High School Senior Regina Afton is part of the “in” crowd. Along side her BFF Anna, no one can stop her. The students hate them for being so popular, but they fear them more and that is just the way Regina prefers it. No one is off-limits to her click and they will destroy anyone in their paths and Regina is all too happy to do it as long as it keeps Anna on her side. Regina knows there is nothing that can bring her down.
Until…. one day…
At a party one night Anna’s boyfriend moves in on Regina. When Regina confides in someone about a potential rape, she is sold out for a chance for the other girl to replace her in the popularity circle. What follows is a series of events that spiral Regina from the top of the heap to the lowest position in the school, practically overnight. As Regina struggles for a foothold, she sees how her treatment of others has left her with no allies, except possibly the one boy she had helped destroy.
I have so many thoughts about this book.
I seen a review of this late last summer and thought it sounded interesting then. More recently I found it on a list for a Cybils award and knew that I had to read it.
Some Girls Are is a book of all the things I love and hate about some of the YA I read. Let’s start with hate.
I hate (I know that’s a strong word – and really dislike is probably more appropriate here) when the books center around parties and drinking and drugs…. and there is plenty of all of the above in Some Girls Are. I am not prudish, I just think of the audience the books are for and when I see High School characters doing these things like it is just a part of their 15 – 18-year-old existence, it bothers me.
In particular there is a line in the book when Regina’s mom tells her that if she continues to skip school, she will no longer be allowed to see her friends, go out with her boyfriend, or go to parties. Go to parties?
AND (I am fired up now!) In several instances in the book it seems like these parties go late. I mean LATE. While they are always wise to have a designated driver – the level of drinking in this book makes me wonder – do these kids not have curfews? Do their parents not care if their teenager stumbles into the house at 3 am smelling like a brewery or higher than a kite?
Now that I said my piece with that. Let me tell you what I love about the book.
I love the relationships that author Courtney Summers creates within this book. I honestly felt Regina’s pain when she is betrayed and ostracized from her friends. For those of us who have been through high school, we should all be able to remember what it feels like when a secret is told… when a friend, is no longer the friend you thought he/she was. In this, Courtney Summers excels with the accurate descriptions of the high emotion of youth.
In all YA I read, I try to find the deeper lesson and it is told well here. As Regina’s story unfolds, she learns who her true friends are, and in the process of healing – she finds herself too.
And holy smokes, can someone say “Mean Girls?” The level of evilness that happens within this book is no less than the movie that holds that name. FYI: There is a girl in the movie – also named Regina….
Overall, this is a book I did appreciate. I enjoyed the writing style, it became hard to put down as I began to wonder what would be Regina’s breaking point…. who was going to come out on top… and would there (could there?) be a reconciliation between the once friends.
I look forward to reading Courtney Summers again.
The 2011 Reading map has been updated to include Some Girls Are
*Actually, I could not find a location for Some Girls Are so I Googled The High School they mention in the book and turns out – there is one in Maine…. so Maine it is. If anyone knows where the book is set at, please let me know. 😀
I borrowed this book from my local library
25 thoughts on “Some Girls Are by Courtney Summers”
I don’t think I’ve heard of this one before, but it certainly sounds like one to read.
I liked it Nikki Ann, despite my small venting I still really enjoyed the read 😀
Hmm, I’m thinking this, along with most YA books, is one I’ll pass on….
Thanks for sharing your thoughts.
Sure Laurel… I do enjoy YA reads… I like the energy of them. 🙂
This sounds perfect for an adult maybe a bit too much for a teen w/ all the late night partying, etc. But I was hooked at the synopsis. xo
I agree Rebecca,I love the synopsis of this book… just felt the partying was a bit too much.
I loved this book and can’t recommend it enough to my freshmen. Yes, there is quite a bit of drinking and parties. But that’s what my kids relate too (sadly enough). Plus, they come back with the book and say give me another! Then I give them “Fall For Anything” and there is no drugs and no drinking but they still love it. I find that Courtney Summers has really helped to develop my readers in a way that keeps them interested, but also diverts them from popular series like “Gossip Girl” etc.
Great points Reagan…. I did love the book – just not some of the scenes… I know it is what kids relate too… and I do like the fact it makes them ask for more to read.
When my son was in high school, there was a lot of partying and drinking going on with the cool kids – I’m just glad that he chose not to participate. A lot of the parents knew it was going on, but chose to ignore it.
The battle of parenthood Kathy. Same thing here… my boys would tell me I was so much more stricter than their friends moms. I would tell them the dangers and that I loved them enough to care.
My biggest battle was the parents who didn’t care.
I love that this book brought out some fierce emotions!! I must read it 😀
I do too Staci – and yes, you must!
I also really loved this book. And from my experience there are a lot of teens who do live this kind of lifestyle, whose parents are largely absent from their lives by way of discipline or knowing what’s going on. And I think that those teens deserve to have their experiences reflected in literature as well.
That is a great point Amy!
I’ve had this on my TBR list for some time. I came across it during a project in Library School that foucused on MultiCulturalism within YA Literature. I love books are “real”
This is a great book for real Patricia 🙂
Sad to say, there are a lot of parents who can’t be bothered with being parents. It is work and it is hard. Much easier to ignore or go along with what is going on. Everywhere we have lived, they have arrested parents for supplying the alcohol for their kid’s parties. High school is much more difficult now than when I went through, back in olden times as my grandson likes to say. I don’t think kids were so vicious then.
Pat you know I struggle with that just becuase I worked so hard to be their for me kids but even looking back now there are so many things I could have done better.
No parents are perfect and even looking at our character Regina’s parents – they were present – and her mom did try to connect with her, but it is so hard in todays world.
I agree. I can see lots of things I wish my husband and I had done differently. You do the best you can and hope the kids come out all right. There are just too many parents out there who want to be buddies instead of parents or just don’t want to be bothered.
Sounds like a book I would like to read. As a mature parent (luckily my sons are adults now too) I think I have the same concerns you have over the “partying” and late hours.
It is a great book Laurie and as much as I cringe about the lack of guidance – I know that is a big part of todays world.
Sounds like a good YA read. I get frustrated with YA too for the same reasons that you state.
I love YA reads Kathleen – but I do appreciate it when they do not go overboard with the partying…. I am trying to find a happy medium.
Is this any relation to Cracked up to be by Courtney Summers? I just finished reading it this weekend and the stories are very similar.
Same author…. I hope to try that one too Missy.