Friday, January 2, 2015

Review: Model Undercover: New York: Stolen with Style by Carina Axelsson

Unlock the secrets of the fashion world in this fun and breezy mystery!
Axelle Anderson is an ace at two things: solving mysteries and modeling. So when the world’s most famous black diamond is stolen from a cover shoot in New York City, it’s no surprise that Axelle is called in to work her skills as an undercover model. But with a witness who won’t talk, a blackmailing thief, and an agent intent on filling Axelle’s schedule with interviews and photo shoots, will she be able to crack the case?
See how Axelle became a super sleuth in Model Undercover: Paris

I read Model Undercover: Paris awhile back and I remember liking it, so when I saw that this book was up on NetGalley, I just knew I had to have it.

In Model Undercover: New York, Axelle is in New York to investigate the disappearance of the Black Amelia, a valuable black diamond. The thief is cunning and seems to be toying with Cazzie Kinlan, Chic's editor-in-chief and the one who was responsible for keeping the diamond safe. Axelle needs all the help and time she can get to solve this mystery, but her agent is eager to make sure that Axelle is booked as much as possible. How will she pull this off now?

I like reading mysteries and trying to solve them before the main character does. Most of the time, I'm successful, so when a book makes me sweat when trying to solve the mystery, I appreciate it. I was able to figure out who stole the black diamond before Axelle did, but not by the typical margin of pages I usually do. There were also some plot twists and red herrings that I didn't expect or only half-expected. That's a good thing.

As for the fashion and modeling stuff in the book, since the book takes place during New York Fashion Week, there's plenty of that. I'm by no means a fashionista, but I do like pretty clothes and I do read magazines, newspapers, and websites, so most of the designers, fashion terms, and modeling terms mentioned were familiar to me. If you're obsessed or even mildly interested in fashion, you'll enjoy reading the behind-the-scenes look at photo shoots and runway shows. For those who aren't as well-versed in fashion, there's a glossary near the end that may help you out.

I've always dreamed of going to New York, so obviously, aside from the mystery, my favorite aspect of the book was the setting. The descriptions are quite vivid, and the reader is practically given a walking trip of some famous sites in New York. Thanks to reading dozens of books and watching dozens of television series and movies set in New York, I was able to recognize most of the places mentioned. I was particularly pleased when a couple of the characters visited the High Line. I remember seeing that from Anthony Bourdain's The Layover and I thought it was pretty cool.

Overall, this book gave me a Nancy Drew (the movie starring Emma Roberts) and So Undercover (starring Miley Cyrus) vibe, but a hundred times better than both.

Thanks to NetGalley and Sourcebooks Jabberwocky for the e-ARC.


  1. The mystery is relatively complex.
  2. The fashion-related elements were fascinating.
  3. The descriptions were quite vivid.


  1. There were a couple of moments wherein I felt like Axelle was taking her privileged life for granted.

As I stood in Miriam's high-ceilinged wood-paneled living room and looked out the floor-to-ceiling windows, Central Park west, Columbus Circle, and Fifth Avenue lay before me like spangled ribbons teeming with life.

  1. You like mysteries.
  2. You adore fashion.
  3. New York is one of your most favorite cities in the world. 




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