Story of a Girl

Story of a Girl[Read] ➭ Story of a Girl Author Sara Zarr – Bluevapours.co.uk When she is caught in the backseat of a car with her older brother s best friend Deanna Lambert s teenage life is changed forever Struggling to overcome the lasting repercussions and the stifling role When she is caught in the backseat of a car with her older brother s best friend Deanna Lambert s teenage life is changed forever Struggling to overcome the lasting repercussions and the stifling Story of ePUB ✓ role of school slut, she longs to escape a life defined by her past With subtle grace, complicated wisdom and striking emotion, Story of a Girl reminds us of our human capacity for resilience, epiphany and redemption.

Sara Zarr is the acclaimed author of four novels for young adults Story of a Girl National Book Award Finalist , Sweethearts Cybil Award Finalist , Once Was Lost a Kirkus Best Book of Story of ePUB ✓ and How to Save a Life Her short fiction and essays have also appeared in Image, Hunger Mountain, and several anthologies She lives in Salt Lake City, Utah, with her husband, and online at sarazarr.

Story of a Girl PDF/EPUB ´ Story of  ePUB ✓
  • Hardcover
  • 192 pages
  • Story of a Girl
  • Sara Zarr
  • English
  • 07 June 2019
  • 0316014532

10 thoughts on “Story of a Girl

  1. Tatiana says:

    Update 6 12 12 I think it s even better upon reread Adding a starSome books are written about lovable characters who you admire and cheer for Some are written about flawed characters like Deanna, and the author s purpose in such cases is to make us, readers, not to love, but maybe understand them I realize why Story of a Girl received such mixed reviews Not every reader cares to get to know someone like Deanna She is a loser, she is a bad friend, she is a slut, right It is so much easier t Update 6 12 12 I think it s even better upon reread Adding a starSome books are written about lovable characters who you admire and cheer for Some are written about flawed characters like Deanna, and the author s purpose in such cases is to make us, readers, not to love, but maybe understand them I realize why Story of a Girl received such mixed reviews Not every reader cares to get to know someone like Deanna She is a loser, she is a bad friend, she is a slut, right It is so much easier to call her all these names and be done with her Too bad, girls like her are everywhere you look Open any YA book and here she is an incorrigible slut and a rotten person.The thing is, I have a problem with the notion that a 13 year girl caught having sex in a car with a 17 year old guy or any girl for that matter is a slut I am sorry, but I am not willing to put this ugly label on a child who has no emotional or intellectual capacity to consent to sex If nothing else, Sara Zarr highlights the psychological immaturity of girls like Deanna and that sex is not something that they want to do, but a means to satisfy their need for intimacy, companionship and attention that they don t get from their families and friends Zarr addresses these issues with a lot of understanding, care and compassion.I can t be mad at or dismissive of Deannas of this world Instead, I feel a lot of sadness towards them Not only their reputations are ruined, but their years of childhood are lost and their innocence is tarnished forever I hope they can get over their skewed views of what intimacy is, forgive themselves and move on to be better, happier people I want them to succeed

