Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Some Girls Are by Courtney Summers

Courtney Summer's site
Series: n/a
Copy obtained: bought, pb
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Released: Jan 2010
Rating: 4.5/5

Climbing to the top of the social ladder is hard--falling from it is even harder.  Regina Afton used to be a member of the Fearsome Fivesome, an all-girl clique both feared and revered by the students at Hallowell High... until vicious rumors about her and her best friend's boyfriend start going around.  Now Regina's been "frozen out" and her ex-best friends are out for revenge.  If Regina was guilty, it would be one thing, but the rumors are far from the terrifying truth and the bullying is getting more intense by the day.  She takes solace in the company of Michael Hayden, a misfit with a tragic past who she herself used to bully.  Friendship doesn't come easily for these onetime enemies, and as Regina works hard to make amends for her past, she realizes Michael could be more than just a friend... if threats from the Fearsome Foursome don't break them both first.

Tensions grow and the abuse worsens as the final days of senior year march toward an explosive conclusion in this dark new tale from the author of Cracked Up To Be.

I am so, so glad that I bought Some Girls Are despite not really enjoying Courtney's first book, Cracked Up To Be. I wasn't going to, but so many people talked about it and recommend it, and Courtney's new book, Fall For Anything, that I thought I'd get it and give it a try because I know that just because I don't like one book/series from an author, doesn't mean I'll dislike all their work. And this is one time where it's really paid off because Some Girls Are is a fantastic book!

Regina was one of the popular ones, one of those dreaded Mean Girls, best friend to the top of the tower, Anna. But now she's frozen out. Everything Regina's done to other students in the past is being done to her. She's caught between fear, a desire to fight back and the knowledge of just what those girls are capable of. What she's capable of.

I was hooked pretty much from page one of Some Girls Are. It just grabbed me and didn't let go, I finished it easily within a few hours. It's heart breaking really, very painful reading, for many reasons. Regina is such an odd character to me, not because she's not drawn realistically, because she is. But because I did feel very bad for her, the things she was going through, how she was suffering. And yet at the same time, I kind of hated her too. Because of some of the things she's done, how she handled certain situations (in the past more than what we actually see). There was this constant internal conflict going on in my head trying to figure out just how I felt about Regina. The winning emotion though was pain. It's such a painful journey for her. It's kind of hard to understand why she was as she was, one of that 'Fearsome Fivesome' and yet, completely simple as well. But if it can be considered as such, it's the only 'simple' thing about this book.

It's so complex, one thing after another, one twist, one action changing everything over and over. Regina attempting to figure out how to survive high school with people who really hate her, surrounding her, how to connect with those who she'd previously 'ruined' in a similar way. It's so real, and so emotional I was in tears repeatedly but I barely put it down because I needed to know what happened next. I needed to see if it could get worse, because surely it couldn't...but it did. Some Girls Are is an intense, thought provoking read. It captures the harsh realities of both sides of that popular/un-popular high school social structure extremely well and how bullying can destroy lives with a few well placed words. There were times when Regina was struggling to breathe through her panic, and I felt almost as bad. It was just that intense! There's a little romance involved, but it's every bit as conflicted and confusing as everything else going on. And I loved it. How Regina's relationships with those around her develops over the course of the book is just excellent. It's such a painful book, but I thoroughly enjoyed every moment of this story. Fantastic work and now I'm really excited to get my hands on Fall For Anything and any future titles from Courtney. Just awesome.


xkenaix said...

I'm dying to read this book. Really dying to read it after your review! Damn you Cem!

Clover said...

I'm such a huge fan of Courtney Summers. I thought this book was amazing and like you, I will eagerly await any new book of hers! I cried messy tears with this one, so very emotional.