    1. Thanks so much for letting me know (us know? The comments know?). It's always nice to know the blurb has hit the mark :) Particularly because it's the most horrible thing to write, trying to give the same feel of the novel without giving away the good bits? It's like word tetris.

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    1. Hurray! Thanks for commenting on it. I promise it's not like a movie trailer where it has all the funny parts packed in leaving none for the rest of the book. It's hard to know what will work when you pluck it out of context so nice to know it worked :)

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  4. I really appreciate the honest review

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    1. Thanks Ree :) Glad it made sense without the rest of the book for context. Do you do pros and cons lists? Mine end up sucking so I stick to running around the house flailing my hands.

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  6. I liked reading the review and book excerpt, Thank you!

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    1. Thanks for commenting Claudia I'm so glad you like the excerpt *Wipes sweat off brow*. Do you do pros and cons lists? Best P&C list I came across was when two of my friends started dating each other and one of my friend's brother (the girl's brother obviously) made a list of P&Cs for the new boyfriend that went along the lines of: PRO: Can play the guitar, does astrophysics. CON: Dating sister.

      Best list ever.

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  7. Thanks so much for having me on the tour Andra! It's super appreciated :) How wonderful it must be to work in an arts school, do you do any art yourself? (How about everyone else here? Do any of you create?)

    I forgot to mention that I'm happy to give anyone who purchases a copy of 'Madeline Cain: Adventures in Fashion' before the end of the tour on the 28th April a free copy of the first book in the series 'The Grand Adventures of Madeline Cain'. Just email me the reciept of your purchase to: emily (at) madelinecain (dot) com.

    I'm glad everyone seemed to like the excerpt. I'm here if you had any questions about writing, books, chicklit, the meaning of life... I'm not fussy ;)

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  8. Does anyone here do pros and cons lists? Or do they just end up like Madeline's?

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  9. I liked the Pros & Cons. I can not tell you how many pros and cons list I did while I was growing up.

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    1. Mine always ended up being really lame. I think I wasn't as imaginative as a kid as I boasted :)

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    1. I'm so glad you liked it Mary! I did a big cover redesign for when this book came out so good to know we hit the mark with it :)

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  11. Enjoyed reading the excerpt and review.

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    1. Thanks Karen :) Hopefully it put a smile on your face for the day!

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  12. The excerpt certainly grabs your attention and is intriguing and I loved the mini bio too Always interesting learning a little about the author. Thanks for sharing :)

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    1. Hehe, thanks Debbie! If you've got any questions I'm happy to answer them :) How the series came about was a very interesting tale of throwing my plot line to my facebook friends and seeing what came back! It was born on facebook so it only makes sense that it looks like facebook inside the covers!

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    2. It's amazing how things are born. Are your friends and family zany and you knew they would come up with something interesting? :)

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    3. My parents and sisters are some of the weirder people I know ;) But you totally guessed right, they do know I like the quirky stuff so they dug deep, shook hands with their internal weirdo, and gave me their best odd ball ideas! I think what surprised them was how I twisted their ideas into something that actually made sense.

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  13. Adorable cover and great excerpt!

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    1. I'm so glad you liked the cover Glenda! I wanted readers to only be able to see part of her face on the cover, I thought it would be cheekier that way. Awesome to hear the effect worked!

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  14. I enjoyed the review but honestly the giveaway rocks!

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    1. I came across the earrings on Etsy and was like "I must have a dozen of those immediately!' And this is the first time I got to use them in a giveaway :) unfortunately these don't yell abuse at people when it rains like the umbrella in the book but I'm sure with enough petitioning to the Etsy creator we can work something out ;)

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  15. My favorite part of the post is the review, thank you!

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  16. The review was very interesting and I'll keep an eye out for the book

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  17. OMG I speed read and came across this: "PRO: You would have a real photography job, one that supported a healthy diet and regular bowel movements. " And laughed out loud and scared the cat. :)

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    1. Yes! *self-high-five* so glad it made you laugh. It's always a bit of touch and go when picking an extract for a tour. Now I can add 'cat agitator' to my CV ;)

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  18. "... Thus Madeline begins her search for her one true path with student-arranged assignments featuring certifiably insane children, lip-synching rockers, a dog whisperer, and... zombies?" Really? Count me in, LOL!

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    1. Every good novel needs a zombie or two. Just a requirement for life. Like sleep, or chocolate.

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  19. This books sounds like a really fun read, just my kind of book :) Thank you

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