  2. Reynje says:

    4.5 starsI know full well how dramatic this is going to sound, but this book broke my heart Not violently, or loudly, with a single devastating blow but quietly and slowly, taking it apart piece by painful piece Whatever emotional sandbagging I d done in the intervening years proved a poor defence, and in just 192 pages Sara Zarr s excruciating story had brought me right back to being sixteen again, vulnerable and raw with self loathing What strikes me most Sara Zarr s writing, and Story of 4.5 starsI know full well how dramatic this is going to sound, but this book broke my heart Not violently, or loudly, with a single devastating blow but quietly and slowly, taking it apart piece by painful piece Whatever emotional sandbagging I d done in the intervening years proved a poor defence, and in just 192 pages Sara Zarr s excruciating story had brought me right back to being sixteen again, vulnerable and raw with self loathing What strikes me most Sara Zarr s writing, and Story of a Girl in particular, is its empathy In telling the story of Deanna Lambert, struggling against the perceptions and repercussions of her past actions, Zarr cuts right to the emotional truth of the situation Doing away with superfluous drama and paring the story back to the bare bones, Zarr writes from Deanna s perspective with palpable understanding I feel like she gets it And that kind of validation is a powerful and moving thing, particularly for readers who find echoes of their own personal experiences in Deanna s.Knowing that this was Zarr s debut novel, I think I had unconsciously tempered my expectations, particularly after recently reading and loving How To Save a Life It was somewhat humbling, therefore, to realise that this slighter, quieter book, was equally powerful There are no wasted words Every scene is layered with significance, down to the small details that albeit sparsely flesh them out The gestures, dialogue, setting, the spare descriptions are imbued with relevance to the overarching themes and characterisation In few words Zarr paints a sharp and insightful picture of one teenage girl s experience with shame, judgement and forgiveness.Perception, and its accompanying shades and variances, are subtly examined in Story of Girl From the wide spread labelling of Deanna as the school slut and the ways in which stories are manipulated, through to Deanna s perception of herself as unloved by her father, the various lenses Deanna is shown through are tackled without any heavy handed declarations from Zarr on the rights or wrongs thereof Nor are the characters cast in clear cut roles as antagonists and protagonists It simply is what it is And I think readers would hard pressed to say they didn t know someone, if not themselves, who had been subjected to the perpetuation of a stereotype or label, or on the flipside even participated in doing so Zarr s story is a deft and effective deconstruction of the some of the myths surrounding the slut tag, and for all its economy with words it packs some intense and thought provoking subtext I can understand why some have found Story of a Girl s ending to feel less than adequately positive However, coming from a somewhat non huggy family myself, it felt honest to me Sometimes, it s as likely for someone to sayI was wrong and I m sorryas it is for them to light themselves on fire Sometimes shifts in perception, or forgiveness, are not accompanied by declarations or grand gestures Often they come on gradually, unheralded And sometimes, when one has forgiven themselves, the same acknowledgement from others is no longer all that necessary anyway Redemption can be a self fulfilling thing To this end, I think Zarr s conclusion to this book struck the right chord, with small glimpses of hope and change, while remaining in keeping with the gentle character growth throughout.It would be dishonest of me to say that reading Story of A Girl didn t leave me feeling scraped and bruised and bring me precariously close to an ugly cry in public For a short book it certainly hit a nerve it s not often that I read something that takes me from anger and indignation to intense sadness and beyond But in the end I didn t feel like I d lost anything for reading it On the contrary, I felt like I d been given something important and special Certainly another viewpoint from which to consider things, butthan that, a sense that experiences like Deanna s have not gone unwitnessed That they are understood

  3. Emily May says:

    3.5 stars.I ve taken quite a few lessons from this book and a couple of fellow GR members basically, I didn t know how strong puritanical attitudes still are in the United States or, at least, I didn t realise they are quite so widespread even today I associated them with small communities that share a very conservative religious attitude and never imagined these attitudes towards sex to be typical of just your average American town Well, we learn something new everydayThat aside, I 3.5 stars.I ve taken quite a few lessons from this book and a couple of fellow GR members basically, I didn t know how strong puritanical attitudes still are in the United States or, at least, I didn t realise they are quite so widespread even today I associated them with small communities that share a very conservative religious attitude and never imagined these attitudes towards sex to be typical of just your average American town Well, we learn something new everydayThat aside, I found this book intense and deeply emotional, but by deeply emotional I here mostly mean sad This is not a happy book, very little in it can be called cheerful and I think I would have liked to see the tiniest bit of happiness, or it risks sounding like another Ellen Hopkins FML rant And, well, Deanna s like is pretty shit What does this girl have to be happy about At first I was thinking at least she has a decent friend that she can turn to but it turns out that Deanna s in love with her best friend s boyfriend She is not having a good timeSo, where does it all start Deanna gets caught having sex when she is only thirteen with a boy who is four years older than her Worse, she gets caught by her dad Now she is known as the school slut , she s ridiculed, abandoned by friends and treated like a leper because she had underage sex.Her dad is the most irritating, awful part of the book It really bugs me that the book summary is all about Deanna s desperate search for redemption when, to me, it seems her dad is the one in need of begging to be forgiven What s with the I know I let him down phrases that Deanna keeps on with Un effin believable She was a thirteen year old girl a child and instead of asking why his daughter must go down on an older boy at thirteen in order to feel special and wanted, he attempts to make her feelhorrible and disgusting He s an asshole.No wonder Deanna feels like she has no one to turn to She can t get away from her past and her only hope for escape is with her brother and his new family But does she really have a place with them or is she simply an inconvenience I felt for Deanna throughout the novel, even though I found it hard to accept some of the beliefs and values floating about in this book The author paints a very dark but effective picture of a girl s mind.I wish I knew better where the author stood on some of the issues I discussed I understand that she wanted the reader to know why Deanna felt the need to sleep with Tommy I also see that Sara Zarr never portrays Deanna s father in a positive way thank god but what are her beliefs about sex Abstinence Sluts and slut shaming I d like to know to settle my own curiosity.I also wish the ending could have concludedpositively Deanna sorts a few things out in her life but much still remains the same still, I suppose the author left it in a way that leaves room for hope, at least

