It’s been a week or so since I finished Those Girls, and I still can’t decide how I feel about it. A book full of cynicism, f-words, out-of-control behavior and unpleasant (at best) characters, it has more of a reality show feel than anything.
Each of the main characters is a type: tough bitch, drunken slut, nerd yearning to break free. There’s a lot of drinking, swearing, smoking, sex, and talking behind each other’s backs like they don’t really like each other – which sometimes, they don’t.
Alex is the chain-smoking nerd who has been in love with her best guy friend, Drew, forever. He, of course, doesn’t know it; but her best friends, Mollie and Veronica, have watched Alex pine over Drew as long as they can remember. Mollie, the mean one, dates a virtual sociopath, Sam. He and his friends are immature jocks who enjoy drinking, trying to get girls to have some kind of sexual contact with them and throwing epic parties. Veronica, who became (more or less) a third wheel to Alex and Mollie’s friendship will do anything with anyone. Her wealthy parents, now divorced, leave her on her own much of the time. She yearns for any kind of human contact, so she usually ends up drunk, letting guys use her like a blow-up doll.
The basic plot, surrounded by all sorts of debauchery and unpleasantness, concerns the change in the relationship with the girls. It’s probably been happening slowly and without their noticing, but all of the sudden, they each feel that things aren’t the same between them. They used to tell each other everything, but the secrets they now keep are pulling them apart. Alex has joined a band, and is relishing her life outside of the girls’ school life. Mollie doesn’t really like Sam and knows he’s a jerk, but her status would change if she let him go. And Veronica wishes that she felt better about herself and didn’t let people push her around so much.
But being a teen can mean not showing the truth; keeping the wants, insecurities and hopes away from prying eyes. And when a revenge plot goes south, the girls have to face all of these things head-on.
Those Girls by Lauren Saft will be published tomorrow, June 9, 2015, by Poppy. A free copy of this book was given to Ink and Page in return for an honest review. Big thanks to the Publisher, the Author and NetGalley.
Genre: Young Adult Fiction Contemporary Romance
Ages: 15 and up