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Review: New Girl by Paige Harbison

Monday, January 30, 2012
New Girl by Paige Harbison
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Publisher: HarlequinTeen
Release Date: January 31, 2012
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
Challenge: 2012 Contemporary & Sophomore
They call me 'New Girl'...

Ever since I arrived at exclusive, prestigious Manderly Academy, that’s who I am. New girl. Unknown. But not unnoticed—because of her.

Becca Normandy—that’s the name on everyone’s lips. The girl whose picture I see everywhere. The girl I can’t compare to. I mean, her going missing is the only reason a spot opened up for me at the academy. And everyone stares at me like it’s my fault.

Except for Max Holloway—the boy whose name shouldn’t be spoken. At least, not by me. Everyone thinks of him as Becca’s boyfriend but she’s gone, and here I am, replacing her. I wish it were that easy. Sometimes, when I think of Max, I can imagine how Becca’s life was so much better than mine could ever be.

And maybe she’s still out there, waiting to take it back.

New Girl and I had a very love hate kind of relationship.

One thing I wished I knew before I read New Girl was that it's a retelling of Daphne du Maurier's gothic novel Rebecca. I've never read Rebecca, but I was creeped out nonetheless.

I loved that through-out the whole book, the main character was always referenced as the "New Girl". This was probably something I would have known if I've read Rebecca, but I still loved that I didn't realized I finished so much of the book without knowing her name. I was up half the night trying to remember her name thinking that I missed it. I also spent the other half of the night wrapped up in the mystery of Becca.

The one thing that bothered me the most was the main character. I can understand why she thought her life was so awful. Starting senior year at a new school, living in the shadows of a girl like Becca Normandy, and falling for a guy labeled as Becca's boyfriend definitely qualifies as awful. But my sympathy for the "New Girl" only reached so far when she spent so much of her time feeling sorry for herself.

I'm not exactly sure how I feel about New Girl, but it was entertaining.


  1. Hmmm... I received this one from NetGalley and had planned on reading it in January but wasn't able to make it happen... I've seen mixed reviews that just make me more curious to read it. Though I often have a hard time with characters that feel sorry for themselves when life really in the grand scheme of things is not so bad. Especially if they don't seem to snap out of it and redeem themselves by the end. Doe she?

    Thanks for the honest review!
    ~ Jen @ A Book and a Latte - 2012 YA Audiobook Challenge

  2. It's a book you LOVE to HATE if you know what I mean. I didn't know what to think of it either but despite hating the characters . . . I still oddly loved it. Great review!


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