  4. Aj the Ravenous Reader says:

    3.5 stars A genuine coming off age story allowing readers to look into the hows and whys of a girl exposed to sex at a very young age, how people easily judge her, cast her off and dub her a slut, avoid her, and pretend like none of them did the same thing when the only difference is they weren t caught by their dads at it.Like the other novel by Ms Zarr I ve read, The Story of a Girl is an honest story that reveals the heart of the 16 year old Deanna She sadly narrates how choosing to do the 3.5 stars A genuine coming off age story allowing readers to look into the hows and whys of a girl exposed to sex at a very young age, how people easily judge her, cast her off and dub her a slut, avoid her, and pretend like none of them did the same thing when the only difference is they weren t caught by their dads at it.Like the other novel by Ms Zarr I ve read, The Story of a Girl is an honest story that reveals the heart of the 16 year old Deanna She sadly narrates how choosing to do the act mostly has to do with her wanting to belong, her need to feel like she is loved and chosen and that it s only a small price to pay to do what the guy wants in exchange of that feeling The sadness resonates throughout the novel as Deanna narrates the aftermath of that ill fated day when her dad caught her with Tommy at the back of the van Everything hasn t been the same both at school and even at home and definitely for the worse But despite everything she s gone through, I really admire Deanna s strength, her ability to see through other people, her selflessness, and most of all her capacity to forgive and forget and eventually try to move on

  5. Catie says:

    This is why I can t read Sara Zarr very often A few years ago, I listened to Sweethearts and I was absolutely wrecked for days Wrecked This book is short, but I believe I experienced my brain s complete range of emotions in those four hours And I m home alone for a bit now, so I was free to pace about my living room, gesturing like a maniac and shouting things like,No Deanna NOOOandOh no you don t, sirandYES It s about fucking time you stood up for her Deanna is a good student This is why I can t read Sara Zarr very often A few years ago, I listened to Sweethearts and I was absolutely wrecked for days Wrecked This book is short, but I believe I experienced my brain s complete range of emotions in those four hours And I m home alone for a bit now, so I was free to pace about my living room, gesturing like a maniac and shouting things like,No Deanna NOOOandOh no you don t, sirandYES It s about fucking time you stood up for her Deanna is a good student, friend, sister, and daughter But none of that matters, because three years ago she was discovered in the back seat of a car having sex with her older brother s best friend By her father Ever since that day she has lived with a label and a horrible legacy of shame Her father can t forgive her, and the school can t forget the infectious story of Deanna, the slut. No one, not even her own family, seems to want to hear her side of the story, or remember that she was only thirteen years old.This book made me extremely angry I like to listen to audiobooks when I get ready in the mornings, but let me tell you it s extremely hard to put make up on when your face is scrunched up in a death stare and your hands are clenched into fists As an aside, I kind of can t wait to get really old, because when my death stare is enhanced by a gummy mouth and wrinkly skin, I think that it actually might kill people There were so many times when I just wanted to shield Deanna and punch everyone else in the face, repeatedly.But then this book gave me something else, which can only be described as beautiful, heartbreaking grace Deanna s strength made me lose my breath and yeah, I ll admit it, sob like a baby When no one else believes that she can be good and clean and new, then why should she be It s so easy to buy into labels and categories, especially when they re given by your own parents But she doesn t. She makes mistakes and fumbles and slowly, finds her way back She s one of the strongest heroines I ve read When no one will stand for her, she takes the brunt of everything and somehow finds a way to keep standing And I love what she does with Tommy There is no black and white here, no easy villains No one in this book is fully to blame for anything Life is a constant struggle, and the only things that keep us together are forgiveness and hope and maybe faith Arrrrghhhh Heart Shattered.Perfect Musical PairingMumford Sons After the StormEvery word of this song seems to apply to this book, but this part especially reminds me of Deanna Night has always pushed up dayYou must know life to see decayBut I won t rot, I won t rotNot this mind and not this heart,I won t rot.And this is exactly what I would want to say to her And there will come a time, you ll see, with notears.And love will not break your heart, but dismiss your fears.

