Saturday, January 14, 2012

Review: New Girl by Paige Harbison

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  • Publisher: Harlequin
  • Publication date: 1/31/2012
  • Pages: 320
(eARC provided from NetGallley for review)

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Welcome to Manderley Academy
I hadn't wanted to go, but my parents were so excited…. So here I am, the new girl at Manderley, a true fish out of water. But mine's not the name on everyone's lips. Oh, no.
It's Becca Normandy they can't stop talking about. Perfect, beautiful Becca. She went missing at the end of last year, leaving a spot open at Manderley—the spot that I got. And everyone acts like it's my fault that infallible, beloved Becca is gone and has been replaced by not perfect, completely fallible, unknown Me.
Then, there's the name on my lips—Max Holloway. Becca's ex. The one boy I should avoid, but can't. Thing is, it seems like he wants me, too. But the memory of Becca is always between us. And as much as I'm starting to like it at Manderley, I can't help but think she's out there, somewhere, watching me take her place.
Waiting to take it back.

My Thoughts

The synopsis for this book sounds really interesting and intriguing. I only wish the book had been the same. I enjoyed the book, but not as much as I wanted to. I thought that the pacing was slow, and the story was lacking. It was an interesting story, I just thought that it needed more. I liked how the story went back and forth between Becca's story the previous year, before she disappeared, and the "new girl" when she comes to Manderley. I really wished we could have really gotten to know the characters a little more though. I felt like I was an outsider instead of feeling like I was really in their heads. 

I didn't like Becca at all. I mean I don't think we are supposed to, but she goes beyond the mean popular girl. She is beyond mean. She is pretty psycho. She is a troubled girl, and being mean and getting what she wants at any cost is her way of making herself feel good. The "new girl' is so different, but everyone thinks she wants to be Becca. She just wants to finish high school and go to college with her friends back home. She doesn't try to get people to like her or go out of her way for attention the way Becca did.

The roommate Dana, is absolutely crazy. I found her annoying crazy though. I think that you are supposed to feel bad for her, but I really didn't. I thought she was just a nut job. She was horrible to the "new girl" right from the start. She never even tried to give her a chance because in her crazy head, she was angry that she was there and thought she wanted to replace Becca, even though "new girl" didn't know anything about her disappearance. Dana is upset because she thinks everyone just gave up and that Becca is coming back.

Overall the book wasn't bad, but I got sick of hearing about Becca having sex constantly, or just being a complete psycho. Then on the 'new girl's" parts o the story I was getting tired of the oh, poor me. I guess that is just high school drama though. I just really wish there was a little more substance to the story. The way it all wrapped up at the end was pretty good, if not a little predictable. I think that people who like dramatic contemporaries, and don't mind strong language will enjoy this book. 3 out of 5 stars.


  1. Oh no! I was really looking forward to this one. I plan to read it soon. It's good to read this and know what to expect though. But usually slow pace and lacking plot kind of makes me bored. Bleh. Becca seems... interesting O_O

    1. It could just be me. A lot of people really, really liked this one. I had read a few contemps in a row, and I have just gotten into them, so I might have just needed a different type of book to read. I am taking a contemporary break for a few books. lol!

  2. I actually started reading this one Thursday night and so far I LOVE it! You have to keep in mind though, this is a retelling of the classic Rebecca, which I am a fan of! If you don't like the original chances are you probably won't like this one! lol Because yep even in the classic, Rebecca is a total witch and Mrs. Danver's is a total psycho obsessed with Rebecca. I loved both the classic and the movie staring Joan Fontaine and Laurence Oliver. So far I am loving this as well! Can you tell I like the Rebecca tale? haha Sorry you didn't enjoy this one hun! Maybe the next one will be more your speed. :)

    1. I never read the original. I think I am having a contemporary overload. There was more than just Becca and Dana's behavior that bothered me too. I think I just felt kind of disconnected through the book and never felt like I was really getting to know any of the characters. I like to feel like I'm part of the story, with this one I felt like a spectator. I really hope you love it. I really wanted to.

    2. hahaha contemporary overload DOES happen! So does dystopian even though I love it! I have to mix it up otherwise I get quite cynical when it comes to books. I usually read a dystopian, contemporary and then a fantasy or thriller. Otherwise it's a mess!

    3. I am reading Daughter of Smoke and Bone and Everneath right now. I am trying to mix things up. I have two review books I need to do also, and Hallowed come out Tuesday!! SQUEEE!! I think that no matter what I am reading at the time everything will go on hold for Hallowed lol!!

  3. The overview of the book does sound like it would be really interesting but after reading your review I'll definitely avoid reading this book. I'm glad you liked it enough to give it 3 stars but I'm sorry it fell short of what you were hoping for. For some reason, being about high school students and then talking about having lots of sex and using lots of foul language puts me off. I know a lot of kids do that but it still annoys me when people use it in their writing, another way to keep showing teens that it's ok to do those types of things...

    1. It kind of goes with the story though so I guess it makes sense. I know a lot of people really loved this book, but if you are put off by a lot of sexual references and swearing you might want to skip this.


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