ARC Review: I’m the Girl by Courtney Summers
We read early copies (what feels like a decade ago) of Courtney Summers’ recently released I’m the Girl. Let me tell you, this book has stayed with us this whole time. Courtney has a unique style of thriller that fits in the ‘so uncomfortable you can’t look away‘ category. Read our thoughts below, and grab yourself a box of tissues, and maybe some chocolates, and read I’m the Girl, available now.
Many thanks to Wednesday Books for the advance copy, which did not impact our thoughts below.
I'm the Girlby Courtney Summers
Published by: Wednesday Books
on September 13, 2022
Genres: Contemporary, LGBTQIA+, Mystery, Thriller, Young Adult
The new groundbreaking queer thriller from New York Times bestselling and Edgar-award Winning author Courtney Summers.
When sixteen-year-old Georgia Avis discovers the dead body of thirteen-year-old Ashley James, she teams up with Ashley's older sister, Nora, to find and bring the killer to justice before he strikes again. But their investigation throws Georgia into a world of unimaginable privilege and wealth, without conscience or consequence, and as Ashley’s killer closes in, Georgia will discover when money, power and beauty rule, it might not be a matter of who is guilty—but who is guiltiest.
A spiritual successor to the 2018 breakout hit, Sadie, I'm the Girl is a masterfully written, bold, and unflinching account of how one young woman feels in her body as she struggles to navigate a deadly and predatory power structure while asking readers one question: if this is the way the world is, do you accept it?
I’m the Girl is a glass case of emotions, where you’re ready to shatter as you watch Georgia and Nora experience the violent world women often live in. This is the world of the Epsteins and Weinsteins, but also the world of your teenage neighbors (and maybe your teenage self). The place where girls are exploited – but also strive to regain their own power. This is the world Courtney Summers never shies away from – and you can’t look away because this is the world of I’m the girl.
I’m the Girl is the book Courtney shared her queer identity, though if you’ve read her others, you’ll see queer themes woven within. She’s written about the downsides of #ownvoices, where authors are expected to put out pieces of themselves they may not want to in order to be accepted into certain spaces. The theme of vulnerability is central to I’m the Girl.
Just like every other Courtney Summers’ character, Georgia is easy to label as unlikeable. Reality is – she is you and she is me. She’s us with the right (or wrong) set of circumstances. The encounters with power and privilege and having your vulnerabilities exploited, while discovering your beauty is wealth. It’s as easy to say, that could never be me – and it’s easier to say, that could easily be me.
It’s brutal and unflinching. It’s hard to read and compelling. It’s the two-sided coin of power and strength. It will wring you through a laundry list of emotions and hopefully you’ll dry out on the other side.