  6. Keertana says:

    Rating 3.5 Stars Sara Zarr is a name that crosses every well read reader s lips at some point every well read reader, that is, except me Thus, when I saw Zarr sStory of a Girlsitting quite alone on the shelves of my library, I just knew I had to pick it up I certainly haven t regretted my choice While this was one of the quickest novels I ve read lately, it packed a whole lot of punch, heart wrenching scenes, and true character connection in such a short amount of pages It was provoca Rating 3.5 Stars Sara Zarr is a name that crosses every well read reader s lips at some point every well read reader, that is, except me Thus, when I saw Zarr sStory of a Girlsitting quite alone on the shelves of my library, I just knew I had to pick it up I certainly haven t regretted my choice While this was one of the quickest novels I ve read lately, it packed a whole lot of punch, heart wrenching scenes, and true character connection in such a short amount of pages It was provocative, compelling, and is a story I really had to mull over for hours afterwards since it simply would not get out of my head It wasn t perfect, but it was perfect in the lessons it conveyed and that, I believe, is what is truly important.When Deanna is caught nearly having sex in the back of a truck with her older brother s best friend, Tom, her entire life is ruined Not only does Tom spread nasty rumors about her, destroying her social image, but it was herfatherwho caught her, effectively building up a seemingly unbreakable wall between their relationship Even now, three years later, Deanna is still subjected to her father s cold stare and hard ignorance as well as the whiplash of an entire town Yet, this summer, Deanna has a plan work, make money, and move out with her older brother, his girlfriend, and their unplanned child who are all currently living in the basement of their current home As Deanna will come to realize though, her life isn t something she can plan and going forward isn t an option until you ve dealt with the past From the beginning itself, Deanna was a compelling heroine While it may seem as if the reader should instantly dislike her for her actions, we are unable to as we see this unfortunate situation from Deanna s perspective from the perspective of a thirteen year old girl whowasn tenjoying herself in the backseat of a car with an older guy, whodidn twant to go that far with someone older than her, whowasn tready for that type of a relationship, but who simply wanted attention and care fromsomeone, especially if her own family would not give it to her Thus, within the first few pages itself, we feel for Deanna and pity her situation Yet, what struck me the most about her tale was that instead of Deanna, her life could have been any of ours It is basic human nature to want to be loved and cared for and if any one of us were dealing with the same circumstances in life as Deanna, there is a high possibility we may have committed the same mistakes too No one, though, deserves to be blamed for those actions even three years later, which is where the true injustice of this tale comes through.Now, at sixteen, Deanna still isn t a perfect character If anything, she s in love with her best friend who is now the boyfriend of her one and only girl best friend Further, shestillcommits mistakes, makes a fool of herself, and is thrown into situations she has no control over Yet, while this is primarily Deanna s tale, it is also the tale of her brother who is attempting to be a good father and husband at such a young age I found the family dynamics in Deanna s life to be extremely lacking, but her relationship with her brother was one I truly cherished I liked how much a part of each others lives they tried to be and if it wasn t her brother, it was her brother s girlfriend who became Deanna s friend So, while Deanna did still commit many blunders in this story, she slowly begins to close up the wounds that started three years ago, whether it was forgiving Tom or moving on from her past or accepting her feelings for her best friend or facing the issues her family faced to survive together.But, while I found this novel to be very compelling and a story that grabbed me into its pages and made me feel for its characters, I was just a tad bit disappointed that Deanna didn t experiencegrowth In fact, the ending of this story was very open and while it healed some rifts, I would have liked to the see the culmination and consequences of some of the others What I liked though, was that Zarr made this a very realistic story Deanna s father was a despicable man who I hated for his treatment of Deanna, but I understood him too because of his ego and pride So, while I wanted their relationship to heal overnight, I m glad it didn t I m glad that her father is still mostly a jerk, but a slightly improving one Many aspects of Deanna s life are left like this and we don t really know what will become of her or her friends or anyone in her life, but we do know that she is strong enough to have faced all this and come out alive, which means she can face muchin the future At its core,Story of a Girlis really a story of courage, bravery, and hope and I adored it It was extremely well written and as far as debuts go, this was impeccable I will definitely be readingof Sara Zarr in the future it s hardnotto be drawn to an author who writes this well In fact, there s alot than goes on in this story secondary characters I loved, conversations I adored, other situations I didn t bring up, etc Yet, I feel as if explaining them would take away from their charm, so I hope you will excuse my vague plot summary and check this book out for yourself It is an incredible gut wrenching read that will win you over with its subtle form of characterization and I highly recommend it You can read this review andon my blog, Ivy Book Bindings

