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30 June 2019

Book Review: Girls with Sharp Sticks by Suzanne Young *AD Gifted

Simon and Schuster Children's Books sent me a free electronic review copy of Girls with Sharp Sticks by Suzanne Young via NetGalley.

When I first heard about Girls with Sharp Sticks I knew I wanted to read it - it has a few of my catnip tropes. Once my NetGalley wish was granted, I was excited to pick it up. And once I started reading, I was not disappointed.

Girls with Sharp Sticks by Suzanne Young coverAdd to Goodreads button
The Girls of Innovations Academy are beautiful and well-behaved - it says so on their report cards. Under the watchful gaze of their Guardians, the all-girl boarding school offers an array of studies and activities, from “Growing a Beautiful and Prosperous Garden” to “Art Appreciation” and “Interior Design.” The girls learn to be the best society has to offer. Absent is the difficult math coursework, or the unnecessary sciences or current events. They are obedient young ladies, free from arrogance or defiance.

Until Mena starts to realize that their carefully controlled existence may not be quite as it appears.

As Mena and her friends begin to uncover the dark secrets of what’s actually happening there - and who they really are - the girls of Innovations will find out what they are truly capable of. Because some of the prettiest flowers have the sharpest thorns.

Amazon UK | Amazon US

5 Words: Control, manipulation, perfection, rebellion, life.

Content warnings: physical abuse, graphic violence, murder, PTSD, infertility, mental abuse and manipulation.

I have to admit that when I first picked up Girls with Sharp Sticks I had Expectations. It was promising to bring together some of my favoruite things: a boarding school setting, feminist themes, dystopian storyline. And this book blew my expectations out of the water.

Parts of this story had my toes curling. Parts of this story are terrifying. Parts of it broke my heart. And all of this is because of how scarily plausible the whole thing is. It's disturbing and compelling and I couldn't help but be fascinated by the world.

Mena was an excellent character - unreliable at times for Reasons, but a character who I loved reading about. I was rooting for her the whole time.

I really loved the questions this book posed about ownership, perfection, ethics, the standards people are held to, sexism... It's a bit of an issue book, all wrapped up in a gripping story.

I don't want to spoil the book, because you HAVE TO READ IT, but there was a twist that absolutely flabbergasting. This book kept me guessing. Once I got to the end the whole story felt different, and I know that when I reread it (and I will reread it) I'll see things in a new light and pick up on the clues that I may have missed.

So stop sleeping on this book. Go out and Read It because I need more people to talk about it with.

I'm starting to see how unusual our lives are here. And the more I recognize it... the more I want to change it.


  1. *goes to check out this book right now* I'M INTRIGUED!!!

  2. Oooh. This sounds good. I'll need to find out more about the PTSD content but almost definitely one I need to pick up

  3. I am instantly intrigued by this book! Great review!

  4. This sounds like such an intriguing book, your review has now got me curious! It sounds like it has every ingredient to be a very gripping and powerful story. I love the idea of a twist at the end, unpredictable books are the best kinda books. Thanks for sharing your thoughts Cora and introducing me to something new! <3 xx

    Bexa |

  5. It sounds like this book covers a lot of topics, I don’t think based on that it would be a book for me. But I am sure a important story to highlight these areas. You have written a great review! Thank you for sharing xx

  6. I really like the cover of this book! Lovely review, Cora!😊

    Shirley |

  7. Oh this sounds so good and disturbing in the best of ways.

  8. This definitely sounds like an interesting one!! Great review!

  9. Definitely going to be keeping an eye out for this book!

  10. How have I not heard of this book yet? It sounds so interesting!!

  11. This looks really interesting and I'm kind of shocked I've not seen anything about it! Definitely going to pick this one up!


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