The main characters of “Face Value” are two young girls, Paula and Lauren. Both are rising stars in the London fashion scene. Glamour and money await these young models, but behind the parties and designer clothes is a sinister underworld that is slowly drawing them in. One will survive, but the other will not.
When I read “Face Value” I was confused at first by the book's layout. The novel makes use of alternating passages to draw parallels between the lives of the two girls. However, not only do Paula and Lauren live in different time periods, but Lauren is Paula's daughter, a fact that is not immediately understandable. Once I figured this out I was able to make more sense of the storyline. In the end, most of “Face Value” focuses on the mistakes that Paula made and how her daughter Lauren almost falls into the same danger.
Overall I would say that “Face Value” is a decent read. Catherine Johnson depicts high-fashion from behind the scenes, showing the emotions and pressures in vivid detail. I even enjoyed the plot, though the dual time frame aspect made it slightly difficult to understand. The characters are all well defined with feelings and thoughts that make them believable. To summarize, “Face Value” is an enjoyable book that mystery fans are bound to enjoy.
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