  7. Limonessa says:

    Abandon all hope Ye who enter here.This is what I wanted to inscribe on a plate and stick on the front page of the book as I was reading the first half Have you read my profile description Well, I state that I read only what relaxes me This book is NOT relaxing It s depressing At least for the first part So if you are all about flowers and puppies, happy thoughts and happily ever afters, I warn you that this book will not make you feel better Deanna is 16 lives in the blue collar town of Abandon all hope Ye who enter here.This is what I wanted to inscribe on a plate and stick on the front page of the book as I was reading the first half Have you read my profile description Well, I state that I read only what relaxes me This book is NOT relaxing It s depressing At least for the first part So if you are all about flowers and puppies, happy thoughts and happily ever afters, I warn you that this book will not make you feel better Deanna is 16 lives in the blue collar town of Pacifica, where her parents work some pretty low paid jobs She is well known in town because, at age 13, she s been caught by her father in the backseat of a car having sex with Jimmy, her older brother s best friend Even after 3 years, her life still seems to be defined by this pivotal moment, by this incredibly stupid mistake she s made and just has to live with the slut label Being realistic YA fiction, this book is not about action It s all about characters The first thing that bugged me is that it s really hard to find a likable character, starting with our MC, Deanna Deanna is your typical teenager with father issues unable to receive attention and love from the figure she looks up to the most, she throws herself in the arms of the first person that makes her feel somehow special, even though she is too young and this person is all wrong This is not uncommon.What irked me was her initial not so initial because it lasted three years but initial for the book inability to snap out of it This event becomes a big deal because she lets it become one and lets it define her I also thought the whole resonance of the matter in town was a bit exaggerated, that after three years people would still be mean to her about it and adult people would still talk I come from a small town too and, over the years, there have been a few people who have made some embarrassing mistakes and they got public but I thought this was a bit blown out of proportion, especially by her father 13 is definitely too young to have sex but, unfortunately, not very uncommon nowadays It s a mistake but not the end of the world.Aside from Deanna, her whole family is dysfunctional, with the exception of Darren who, even though a father at only 19, seemed to be the only one with a grain of salt in his head But the sense of terrible social degradation that permeated the whole story is what struck me the most The mess in the house, the house falling to pieces with Christmas lights still out and nobody even caring about it, the diner where she works, the descriptions of which made my stomach churn with disgust, her squalid encounters with Jimmy, all left me with a sense of despair and hopelessness I wasn t really willing or ready to get into I know the problem is me doing the ostrich in this case but, when left with a choice, I d rather not read about other people s unhappy situations in life.Fortunately, throughout the second part of the book and to the end, Deanna slowly starts her path towards a partial redemption, finally trying to communicate with her family, confronting Jimmy and salvaging her friendship with Lee Zarr doesn t leave you completely hopeless but tries to resolve issues in the interpersonal dynamics of the characters, introducing forgiveness, mainly This to say that while I was pretty much hating the first part of the book I have to admit that, end in end, this deserves a littlethan 3 starts for me and that, in fact, I did like it The story is very well written and very intense, the characters are well developed though unlikable and the ending is in line with the rest of the book, not overly optimistic and unreal Hollywood movie like butsubdued, with little hints that it can get better I cannot give it a higher rating because this book is probably not for me Or maybe it is, because I almost read it in one sitting but it s just that I don t want to read about this The feeling I had that the characters have limited free will and that are, in reality, victims of their social conditions just leaves me with a bitter taste in the back of my mouth I don t want to have

