The Nowhere Girls by Amy Reed releases tomorrow October 10th, and I am thrilled to be a part of the last day of the blog tour! Today’s stop includes a special guest post where I got to ask Amy Reed about feminism and her inspiration for the book. Check out all the book information, the rest of the tour, and a tour-wide giveaway!
Three misfits come together to avenge the rape of a fellow classmate and in the process trig-ger a change in the misogynist culture at their high school transforming the lives of everyone around them in this searing and timely story.
Who are the Nowhere Girls?
They’re everygirl. But they start with just three:
Grace Salter is the new girl in town, whose family was run out of their former community af-ter her southern Baptist preacher mom turned into a radical liberal after falling off a horse and bumping her head.
Rosina Suarez is the queer punk girl in a conservative Mexican immigrant family, who dreams of a life playing music instead of babysitting her gaggle of cousins and waitressing at her un-cle’s restaurant.
Erin Delillo is obsessed with two things: marine biology and Star Trek: The Next Generation, but they aren’t enough to distract her from her suspicion that she may in fact be an android.
When Grace learns that Lucy Moynihan, the former occupant of her new home, was run out of town for having accused the popular guys at school of gang rape, she’s incensed that Lucy never had justice. For their own personal reasons, Rosina and Erin feel equally deeply about Lucy’s tragedy, so they form an anonymous group of girls at Prescott High to resist the sexist culture at their school, which includes boycotting sex of any kind with the male students.
Told in alternating perspectives, this groundbreaking novel is an indictment of rape culture and explores with bold honesty the deepest questions about teen girls and sexuality.
I was so lucky to get the most perfect editor possible for The Nowhere Girls, Liesa Abrams at Simon Pulse. She believed in this book from the very beginning and was my champion every step of the way. It was a very personal project for her too, and her devotion to my book was incredible. Everyone at Simon Pulse was a cheerleader for this book. They’re an imprint full of feminists ☺
2. With the horrors of rape victims and their lack of justice in the real world, how does your book try to educate young girls to stand up for themselves and others?
At the most basic level, The Nowhere Girls shows the power of solidarity among women. It acknowledges how alone so many of us feel, how scared and confused and vulnerable, and it shows how powerful it is to tell our stories, how essential it is to release our shame. The girls in this story come from diverse backgrounds and have diverse stories, but they all connect and relate and care for each other. They have each other’s backs. Even in the face of an administration that wants them silent (which is something we all know far too well, on a national level), they create their own power by banding together, and they end up creating real change because they refuse to back down.
3. What was your inspiration to write The Nowhere Girls, and what does this story mean to you?
Rape culture was on my mind a lot in 2015, when I started writing the book. I read two incredible YA novels, ALL THE RAGE by Courtney Summers, and THE WAY I USED TO BE by Amber Smith. Both books were unflinching and true in their explorations of the aftermath of sexual assault, but in both books the girls were alone. This is too often the case—either girls tell and no one believes them, or they don’t tell and it tears them apart from the inside. I wrote The Nowhere Girls in response to this. I wanted to write a different way. I wanted to write about girls supporting each other and fighting back. I wanted to write a book where girls don’t have to be alone. This is meaningful to me for so many reasons—I have a 4-year old daughter who deserves a better world than the one we have now. I want her to know she never has to be alone. It is also for the girl I was as a teen, when I felt so alone dealing with my own sexual assault. I don’t want any girl to have to feel alone. I want us to lift each other up and give each other strength.
Amy Reed was born and raised in and around Seattle, where she attended a total of eight schools by the time she was eighteen. Constant moving taught her to be restless and being an only child made her imagination do funny things. After a brief stint at Reed College (no rela-tion), she moved to San Francisco and spent the next several years serving coffee and getting into trouble. She eventually graduated from film school, promptly decided she wanted noth-ing to do with filmmaking, returned to her original and impractical love of writing, and earned her MFA from New College of California. Her short work has been published in jour-nals such as Kitchen Sink, Contrary, and Fiction. Amy currently lives in Oakland with her husband and two cats, and has accepted that Northern California has replaced the Pacific Northwest as her home. She is no longer restless. Find out more at amyreedfiction.com.
BEAUTIFUL is her first novel.
A finished copy of The Nowhere Girls (US only)
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