The Daughters by Joanna Philbin
Fourteen year old Lizzie Summers is the only daughter of the famous, gorgeous supermodel Katia Summers. Lizzie has always felt in the shadow of her mother. For one thing, she looks nothing like her. Her hair is red and frizzy, she has thick eyebrows, very large eyes, and a long, meandering nose. Having a supermodel for a mother doesn’t help either. The paparazzi are always trying to take pictures of Katia. When this happens, Lizzie would stay in the background and try to go unnoticed through the crowds, which was very easy for her. Lizzie always considered herself weird-looking, however, when a fashion photographer believes that Lizzie is the “new face of beauty” and offers to take photos of her, things change significantly. Lizzie has never dreamed that she would model like her mother, or be any good at it either, but after trying it a few times with the fashion photographer, she feels exhilarated and different at the same time. Having her best friends, Hudson and Carina, supporting her, they add to the exhilaration. She learns that it doesn’t matter what people think about her, not even her mother, but what she thinks of herself. Although she faces other obstacles throughout the novel, the main message is that Lizzie finally starts to accept who she is and gains self-esteem that she never had.
Joanna Philbin’s style of writing is easy to understand and very modern. She includes some common problems that everyone undergoes at some point or another in the novel. This book is great for teens in middle school and in high school. I believe that many girls can relate to what the main character, Lizzie, is going through. You will understand how important friendship is and learn an important life lesson. You should be proud of who you are, no matter what you look like. Priscilla D. Teen Reviewer