  8. Crystal Starr Light says:

    Bullet Review I m VERY impressed Finally, a YA novel I don t want to choke myself after reading.Some may find the conclusion boring or unimpressive or pedestrian, but I thought it genius and inspired and indicative of real life Sometimes things get wrapped up or at least set back on a good track by a few simple words rather than some cataclysmic battle.Highly recommended to mature teens.Don t slut shame.Full Review Deanna Lambert has kinda a sh tty life She got caught having sex with Tommy Bullet Review I m VERY impressed Finally, a YA novel I don t want to choke myself after reading.Some may find the conclusion boring or unimpressive or pedestrian, but I thought it genius and inspired and indicative of real life Sometimes things get wrapped up or at least set back on a good track by a few simple words rather than some cataclysmic battle.Highly recommended to mature teens.Don t slut shame.Full Review Deanna Lambert has kinda a sh tty life She got caught having sex with Tommy Webber when she was 13 and he was 17 by her father now, three years later, her life is still marred by that event All she wants is to pick up with her brother, Darren, his girlfriend, Stacy, and their baby, April, and leave.I bought this book long ago, after having the opportunity to meet Sara Zarr At the time, I wasinterested in meeting Melissa Marr, Kelley Armstrong, and Beth Revis, so I didn t stop to chat or have her sign a book I ll admit, I felt guilty, so I went back and bought her signed debut copy of Story of a Girl.Lately, I ve been really weeding through my books, and I just on a whim picked this up, ready to get it off the shelves Well, the results were quite different from what I expected Zarr is a highly talented writer with a superb story that I think many girls from many walks of life will admire.The essence of the story is forgiveness and realizing that if you aren t happy with yourself, it doesn t matter where you run, you will still be unhappy But just writing that out totally doesn t do justice to the story.It s realizing that everyone has his or her own sh t That when you say mean things to another person, yes, I m sorry your life is awful, but that other person still didn t deserve it It s owning up to your mistakes, being the adult in a situation and saying, I messed up I was wrong I m sorry It s about changing your life by facing your problems.To get sappy, it s about changing the world by being the change.Each character, from our protagonist, Deanna, to horrible Tommy, who while he didn t rape her in the violent usage of the word, did pressure her until she said yes, got to have a say, got to have nuance This is a group of just normal people, living mediocre lives and just figuring out how to deal with it.Which is probably why I LOVED the conclusion I thought it was spot on With the way Deanna s family was, I d be surprised at acataclysmic conclusion and while I d love for Deanna s dad to just outright stop being a d ck, the fact is, it s obvious by the end of the book that he s changing Plus, I couldn t help but see the obvious signs of depression In short, this was a fantastic book that I would definitely recommend to teens Zarr proved herself a competent writer I ve really been waning on my reading of young adult and Zarr proved that there are young adult writers who aren t writing sappy romances or generic dystopias and cancer books I m still timid about readingof her works, just because I m moving away from the young adult genre, but if you do like YA contemporary books, you should enjoy this.Dialogue Sexual Situations Violence Mild I don t recall any or many f bombs.Tommy and Deanna s relationship is never described in graphic terms and mostly from a flashback POV.A boy grabs Deanna, and she pushes him back Security is called

