“Beauty is only temporary, but your mind lasts a lifetime.”
What happens when you fuse the brain of an AP student inside the body of one of the world’s top supermodels? You get the complete package, of course. Meet Emerson Watts, an average teen with an obsession for video games, a slightly hefty figure, the ultimate rivalry with the queen bee of the school, and a severe allergy to fashion. Em wants nothing to do with the world of lipstick and high heels, despite everyone’s disapproval, and is perfectly content (or as content as she could get) with her “tomboy” reputation.
Everything changes when Em is dragged by her little sister to the grand opening of the new Stark Megastore in town, an event so lavish that the acclaimed face of the company, supermodel Nikki Howard, is making an appearance. After a fatal accident that puts her in the hospital, Em finds herself in her worst nightmare - she is literally in the body of the famed model. Forced to put her old life in the past, Em must now come to terms with her new identity and take on the role of Nikki. Besides, how difficult can it be pretending to be someone you’re not?
I know what you’re thinking. I thought the description of the story was cliché myself when I first saw it. However, I thought the idea of taking one’s brain and putting it into the body of another was a pretty interesting idea and definitely not something you hear about every day. I gave the book a chance, and it is SO much more than what the description tells you about. Em is a person who subconsciously struggles with taking control of her life as well as self-confidence - something that I know many girls and boys - myself included - can relate to. Airhead deals with these topics through the narrative of a realistic character, which gives the readers a stronger connection when looking through her eyes. Em is given the opportunity to live the life of someone who has everything, from endless supplies of money to natural physical beauty. Through these crazy experiences, she embarks on a journey of self-discovery, learning more about herself than she ever would have had she remained in her former life. Along with the main plot of the book, Em also learns more about the truth of living a luxurious lifestyle.
Airhead is a compelling read filled with loads of dry humour provided by the often confused protagonist. It focuses a lot on the real definition of beauty, not the artificial one that society implants in our minds through pop culture and media. If you do decide to read this book, you’ll probably want to check out the sequels, Being Nikki and Runaway, as well.
That’s all for today. Hope you’re enjoying your books so far and the countdown ‘til the holidays. Until then, happy reading!
Ottawa Public Library’s Teen Bloggers in Residence are fantastic teen volunteer writers from across the city. They blog about their favourite teen reads and authors, and get writing assignments to cover special teen events happening at the library. Their residency rotates throughout the year. Call-outs for upcoming terms are made through the Teen Blog in May/June, September/October and January/February.