This is one of those books that takes you along on a ride and at the end, you’re not really sure where you’ve ended up. Although it did remind me of We Were Liars, there was something different about Beware that Girl. Teresa Toten did a really good job of giving us just enough information to follow along, but the secrets that these two girls were holding made a lot of their actions really ambiguous. Kate and Olivia are two girls who meet (almost) by chance and who feed off of one another. They need each other–Kate, the Have-Not, believes that Olivia is her ticket to Yale. Olivia, the Rich Girl Who Wants for Nothing, needs someone who actually supports her and isn’t waiting around for her to crumble. They establish a relationship that deals with a lot of tiptoeing around their sensitive subjects, and occasionally throwing out a secret. Not the big one, though. They’re too afraid it will break everything apart.
At first, I wasn’t sure that I was going to enjoy Beware that Girl. It was slow to start, and matters were complicated by the varying points of view: Kate, in first person; Olivia, in third person; and Kate and Olivia in third person. I can handle multiple narrators, but please pick one point of view. The narration, despite the annoying first/third person switching, gradually gripped me as a read to find out the conclusion of this thriller. Like We Were Liars, I hesitate to say more for fear of accidentally ruining the story. I was surprised at how much I needed to see the end of this story once I got into it.
I do think that Beware that Girl relied too much on the thriller aspect of the novel; I feel as though I’ve only gotten a little glimpse of who Olivia and Kate are, which works, because that’s kind of their M.O., but as a reader, that was frustrating. I didn’t feel like any of the other characters had been fleshed out enough. They remained pretty flat throughout as the story progressed, often written out of the picture until it suited the story for them to briefly make a reappearance. As much as I loved the thriller aspect, characters–even (and especially) side characters–make the story. It would have been nice to see a bit more of that.
Although it had a tinge of a sped up quality, I’m satisfied with how Beware that Girl was written. Once it got to heart of the thriller I couldn’t stop reading, even if I had some of the points picked out before they were revealed. I blame it on how much I read. Definitely good for readers who like YA thrillers and mysteries.
About 3.5 stars.
I received a copy of Beware that Girl from NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Beware that Girl will be available on May 31st, 2016!