  9. Megan says:

    We all went to highschool with that girl You know, the slutty one Maybe she had sex with her boyfriend in the band room after school Or with multiple guys in the alley behind the grocery store Or gave head to a member of the soccer team during a party Or maybe she didn t But whether she did or not doesn t really matter Because these sexual gossip stories and labels are how she will be defined by her peers The Story of a Girl is the story of Deanna Lambert, a girl who was discovered to be We all went to highschool with that girl You know, the slutty one Maybe she had sex with her boyfriend in the band room after school Or with multiple guys in the alley behind the grocery store Or gave head to a member of the soccer team during a party Or maybe she didn t But whether she did or not doesn t really matter Because these sexual gossip stories and labels are how she will be defined by her peers The Story of a Girl is the story of Deanna Lambert, a girl who was discovered to be having sex with a 17 year old friend of her brother when she was only 13 Four years later, Deanna s self esteem is worse than it was back then, she only has two friends, and is labeled the town slut In addition she comes from a low income, incredibly dysfunctional family Speaking of her family, Deanna s father was the one who initially discovered her in a sexual act with the older boy This created a hot mess of tension between father and daughter which is still affecting their relationship As someone who grew up in a small Ohio town, I found this story as well as Deanna s slut shamming to be very realistic Kudos to all of you lucky enough to experience your adolescence in a large city Or an enlightened part of the country In the heart of the Midwest, those stories do stay with girls long after they should.While there are a ton of realistic YA novels dealing with sexuality, self esteem, friendship and family issues, very few of them feel nearly as realistic as Story of a Girl Deanna struggles with conflicted feelings towards sex, jealously of her only female friend, maintaining a platonic relationship with her only male friend, and idolizing her older brother Deanna also suffers a whole mess of issues revolving around her father, as well as her mother What makes this book so unique is that Deanna is not the sort of YA protagonist to look up to She doesn t always make the right decision or say the right thing She is troubled, insecure and secretive There is no big epiphany at the end or heartwarming moment But in all of Deanna s interactions, words and thoughts there is an honesty that is often missing from YA novels So why only three stars As I mentioned, Deanna is a mess Yet at the end, things appear to be looking up Author Sara Zarr did not shy away from creating a fucked up situation, but when everything was said and done everything turned out okay Granted Zarr showed us the rationale for Deanna s bad behavior But no matter how justified crappy behavior is, there are usually consequences I just don t buy that relationships will go back to the way they were, or even become stronger after a person acts like a jerk Unfortunately that is the only thing I find disappointing in Zarr s novels She has a talent for making unlikable characters sympathetic, but seems unwilling to let anything bad happen to them once they and their baggage have been introduced

  10. Isamlq says:

    what would have been a thirty minute coffee break this morning morphed into two hours of me ordering one round after another, all because i didn t want this to end i might have gotten couple side glances too, with maybe imaginary word bubbles of what s bugging you and why the clenched jaw directed my way and how could i not clench my jaws how could i not breathe deep really, how could i not when this story of this girl had both angry me and sad me riled up the only time i wanted to make what would have been a thirty minute coffee break this morning morphed into two hours of me ordering one round after another, all because i didn t want this to end i might have gotten couple side glances too, with maybe imaginary word bubbles of what s bugging you and why the clenched jaw directed my way and how could i not clench my jaws how could i not breathe deep really, how could i not when this story of this girl had both angry me and sad me riled up the only time i wanted to make a fist pump of joy was how she dealt with tommy every other moment had me dreading what would happen next so, right now, there s angry me, and then there s sad me goodness, but this book has those two halves in me jostling at each other just to have their say first.she s a pretty decent kid too, wise about some things but not so wise that she d avoid the moments that had me screaming NOOO you know better, right and don t do it, don t do it in my head that she doesn t have it all us made plain, but that there were positives too can t be denied either it s simply that those few positives didn t go all the way take the brother and the mother who were present but mired in their own thing her mother especially, who s presence was felt, but almost always fell short and you know what i could forgive them to an extent especially when darren made it clear that they were in the same boat then doling out some tough love with her needing to make her own way out i was all set for this big yay but was held back by the nagging question of what about her Which the girl eerily echoes moments later with her, I, Deanna Lambert, belong to no one, and no one belongs to me I don t know what to do sniff but it s her father who had me blinking back but blinking back why from my anger for him or from my disappointment in him for her her feelings for him, recalling what was, missing it but being resigned that they were the way they were had me gluedThat s what I figured out that day that as much as I d let him down, he d let me down, too, and he was the one who should know better He was my dad That s when I had to make myself stop loving him I had to remember the way he used to be, because if I kept thinking about the old dad every time I looked at him, I would never stop hurtingSOB heavy stuff here all because people make mistakes and with things that matter being left unsaid.4.5 5

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