Published: Poppy (April 5, 2011)My Thoughts: First off, I'm gonna need someone to tell me how I can get my hands on a dress that allows me to travel back to Titanic time. Or at least circa 1999. Because I'd like to do the whole "King of the World" thing and see if Leo felt really embarrassed doing that.
Series: Book #1
Source: From publisher, for honest review
GoodReads Summary: When Louise Lambert receives a mysterious invitation to a traveling vintage fashion sale in the mail, her normal life in suburban Connecticut is magically transformed into a time traveling adventure.
After a brief encounter with two witchy salesladies and donning an evening gown that once belonged to a beautiful silent film star, Louise suddenly finds herself onboard a luxurious cruise ship in 1912. As Alice Baxter, the silent film star, Louise enjoys her access to an extensive closet of gorgeous vintage gowns and begins to get a feel for the challenges and the glamour of life during this decadent era. Until she realizes that she's not just on any ship-- she's on the Titanic!
Will Louise be able to save herself and change the course of history, or are she and her film star alter ego, destined to go down with a sinking ship in the most infamous sea disaster of the 20th century?
No can do? Ah, well.
I was 100% shocked that Louise knew as much about fashion as she did. I knew "jeans" and "t-shirt" when I was 12, but she was hardcore about some vintage clothing and ancient outfits that had stories behind them. One thing that I tended to skim over were the lengthy descriptions of the outfits. I don't care what kind of neckline a certain dress has. I'd have preferred some elaboration upon Louise's character development over that. However, I am not a style-conscious, so you savvy fashionistas may eat this up!
But the full-color photos? The cover? SWOON. The book is beautiful even when you remove the jacket cover! I love looking at pretty things, and these drawings were so breathtaking that I do believe I skipped over the descriptions and flipped straight to the photos. You guys, this book made me long for the picture books of yore. When your brain didn't have to try and figure out exactly which shade of blue a characters eyes were or how they style their hair, because it's drawn out beautifully for you on the next page.
I enjoyed reading about Louise as 1912 teen superstar Miss Alice Baxter, but especially the parts where she interacted with real Titanic passengers, such as Captain Smith, John Jacob Astor, and the Strauses. Have I researched these folks in real life? Of course not, but I remember them from the movie and that, in itself, was appealing to me. Louise's budding friendship with Anna, the maid, was a very sweet one. Though the fate of the Titanic didn't change at all in this book, I'm glad there was a silver lining in Anna. It's refreshing to read a book where the plot is centered on friendship instead of romance.
The Time Traveling Fashionista was a surprising little gem with a great premise and intricate, beautiful illustrations as a bonus. Not to mention a very quick read! Though it felt a little young for my tastes, I can say that this will likely be a must-buy for the younger YA and MG crowd.
And by the way, check out my dear friend Capillya's blog. She's featured TTTF's cover designer, Alison Impey!