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Girl Online: The First Novel by Zoella Hardcover – November 25, 2014

247 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


“Sugg’s obvious understanding of the complexities and pitfalls of the online world, coupled with her sensitivity to adolescence, make for a compelling and satisfying coming-of-age tale in the digital age.” (Booklist)

Girl Online left us wishing adorkable, quirky Penny was our BFF (especially if the package included her amazing best friend Elliot!) because who doesn’t love a sweet, adventure-filled NYC love story? No one, that’s who! A must read for fans of Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares, Invisibility, and Suite Scarlett.” (Justine Magazine)

About the Author

Zoe Sugg is the New York Times bestselling author of Girl Online, as well as an English fashion and beauty vlogger and Internet personality. She is best known for her Zoella channel on YouTube, which attracts millions of subscribers. She has won numerous blogging and vlogging honors since 2011, including Cosmopolitan Beauty Blog and Vlogger Awards, a BBC Radio 1 Teen Award, a Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Award, and a Teen Choice Award.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Atria/Keywords Press (November 25, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1476797455
  • ISBN-13: 978-1476797458
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.3 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (247 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,625 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

143 of 174 people found the following review helpful By Kathryn Donohue on December 3, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
There are many words that I'd use to describe Girl Online, my favorite ones being Cliche, Predictable, Disappointing, and downright awful.
When I found out that Zoe was writing a book, I was ecstatic. I have so much respect for her and everything she has done in her life. I think she is a great role model and a wonderful online personality.
As an author, though, I am very disappointed. I bought this book despite the cliche sounding synopsis because I figured Zoe would give a unique take on the classic love story. I, however, was very let down. I am at my wits end when it comes to reading books about a teenage girl who is clumsy and shy with few friends. How many more books can there be about girls who aren't "pretty" yet all seem to have conventionally attractive features (I.E. a slender frame, curly/shiny hair, freckles)? And don't even get me started on the perfect-yet-edgy musician boy who finds her beautiful and helps her see her inner beauty.
I could have gotten past this totally cliche plot line if it had not been for the dreadful writing. Again, I have so much respect for Zoe and love reading her blog, but I did not see any of the same talented writing that I've seen on her blog translated into this book. To be honest, I have read fan fiction with better writing and character development. The lack of character development I attribute to the cliche plot, but the rest of the writing was just disappointing. There is no difference in the dialogue of the girls and the boys in the novel. I don't know about you, but I do not talk the same way that an 18 year old boy talks. Good thing she has "Noah whispers, Noah asks, Noah begins, Noah says, etc" after EVERY LINE OF DIALOGUE because otherwise, I wouldn't know who is speaking.
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169 of 208 people found the following review helpful By Peppermints on December 2, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If we're being honest, I truly feel this book doesn't even deserve one star for it's target audience being young adult. It's meant to be a fluffy romance read, which I am typically a fan of, but this story didn't even get close to hitting the mark.

I have enjoyed watching Zoe Sugg, or Zoella's vlogs for a few years now and had high standards for the book as she had stated it was a passion of hers. I picked it up from Amazon for ten bucks (a serious steal for hardcover!) and couldn't get past the first chapter. I tried to return it, but like an empty packet of gum, Amazon didn't even want it back.

I ended up skimming through - not reading beginning to end, as I was struggling already by page 20. I decided to skip through pages in order to understand the plot, characters, and in general what was happening.Usually I try to be transparent in reviewing books, and if I dislike one I typically say it was an unpleasant or unenjoyable read. However,"Girl Online is a special case as I will simply say to you - I hated it.

*Edit: With the new allegations of a ghost writer (whomever it may be, and if the accusations are true), I am absolutely horrified that this book outsold J.K. Rowling. I do not believe a story that isn't truly penned by the author should have any prominence in the best-selling category.

I would also like to add that this book is only breaking records due to the name slapped on the cover, not the organs of it. There are plenty of young adult romance stories, both worse and better than Zoe's, and none of them have sold 80,000 copies, simply due to the fact that they are simply books - "Girl Online" is a product. Think of a perfume brand from a well known celebrity, and that's what this is.
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75 of 97 people found the following review helpful By Ashley Evans on December 5, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Upon starting Girl Online, my first impressions were:

1. This author uses way too many exclamation marks.
2. This book feels extremely childish.

I eventually got over that first point. Well, either I “got over” it or the author stopped using so many exclamation marks… But that second point continued throughout the story.

Maybe part of it is my fault. I feel like a lot of the YA books out there feature 16-18 year old main characters, but they always sound so mature. They could pass for more like 18-20. However, in Girl Online, the main character Penny was only 15… and she sounded like it (if not younger). Everything about her just screamed “child”. It felt like a very young young adult book (or old middle grade). Sometimes she acted more like 13 or 14. The four year old often acted more grown up than Penny did.

So maybe this rating is my fault. At 23, I’m not the target audience, but I read it anyway expecting it to be a bit “older” feeling, like many YA books are. Only it wasn’t.

=== Penny was almost too clumsy ===

I think this is one of the reasons why the book felt so childish. Penny was ridiculously clumsy… to the point where I didn’t believe it. I was rolling my eyes.

“It’s at exactly this moment that I fall into a hole. OK, it’s not a big hole and I don’t actually disappear inside it or anything, but I do catch my foot and end up tumbling forward—making me look about as attractive and sophisticated as a Saturday-night drunk. That’s one thing I hate about Brighton, where I live. It seems to be full of holes that exist just for me to fall into!”

“But then, as I gather up mine and Elliot’s coats, I trip on my scarf and crash into a waitress carrying a tray of toasted paninis.
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